back to article Take my advice and stop using Rubik's Cubes to prove your intelligence

Keep me in a cupboard. When the fancy takes you, let me out and I'll do your bidding. I won't mind as long as you make it worth my while. Hmm, that didn't sound right. What I meant to say was that I would like you to put me on retainer to provide consultancy advice. Unfortunately, what I actually wrote reads back like an …

  1. Admiral Grace Hopper

    ICL - It Can't Last

    A little later than the era you describe, but the smart kids preferred Think Of A Number

    1. mahasamatman

      Re: ICL - It Can't Last

      but .. It Could Linger

      1. Little Mouse

        Re: ICL - It Can't Last

        "but .. It Could Linger"

        You mean - it kinda lingers?

        1. J. Cook Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: ICL - It Can't Last

          Did ya have to,

          Did you have to let it linger?

          Mine's the one with the cranberries CD in the pocket.

          1. Rol Silver badge
            Coat

            Re: ICL - It Can't Last

            Mines the one with a Not The Nine O'Clock News video cassette in the pocket.

            Lip lickingly funny...if you know what I mean.

    2. Jamie Jones Silver badge

      Re: ICL - It Can't Last

      ICL - It didn't last! Fully absorbed by Fujitsu in 2002, not long after I left!

    3. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: ICL - It Can't Last

      They don't make them like that any more.

      1. Bent Metal
        Boffin

        Re: ICL - It Can't Last

        Dear God, man - you can't just fling out nostalgia like that without warning, with no care to the potential effects! Now I'll have to show the kids what I grew up with, and why it's different from yet another "Funny Fails" et al on Youtube...

        (and have an upvote! Link very much appreciated)

  2. Nick Kew Silver badge
    Headmaster

    1970s?

    There was no such thing as a Rubik's Cube in the 1970s.

    OK, there was a magic cube that you could easily scramble but was harder to unscramble. I still have a vintage example from November 1979[1]. But it wasn't until 1980 that it hit the shops and acquired the "Rubik" name.

    [1] I can place it that precisely because it was my first term at Cambridge, when I regarded it as a practical exercise in Group Theory - one of the term's main courses.

    1. JulieM Silver badge

      Re: 1970s?

      If there was no year zero, then the year 1980 was actually part of the 1970s.

      1. PerlyKing
        Go

        Re: 1970s?

        If there was no year zero, then the year 1980 was actually part of the 1970s.

        Nineteen seventy ten?

        1. Daedalus Silver badge

          Re: 1970s?

          Dix-neuf cent quatre vingts alors!!!

          1. cream wobbly

            Re: 1970s?

            I shall always admire the Swiss and Walloons for their septante and huitante. It's funny to tease French nationals with and watch them pretend they can't understand, bunch of soixante-dix têtes. They're obvious words, and they make daily life so much simpler.

        2. HarryBl

          Re: 1970s?

          You are Diane Abbott and I claim my fivetyfour pounds

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 1970s?

        @JulieM; You're assuming that the definition of "the 1970s" was ever *intended* to line up with the number of (whole) decades since the birth of Christ (i.e. making it a synonym for the 198th decade).

        However, I've not seen any evidence that this is actually the case. As far as I'm aware, the 1970s is the decade comprising years whose names begin "ninteen seventy-", i.e. 1970 to 1979 inclusive. (Wikipedia seems to agree on this; treat that with as much or as little gravity as you think it warrants).

        And yes, common sense suggests that this would get a bit messy as you reach the decade overlapping 1 AD and 1 BC, but I've never seen anyone trying to stretch the nomenclature that far anyway.

        1. Stevie Silver badge

          Re: 1970s?

          Good of you to take the time to point that out AC.

        2. ThePieMan

          Re: 1970s?

          Guess the cross over would be DC = During Christ, for approx 30 years, e.g. 1BC, 1DC...30DC, 1AD etc

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: 1970s?

            Technically AD years are ordinal and not cardinal numbers - i.e. AD 1 is "the first year after the Lord became present on earth as man" so there is no AD 0.

