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Friday, July 13, 2018

Happy Birthday to the Puzzle Man


Happy Birthday to Erno Rubik. If you grew up in the 1970s and '80s then you may know exactly what puzzle he invented.

Erno Rubik was born July 13, 1944 in Hungary. He has wore many hats including inventor, architect and professor of architecture.  His best invention was as many of you may recall the mechanical puzzle known as the Rubik's Cube. He also invented the games Rubik's Magic, Rubik's Magic: Master Edition and Rubik's Snake to name just a few.

When he was not inventing puzzles he was promoting science in education. He is involved in several organizations such as Beyond Rubik's Cute, The Rubik Learning Initiative and the Judit Polgar Foundation. The organizations are created with one goal of getting students in science, math and problem solving involved at a young age.

Rubik was not sure how to do it but he knew he would create a structure that would allow individual pieces to move without all of it falling apart. So using blocks of wood and rubber bands the project began. He worked with his hands cutting wood, boring holes and fastening the contraption together with rubber bands.

When he introduced the project to his class of students they found great interest in it. It was then that Rubik began to think of manufacturing more so that a larger audience could enjoy his puzzle as well. His father, an inventor as well helped to apply for patent for his invention. He manufactured the puzzle being built in plastic and the cube became known as the "magic" cube.

In 1979 the Magic Cube was licensed to Ideal Toys. There it was rebranded and introduced in 1980. It was an instant success that took 6 years to come around. The cube won many awards such as Toy of the Year and by 1980 was part of pop culture. There has been over 350 million rubik's cubes sold making it the best selling toy of all time.

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