Rubik's cube history | Information on the Rubik's cube | Ernö Rubik


The Rubik's cube was invented in 1974 by the Hungarian professor of architecture Ernö Rubik. Some people may remember of it as the Magic Cube since at the beginning its inventor named it "Büvös Kocka", the Hungarian name for Magic Cube.
The Hungarian cube was firstly a success in its native country, and then it became a real triumph in the whole world. The object had been conceived at first in order to develop the faculties of visualization of the pupils in architecture. It turned out afterward that the educational dimension of the Rubik's Cube was much important... It is indeed a natural and material representation of some mathematical principles.

In fact Ernö Rubik had the first idea in spring 1974. He does several attempts and solve the cube for the first time summer (it took him one month to solve it). The final technical solution is ready at the end of the autumn of the same year.
At the beginning of year 1975, Ernö Rubik starts up the necessary process to apply for a patent and starts searching a partner for the industrial production, which finally begins in 1977. The cube quickly becomes very popular in Hungary.

The international interest in the cube began in 1980 to last until about 1983. During this period, a great number of Rubik's Cube was sold.
There were many broadcasts with speed competitions and shows around the cube. There was even a cartoon which dedicated to it. Many clubs were also created almost anywhere.


At this time the first world championship took place on June 5, 1982 in Budapest. 19 cubists of different nationalities took part to the event.
The cubes were scrambled by computer, then brought on the spot in sealed cases. The cube was placed on a pad with a photo sensitive diode at the bottom. The competitors had the possibility to examine the cube during 15 seconds before starting to solve.

Le podium
The first places were hold by:

1. Minh Thai (USA) 22.95 s

2. Razoux Schultz (Netherland) 24.32 s

3. Zoltán Lábas (Hungary) 24.49 s

For further information on this 1982 world championship, I recommend you Jessica Fridrich's page

Minh Thai's time, 22.95 seconds, is the official Rubik's cube world record.

But it can be hard to admit that it is, for several reasons:


Fortunately on August the 23 and 24, 2003 were held the The World Rubik's Games championships celebrating 25 years of the cube being in the mainstream...

I think the cubists were allowed to use their own cubes, prepared the best way for speedcubing (greased and already used a big number of times to make them less hard to turn than when they are new), and also with a color arrangement to which they are used to.
Since that time other championships were held. Please visit the World Cube Association website for more informations.
At the moment several cubists can regularly solve a cube under 10 seconds.

After the beginning of 1980's, the craze for the cube disappeared. Almost all clubs had disappeared.
But since the use of internet became common, the cubomania strongly re-appeared.
You can see Rubik's cube sold in every hypermarket, clubs and forums dedicated to the Rubik's cube are created,...
One thing that can be said is that the cube is a success : since its launch on market in 1977, more than 200 millions of cubes were sold according to the manufacturer (without counting the numerous imitations)!

Learn more about the cube

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