            Also, if he was born on Dec 25 then he clearly was present on earth since conception 9 months earlier on March 25 ... so that marks the start of the year - hence lots of traditional rents etc were paid on "Lady Day".

            When the UK switched from the Julian to Gregorian calendar a 12 days were "lost" and one of the contentious issues was whether the government were requireing taxes to be paid "early" so they decided to moved the date when taxes were due by 12 days from March 25 ... and that is why the UK tax year starts on April 6th.

            1. katrinab Silver badge
              Headmaster

              Re: 1970s?

              "Also, if he was born on Dec 25 then he clearly was present on earth since conception 9 months earlier on March 25 ... so that marks the start of the year - hence lots of traditional rents etc were paid on "Lady Day"."

              He wasn't. He was born during the lambing season, so spring-time, in 6BC.

              Christmas traces its routes to a pagan festival that was re-branded to be a celebration of the birth of Christ, as they figured that cancelling it wouldn't be very popular.

              1. Teiwaz Silver badge

                Re: 1970s?

                Christmas traces its routes to a pagan festival that was re-branded to be a celebration of the birth of Christ, as they figured that cancelling it wouldn't be very popular.

                The Winter Solistice - The point in the year when the influence of the Sun is at it's weakest, or rather than point in the year at which the Sun begins once again to wax (grow stronger) - mystically usually associated with the birth of any principal Sun God * (hence why the birth of Jesus is associated with it).

                Probably was too strong an association to reassign unlike the death of Jesus (which going by the old Wheel of the year based world views should be Harvest or Halloween).

                * Some mythologies instead had a Sun Goddess instead.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: 1970s?

                  "[...] unlike the death of Jesus (which going by the old Wheel of the year based world views should be Harvest or Halloween)."

                  They went with the stronger affinity: resurrection = Spring renewal of nature. Thus the name of the Pagan Spring goddess Ēostre begat our English nomenclature as Easter - with vestigial hares (bunnies) and eggs.

            2. Bill Gray

              Re: 1970s?

              If you're an historian, 1 AD was preceded by the year 1 BC, and 1000 AD was 1999 years after 1000 BC.

              If you're an astronomer (or, I submit, any sensible human being), the year +1 was preceded by the year 0, and the year 1000 was 2000 years after the year -1000. The solar eclipse that occurred (according to astronomers) on Oct 13 -982 also occurred (according to historians) on 13 Oct 983 BC. Both are accepted schemes within their disciplines, and fortunately, there's not much room for confusion. If you enter a year as -982 or 983 BC in the astronomy software I wrote, the code can figure out which year you "really" meant without ambiguity.

              I can grudgingly accept the idea that the 20th century ran from 1901 Jan 1 to 2000 Dec 31, but only if you will accept the idea that the 1900s span from 1900 Jan 1 to 1999 Dec 31. Or that a date in 1980 would be both at the start of the '80s and at the end of the 198th decade.

          2. JulieM Silver badge

            Re: 1970s?

            No, AD includes "during" as well as "after".

            1. wayne 8

              Re: 1970s?

              Think of as "After Birth of the Lord".

              Anno Domini, "Year of the Lord['s birth]", was shorter. And avoided a messy afterbirth reference.

              The fifties flowed into the "sixties" flowed into the seventies flowed into the eighties.

              There is no precise point in time that cultural eras shifted from one to the next.

              I, myself, do not associate Rubik's cubes with the seventies. Definitely eighties.

              Arguing about zero or one being the first of a sequence. Was this ever an issue before Computers?

              1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                Re: 1970s?

                "Arguing about zero or one being the first of a sequence. Was this ever an issue before Computers?"

                I got the calculation of BP to BC dates wrong in my program for the Belfast radiocarbon lab by not taking that into consideration. I'm not sure but I think the same error was probably made when they were done by hand. It was only really noticeable when one worked out to be 1950 BP* Oops.

                * BP is Before Present. "Present" for radiocarbon dating purposes is 1950.

        3. katrinab Silver badge
          Headmaster

          Re: 1970s?

          It doesn't line up with the birth of Christ anyway, given that he was born in around 6BC. The bible says he was born during the reign of King Herod, and we know that King Herod died in 4BC.

