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Dancing Links

Like seemingly everyone in LA, I have recently been bitten by the Sudoku bug, a craze which swept England last spring. The Los Angeles Times started publishing these puzzles a few weeks ago.

Like many geeks, this addiction not only involves solving them with a pencil, but solving and generating them with a computer. I started by writing a Sudoku solver in Flash, which uses human-style techniques such as X-Wing and Swordfish.

Then I discovered Don Knuth’s remarkable paper on Dancing Links, and wrote a brute-force solver in Java which is significantly faster, and is the basis of a puzzle-generator I am working on.

If you’re like me, you can’t get enough puzzles and it is tedious to print them one at a time.

I made these printable Puzzle Books with my puzzle generator.


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