Chris Hogg, our top man in Tokyo, has a piece for you tonight. Not only can we bring you pictures of some of the people who're in it - but a BRAND NEW type of puzzle for you to try. This chap is
the self-styled father of Sudoku, Maki Kaji (it's written on his business card so it must be true). He found the puzzle in the USA and published it in his quarterly puzzle book. He sells 50,000 copies of each edition.
This is the vice president of Japan's Mathematical Association Tsuneharu Okabe. The square thing is a puzzle one of his students has invented. You are supposed to be able to turn it inside out so that there is only one colour showing. Chris writes: "As you can see
he tried to show me how to solve it - but of course I was rubbish. I failed Maths A-level and it showed."
"This is computer programmer Nobuyuki Sakamoto posing proudly with one of the puzzles he has submitted to Kaji-san's magazine and had published. Trust me in the world of Japanese puzzle making that is about as good as it gets …"
Now: here is a puzzle from the Japanese publishers who made Sudoku famous.
It is called Masyu.
These are the rules:
Make a single loop with lines passing through the centers of cells, horizontally or vertically. The loop never crosses itself, branches off, or goes through the same cell twice.
Lines must pass through all cells with black and white circles.
Lines passing through white circles must pass straight through its cell, and make a right-angled turn in the cell next to the white circle (left or right).
Lines passing through black circles must make a right-angled turn in its cell, then it must go straight through the next cell (till the middle of the second cell) on both sides.