      3. Ken Hagan Gold badge

        Re: 1970s?

        Since the AD chronology was devised in 525, we either have to accept that decades, centuries and millenia begin and end at 5, 25 or 525 years past the obvious numerical boundary (*), or we have to take a deep breath and conclude that the choice of epoch is completely retrospective and, being numerate, we may as well pick the sensible one. So ... There was a year zero, just like there was a year minus one. People at the time didn't call it that, but they didn't call year one by that name either, or even year five hundred and twenty four.

        (* Actually, I'm rather tempted by this. Its principal merit is that it would really annoy certain people.)

        1. Rol Silver badge

          Re: 1970s?

          We've gone back to the drawing board on every single metric, and redefined them in unequivocal terms. The latest being the Kilogram. So why the Star Trek system of star dates has not gained any traction to finally kill off the vagaries of our archaic and wildly interpreted year numbering system is beyond me!

        2. katrinab Silver badge

          Re: 1970s?

          At the time, people would have called 1 AD something like 28 Augustus - the 28th year of the reign of Augustus. When he died in the 41st year of his reign, 41 Augustus also became 1 Tiberius.

          Christians decided that Jesus was their ruler, and that all years and that henceforth, all years for ever more should be numbered as being in His reign. Therefore, 1 AD - 1 Anno Domini, 1st Year of the Lord.

          0th year of the reign of the Lord Jesus Christ makes no sense at all, therefore it doesn't exist.

          The year before 1 AD is the 1st year Before Christ. Again, the 0th year Before Christ makes no sense at all, therefore it doesn't exist.

          There is the small matter that the priest who calculated the years for the AD chronology got his sums wrong, so Jesus was actually born in 6 BC, but the general idea still stands.

      4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: 1970s?

        "If there was no year zero, then the year 1980 was actually part of the 1970s"

        Nearly. It was the last year of the eighth decade of the twentieth century.

    2. Stevie Silver badge

      Re: 1970s?

      I remember there was a flood of young men at parties who would challenge others to scramble their rubik's cube and then attempt to get girls by unscrambling it in record time.

      To increase the SAD factor I would, if asked to scramble, turn away from the cube's owner while scrambling madly, ignoring his smirk. Then, when he cuoldn't see what I was doing, I would give one slice a half-turn, so the middle cubes were over a corner. That done, using the pad of my thumb, I'd gently prise out one edge-middle cube (t'was easy) and invert it, popping it back into place. I'd give the cube another few pointless twists and return it to its owner.

      Then I'd make myself scarce.

      1. swm Bronze badge

        Re: 1970s?

        That's how I would solve the "Rubik's" cube. People who knew me would assume I would "solve" the cube but age and treachery beats youth and skill. I taught my son the disassembly technique and he disrupted an entire math class demonstrating.

      2. JulieM Silver badge

        Re: 1970s?

        You mean they couldn't spot an unsolvable cube just by looking at it?

    3. DavCrav Silver badge

      Re: 1970s?

      "There was no such thing as a Rubik's Cube in the 1970s.

      OK, there was a magic cube that you could easily scramble but was harder to unscramble. I still have a vintage example from November 1979[1]. But it wasn't until 1980 that it hit the shops and acquired the "Rubik" name.

      [1] I can place it that precisely because it was my first term at Cambridge, when I regarded it as a practical exercise in Group Theory - one of the term's main courses."

      Indeed. I know who you got it from as well, since he was the principal, in fact possibly only, importer of the cubes into the UK at the time.

  3. 2+2=5 Silver badge
    Joke

    1970's black-and-white

    > harking back to the 1970s, before most smartphone users were born and a time when real life in the UK was still in black-and-white

    The 1970s weren't black-and-white, more of a Fuji knock-off Kodachrome colour.

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: 1970's black-and-white

      The 1970s weren't black-and-white, more of a Fuji knock-off Kodachrome colour.

      According to my family album, the 70's were uniformly washed out and a kind of faded almost sepia brown slowly heading towards non-existance like Marty McFlys brother's head.

