Computational creativity and the future of AI

ARM-based Robot smashes Rubik’s Cube world record by more than two seconds


March 17, 2014

The Cubestormer 3 robot used ARM technology to set the new record

The Cubestormer 3 robot used ARM technology to set the new record

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A specially designed robot known as Cubestormer 3 has been used to break the world record for solving a Rubik’s Cube. The robot, which broke the previous record by more than two seconds, is powered by an octa-core Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone.

ARM principle engineer David Gilday and co-inventor Mike Dobson are responsible for the robot, which managed to solve the cube in an impressive 3.253 seconds. The pair worked on the project in their spare time, and were actually responsible for the previous record of 5.27 seconds, set back in 2011 by the Cubestormer 2 robot.

The Cubestormer 3 is powered by the octa-core version of Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone, which pairs four Cortex-A7 CPUs with four Cortex-A15 processors.

The device looks at the cube, calculates the moves that need to be made and sends the instructions to the four robotic arms. The setup also uses ARM9 processors in it’s eight LEGO Mindstorm EV3 bricks, which help control and sequence the action.

The Cubestormer 3 is powered by an octa-core Samsung Galaxy S4

"This is more complex than it seems because Cubestormer 3 uses a speed cube which allows twists before the sides are fully-aligned," said Gilday of the achievement. "It means the robot is effectively mirroring the same kind of judgement and dexterity that a human speed cuber has to apply."

The current world record for a "human speed cuber" is 5.55 seconds, held by Mats Valk of the Netherlands. Though that time is close to the Cubestormer 2’s 2011 record, it falls significantly short of the new time, and barring a significant step forward in human evolution, we can’t see that changing anytime soon.

If you find the Rubik’s Cube lacks some of the allure it once did, there are plenty of bigger challenges to occupy your time. The human record for a 7x7 cube, for example, is a more hefty 2 minutes and 39 seconds.

If you’re looking for something a bit different, then why not check out the Bump Cube, a confusing mirror-coated offspring of the original classic.

Check out the video below to see the Cubestormer 3 in action.

Sources: ARM, World Cube Association

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About the Author
Chris Wood Chris specializes in mobile technology for Gizmag, but also likes to dabble in the latest gaming gadgets. He has a degree in Politics and Ancient History from the University of Exeter, and lives in Gloucestershire, UK. In his spare time you might find him playing music, following a variety of sports or binge watching Game of Thrones.   All articles by Chris Wood

7x7 cube in 2min 51sec

17th March, 2014 @ 10:13 am PDT

Truly amazing! Thanks for posting that, hedgehog. :-)

18th March, 2014 @ 09:24 pm PDT
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