Hello there. I am Terry and I am a full-time undergraduate based in Singapore. I take photos, write a blog and design websites.

And no, I'm not a teddy bear.

Human VS Supercomputer?

Sudoku players are better than supercomputers!

Haha! I was reading my friend's issue of Reader's Digest Asia (January 2007) and this short and sweet article struck me! It's about a professor (Professor John Hopfield to be exact) discovering that we actually learn how to recognize patterns when solving Sudoku puzzles while even the best computers on earth won't learn those patterns (they'll only follow pre-programmed instructions and directly, rigidly apply given patterns). 

Here is the article, blockquoted. 

Sudoku champions be proud. The sophisticated thinking used to solve the mathematical puzzles is beyond even the most advanced computers.

Professor John Hopfield of Princeton University has been studying how we solve Sudoku puzzles to understand the process known as associative memory – our ability to spot similarities and discover patterns from limited information. 

Every time we put the right number in a Sudoku square it provides a clue, bringing us one step closer to recognising an overall pattern and solution. 

"The measure humans use for similarity is very difficult to capture in computer programmes," says Professor Hopfield. "Computers make no use of 'learning' from previous experience." 

So are you tempted to try out Sudoku after reading this? Playing a Sudoku game will then make you smarter than a supercomputer (ahem, to a certain extent). So what not try it out? If you subscribe to a newspaper you might stumble upon daily Sudoku puzzles (since most of them are for competitions they'll not give you answers).

Websudoku LogoFor the best practise you can try out Websudoku.com . It does not only give newbies a walkthrough about how to play and solve a Sudoku puzzle but it also offers you many different (in fact, billions) of Sudoku puzzles for FREE. These puzzles are computer-generated (as you can see they are symmetrical along a diagonal line drawn across the 9×9 grid if you observe carefully) and are categorised into 4 categories, Easy, Medium, Hard and Evil respectively. Try at your own risk (especially for the evil puzzles since I once took 2 days to solve! :twisted: ) Don't risk your life or anything else valuable just to complete the puzzle :razz:

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