      Well, they are if you got all your photos developed at the Belfast Belmont labs in the 70's.

      1. Michael Strorm

        Re: 1970's black-and-white

        I've noticed that some (photo paper) prints from the 1970s seem to tend towards red and magenta.

        I'm aware that movie film "prints" (i.e. projectable positive film made from movie film negatives) produced from the early 1950s onwards turned out to have bad problems with fading over time- caused by the instability of the colour dyes used. This started coming to light around the late 1970s.

        So I've no idea if the problems with still photo prints are caused by the same issue, and when they fixed them. (#) At any rate, I'm saying that it possibly wasn't the fault of that specific processing lab.

        (#) My own photo prints- from 1983 onwards- seemed fine the last time I checked aside from some slight warming/browning, which I think might have be a property of the base paper- rather than the dyes- and was correctable via simple colour balance adjustment.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: 1970's black-and-white

          "So I've no idea if the problems with still photo prints are caused by the same issue, and when they fixed them."

          IIRC Cibachrome paper print enlargements from slides were regarded as archive quality. The contrast range was amazing - but it was expensive.

          In the 1970s I bought a colour print developer that was in a spray can. The idea was that the atomised spray acquired the required temperature from the air immediately - overriding any venturi effect. It worked but the contrast wasn't brilliant. Tricky to do in the absolute darkness that colour printing requires.

      2. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: 1970's black-and-white

        5247 FTW -- slides *and* negatives. Oregon Labs IIRC. Much less expensive than Kodachrome, but not as long-lasting.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: 1970's black-and-white

          @ Antron Argaiv; "5247 FTW -- slides *and* negatives. Oregon Labs IIRC."

          Was that one of those companies that took Eastmancolor movie stock and packed and sold it for still photography use?

          Seattle Filmworks "[sold] motion picture film that is processed using Kodak's ECN-2 process. The film was loaded into 35mm film canisters for still photography use. [..] Seattle FilmWorks also offered "prints and slides from the same roll", using cinema print film to create slides from the original negatives. These slides fade quickly when not properly stored, and are generally of inferior quality when compared to standard E6 or K-14 processed slides."

          1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

            Re: 1970's black-and-white

            Was that one of those companies that took Eastmancolor movie stock and packed and sold it for still photography use?

            Nope. ORWO actually used different process and different chemicals for colour. So I do not quite see how it could have "repacked" Eastman-Kodak.

            Black and white was of course the same, but it is the same for any film AFAIK.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: 1970's black-and-white

              "Black and white was of course the same, but it is the same for any film AFAIK."

              Processing conditions made a difference in B&W.

              The story goes that Kodak's Tri-X was subjected to extensive public testing to determine what speed rating to assign. They showed members of the public various prints and there was a fairly common choice of what they preferred.

              The public's choice had low contrast - shades of grey typical of the snapshot economical processing by consumer shops at that time.

              IIRC when serious photographers used the film they derated the speed and altered their processing times etc. They wanted the crispness of pure whites and intense blacks in a high contrast range. In their hands Tri-X was revolutionary.

              If you needed high speed then Tri-X could be "pushed" at the expense of becoming more grainy.

              If you wanted high definition then Ilford Pan-F was legendary - but the speed rating was slow.

      3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: 1970's black-and-white

        "Well, they are if you got all your photos developed at the Belfast Belmont labs in the 70's"

        You found that as well? We've got graduation photos to prove it.

    2. Potemkine! Silver badge

      Re: 1970's black-and-white

      The 1970s weren't black-and-white, more of a Fuji knock-off Kodachrome colour.

      The 70s were orange and brown. At that time, no need of a screen for a kid to stay awake with such a wallpaper. 40 years later, I'm still allergic to this color combination.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 1970's black-and-white

        @Potemkine!; "The 70s were orange and brown."

        Don't forget mustard yellow and beige. I'm pretty sure those four together were the unholy quaternity of 1970s colour schemes.

        It's surprising how quickly they appear to have gone out of fashion during the 1980s. For example, I think part of my dislike of orange then- as a child of the 80s- was as much because it appeared so dated. Whereas now I really like it for certain things, particularly if it's slightly muted. Ditto the others... *if* they're used tastefully.

        And to be fair, I *have* seen tasteful use made of such colours- and good examples of 1970s design in general that I'd be happy to live with today- but it's undeniable that a lot of it was overpowering, and indefensibly awful even forty years on. (The example you linked to was particularly vile. Please don't do that again...!)

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: 1970's black-and-white

          "Don't forget mustard yellow and beige. I'm pretty sure those four together were the unholy quaternity of 1970s colour schemes."

          How can you forget the Lime Green?

          1. Ken Shabby

            Re: 1970's black-and-white

            How can you forget the Lime Green?

            I can't, not now.

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: 1970's black-and-white

              "How can you forget the Lime Green?

              I can't, not now."

              Good! I had to spend my formative years eating in a dining room that had two opposing walls in lime green, the other two facing walls were tangerine/orange on one side and wall paper printed to look like vertical pine planks on the other. I'm nearly 60 now and still can't forget it! I feel better now that I've shared the horrible imagery :-)

    3. Chairman of the Bored Silver badge

      Re: 1970's black-and-white

      Black and white? No way, man - I saw all kinds of colors. And smoke. And the smoke talked to me, and the lines were lik... Damn! Time for another whizz quiz? Dude, not mine - I'm just holding it for my mate.

      I'm fairly certain I had am amazing time in 78 and 79, but I'll be damned if I can remember it...

    4. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: 1970's black-and-white

      more of a Fuji knock-off Kodachrome colour.

      <NOSTALGIA ON>

      Or ORWO for some of us. Both of them provided better colour reproduction of mountain and sea scenes by the way. Kodachrome always skewed it.

      </NOSTALGIA ON>

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 1970's black-and-white

        @Voland's right hand; You evidently had more luck with it than I did. I tried Orwo slide film during the 1980s and it had a distinct murky yellow cast.

        It was about half the price of Kodachrome IIRC, so you couldn't complain for the money, but even as a skint kid with relatively meagre pocket money I obviously didn't feel the desire to use it again.

  4. DrBobK
    Headmaster

    Obligatory xkcd: https://xkcd.com/457/ The best bit of evolutionary psychology out there.

    1. JulieM Silver badge

      I'd be impressed to see the man who can solve a Rubik's cube with his teeth .....

      1. caffeine addict Silver badge

        Do they have to be in his mouth at the time?

        1. Stevie Silver badge
          Coffee/keyboard

          Do they have to be in his mouth at the time?

          You stupid sod! Now I have to attend the weekend strategy and inter-group synergies meeting in a damp shirt reeking of coffee.

          Your work is done, caffeine addict.

          Well played, sir or madam. Well played.

          1. caffeine addict Silver badge

            Re: Do they have to be in his mouth at the time?

            Well played, sir or madam. Well played.

            Thank you. I like to keep my options open.

    2. Daedalus Silver badge

      The missing link

      "xkcd:" should be a registered application layer protocol all by itself!

    3. Rich 11 Silver badge

      The best bit of evolutionary psychology out there.

      That's not exactly a high hurdle for XKCD to clear.

    4. Chairman of the Bored Silver badge

      XKCD 457? In my professional opinion...

      ...the device depicted in that XKCD appears to have a front clasp. Useful thing, that. Should be fairly straightforward to go base jump into the canyon and avoid having to solve the cube entirely. Just sayin'

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah consultants, people who've never done a proper days work in their life.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Maybe this is an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone (solve two rubixes with one hand?). Old people often complain of being undervalued but the government could offer incentives to retirees who do consultancy, such as protecting pensions against any extra earnings. This would give the old dears and fellows something to do without necessarily forcing them into a 9-to-5 position. Companies would benefit from their established experience and - more importantly - less likely to be swindled by a shiny suited snakeoil salesman. Furthermore the whole thing could foster an environment where elders are more respected and given the sense of relevancy they crave.

      I've personally watched hard working metalworkers and truck drivers wither away in retirement because they have nothing to do except for wait for that occasional call from the yard when everything goes wrong. I fear the same will happen to me one day. Farmers, of course, never retire and typically die within a stone's throw of their fields but with contentment. It would be nice to learn some of that wisdom.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >I've personally watched hard working metalworkers and truck drivers wither away in retirement.

        I personally have watched consultants fresh out of Oxbridge make those said people redundant with only a few years before they make retirement, seen Office Space ?

        Meet Bob & Bob

      2. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Farmers, of course, never retire and typically die within a stone's throw of their fields

        My uncle died of heart failure in his farmhouse, in his favourite armchair, the night before the day he was due to retire. Gone before he knew it.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        You may learn that farming is hard work, especially if you've got animals to husband. No, not kind of husbandry--you there, get your mind back out of the gutter and back to work!

    2. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      You have clearly only met consultant version 1

      Version 1 consultant does not need any time to understand a new customer's business because he has already selected the solution. The solution is the one that the consultant gets the most commission on.

      Version 2 consultant does exist and a few of the more competent PHBs are able to hire them. Version 2 spends the morning listening to various employees until he works out which employee actually understands what is going on and how to fix it. He then listens to that employee and puts what he hears into a report for the PHB. The PHB then announces the content of the report as his plan (stop preventing the skilled employees from doing a proper job).

      I was lucky enough to meet a version 2 consultant early on and so discovered the technique required to get PHBs to listen: increase your hourly rate.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: You have clearly only met consultant version 1

        "I was lucky enough to meet a version 2 consultant early on and so discovered the technique required to get PHBs to listen: increase your hourly rate."

        This is the critical factor. PHBs confuse price with value. The same information could be obtained much more cheaply by asking the employees at the sharp end who are almost sure to know the answer but obviously someone on a pay grade so far below the PHB can't have an opinion of any value. By making the opinion reassuringly expensive it becomes obviously valuable.

  6. chivo243 Silver badge
    Pint

    Jezibel syndrome

    I had a cat named Jezibel, she only came around when 'she' wanted something. Sounds surprisingly like being a consultant.

    1. Hollerithevo Silver badge

      Re: Jezibel syndrome

      I am a consultant. I regularly walk into the situation Mr Dabbs describes: everything in melt-down and a fix demanded within five minutes.

      As a grey-haired web professional, I can usually spot two or three easy small fixes at once, can identify the wetware that is going to be useful (often anothe grey head in the IT dept) and the ones that are the main problem, and grasp a good-ish bit of the organisational culture. It's called 'experience'.

      Once I prove my credentials with those quick fix suggestions, which always seem to be received as if Holy Writ, with looks of stunned and relieved amazement, I start talking to employees (as another commentard suggests) and finding out what the deep problems are. I write up my thoughts and offer to stay to project-manage the solutions, that is, I own what I think and am willing to prove it.

      So far, I seem to be valued at my daily rate. It's embarrassing that it's usually common sense, knowing how to handle big egos, and 'have seen this before' that is the secret magic, and this magic commands the big bucks.

  7. James Anderson

    Did not even get the cube right!

    I count 8 blue squares -- so even the best the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation would sell could not solve this one.

    1. aje21
      Holmes

      Re: Did not even get the cube right!

      You do know that only half of the faces are shown in the picture... or are you saying that the arrangement of squares is not possible and all nine blue squares would have to be shown on the three sides in the picture?

  8. Wellyboot Silver badge

    Virtual wind - brilliant.

    I'm guessing hauwei went quiet after a little testing indicated a lot more development down the line.

    Throwing a real world usage case at them was a bit mean, think of all the fun other passengers will be missing :)

  9. Keef

    The world turned colour much earlier...

    Sometime in the 1930's

    http://calvin-and-hobbes-comic-strips.blogspot.com/2011/11/calvin-asks-dad-about-old-black-and.html

    1. Hero Protagonist

      Re: The world turned colour much earlier...

      Possibly my very favorite C&H ever

  10. macjules Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Intelligence?

    Yes, a giant Rubik's Cube might have attracted some attention on the day but not necessarily for the right reason or with the intended result

    I would be even more impressed if Huawei had put on display a SOLVED Rubik's cube.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Intelligence?

      Given a Lego Mindstorms can solve a Rubik's cube, it's really not that intelligent. Also it's a well-understood algorithm.

      Now, if they were introducing machine learning that could be given a Rubik's Cube without any understanding of it, and learn independently to solve it in a manner other than brute force, that would be impressive.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Intelligence?

        "Given a Lego Mindstorms can solve a Rubik's cube, it's really not that intelligent. Also it's a well-understood algorithm."

        I thought the Rubik's cube was the perfect analogy for AI mastery - it looks impressive if you don't understand the problem to be solved.

  11. Teiwaz Silver badge

    Impress the girls with your snake...?

    I had far more fun with SNAKE (sometimes known as Rubiks Twist)

    Unfortunately the only 'girls' impressed were maiden great aunts.

  12. Giovani Tapini

    A consultant to consultants

    That sounds a great job.

  13. Dabooka Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Great music selection this week Dabbsy

    Have you hacked my Google Play account?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Most consultants in my experience are expected to walk into unfamiliar situations and understand completely what's going on immediately. They must then propose an ideal outline solution within seconds and provide a comprehensive report within days before being booted out the door as soon as possible because they're expensive.

    Whereas most consultance seemed to walk into any situation and propose a series of unfamiliar changes ... along with the recommendation/suggestion that they are retained to run the "preparing for change", "implemting change" and "dealing with change" training courses that will be needed (along with the intention that the final "dealing with change" stage will result in a new cycle of changes to keep the money coming in)

    1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      I think you are confusing consultants and consultancies.

      The latter are the ones where the (mainly sales) staff get shouted at on Monday morning to go out and get more billable hours. The former are the non-retained individuals who will actually do the work.

  15. CreepTheWolf

    But what if someone can solve it a rubik's cube in 20 seconds.

    I am a 16 year old high-schooler, and I only read the title, so I'd just like to point out that the Rubik's Cube is how I prove my intelligence. I am able to solve the Rubik's Cube in about 20-25 seconds under the right conditions (it's not cold where I am, I'm not tired, etc). So, now I'd like for everyone to give me attention and feed my huge ego, thank you.

  16. Martin an gof Silver badge
    Linux

    Bilidowcar

    Blue Peter neu Magpie? Pah!

    Bilidowcar!

    M.

  17. Ian Emery Silver badge

    Apart from Rubic Cubes not being 1970's, they are still on sale and still modestly popular today; we have only one left in stock after a run over Black Friday "week".

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Magpie vs Blue Peter

    No contest, Magpie had Jenny Hanley

    1. Yet Another Hierachial Anonynmous Coward

      Re: Magpie vs Blue Peter

      No, no, no.

      It was parents who thought their kids should be watching Noel Edmunds on Swap Shop, and the cool kids who wanted to watch Sally James in leather and denims on Tiswas.

      I still have a thing about custard pies, 40 years later......

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Several of my bosses thought my "downtime" a waste of resources and wanted me to use if for their "useful" unrelated tasks.

    They didn't understand that technical consultants live off the fat of their experience. That has to be renewed in their down-time - otherwise they eventually become out of touch and lose their edge

    To hit the ground running in an emergency takes constant practice where a misstep isn't a fatal failure.

  20. Manolo
    Headmaster

    What's the Russion connection?

    "Giant Rubik Cube at Huawei mate 20 launch in London

    What were they thinking? That much is obvious: they were thinking about something else. Perhaps the consultant who came up with the idea was pitching to a Russian client while working on the Huawei account and got distracted."

    Shurely you mean a Hungarian client?

    1. kventin

      Re: What's the Russion connection?

      well, look at the coloured squares a bit and let your mind wander -- you might start thinking of tetris, which is a russian game which took the world by storm via hungary, so, if you squint really hard, the connection game / russia / hungary is there, although it connects as a usb the other way but what the hell, it was friday and eastern europe is confusing for westerners (there's also 3d clone of tetris called blockout, equally addictive, written by Poles. now i'm just trying to confuse you even more, as if there was any need. oh and poland and hungary aren't eastern but central europe. or are they?)

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