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Sudoku Utilities by Jonathan Olson sudosolve is a utility that takes in a Sudoku puzzle and uses a number of human-usable logical solving techniques to try to solve the puzzle. It will display each step, and optionally show graphically what pattern (technique) it uses. It will output a grid for each step into one postscript file total, or one svg file for each step. Installation: Notes (2013-09-20) for building (on Ubuntu 12.04): sudo apt-get install libgtkmm-2.4-dev sudo apt-get install libplot-dev make sudosolve Sudoku: It is a puzzle on a 9x9 grid split into 3x3 "boxes". Each row, column and box must have each digit 1-9 in it exactly once. sudosolve uses a large number of solving techniques up to "simple coloring", which is extremely difficult to spot most of the time. There are many many more solving techniques out there. Input: on standard input, type in left to right then top row to bottom row, each digit (or if there is no digit, just a period '.'). Once you type in 81 characters, it will have read the puzzle. Example: .4398.25.6..425...2....1.949....4.7.3..6.8...41.2.9..382.5.........4...553489.71. Here are quick descriptions of the techniques: Simple Naked Single: If a row, column or box has only one cell open, it is uniquely determined as the only number not seen in that row, column, or box (from hereafter called a 'unit'). Unit is highlighted, cell is colored light blue Naked Single: If a cell is in the same rows, columns, and boxes with eight other digits, it must be the remaining digit. No units highlighted, only cell is colored light blue as in a simple naked single. Hidden Single: If a unit (row/column/box) has only one place a digit can be, no other digits could be there. Hidden Singles are spotted fairly quickly by human players with crosshatching. Unit highlighted in gray. Identified cell highlighted in red, and the candidate in a stronger red. Cross-hatching squares are in light cyan. Naked/Hidden Subset: Includes Naked/Hidden Pairs, Triples, and Quads. Essentially, if N cells all in one unit contain only N possible digits (called candidates), then those candidates may not exist elsewhere in the unit. Unit darkened slightly. Removed candidates highlighted in green. Subset cells are darkened even more. Pointing (Pair/Triple): If all cells for a candidate in a box are in a row or column, the candidate can be removed from all other places in the row/column not in the box. Unit is lightly highlighted. Removed cells are highlighted in violet, candidates causing the pointing pair/triple are highlighted even more darkly. Box-Line Interaction: If all cells for a candidate in a row/column are in a box, the candidate can be removed from all other places in the box which do not intersect with the row/column. Very similar to Pointings. Unit(s) is lightly highlighted. Removed cells are highlighted in magenta, and candidates causing the interaction are highlighted in a darker color. N-Fish: Generalization of X-Wing, Swordfish, Jellyfish and Squirmbag patterns. if N rows have their candidates constrained to at most N columns, all candidates in those columns and NOT in those rows can be eliminated. Vice versa for columns/rows. Major units are darkened, candidates belonging to both sets are darkened even more. Removed candidates are highlighted in orange. Simple Coloring: By looking at conjugate pairs (places where a digit must be in one of two spots), these can be chained together to determine whether (a) another candidate is impossible for both situations, and (b) whether one of the situations is false. Colored cells in either red or green. Removed candidates darkened, and identified cells have candidates highlighted in white Y-Wing: See http://www.sudokuwiki.org/Y_Wing_Strategy Output in general: each Output-classed object stores a list of what primitives will be displayed (numbers, highlights, outlines, etc). It seperates these out into layers so that no matter what order these primitives are added, highlights will still be below the numbers and grid lines. Each pattern can write to output in general without having to know what type of output it is. Output formats PostScript: (psout.h/cpp) Designed so that 6 grids fit on a page at once. It also dynamically handles different sized fonts by examining the actual bounds of all of the digits and averaging them together. It is programmed by including a "header" of handcrafted postscript made to generate the grids, and then a generated lower part which positions the grids and adds numbers/highlights/outlines etc. 6 fit on a page since having sometimes 60 pages for one puzzle seemed excessive, and they fit nicely. All of this makes it the best looking on paper, and is the most fine-tuned. Most fonts should look centered in the cells. SVG: (svgout.h/cpp) Here each grid is output to a different graphic, possibly useful for animations. It only supports Helvetica, since it unfortunately includes manual spacing data for general placement, which would change from font to font (one of the main disadvantages as opposed to PS). Basically all of the coordinate logic is contained within the SVG creation code, as opposed to the postscript code (where all the creation code has to do is specify row, column and color of common things). They both use the same scale for the grid, but have slightly different font properties and thus are somewhat customized. Display options: Candidates For each cell, this shows the list of possible digits that could be placed here (or more clearly, have not been logically eliminated from consideration). This is necessary for most of the more advanced solving techniques, and is thus required if patterns are displayed. Patterns This displays for each step in the solution what technique was used to reduce the puzzle. They are graphically described above. Keys These are central to generating sudoku grids. By starting with a completed grid, one can remove digits until the puzzle is no longer solvable. By knowing which patterns people will use, and what digits these patterns depend on most, a Sudoku generator can create different difficulties of puzzles, and even create puzzles which depend on a certain type of technique. They are displayed by outlines. Deep red means only this digit's removal is necessary, while lighter red or pink means that one or two extra digits would have to be removed with this digit to get rid of the pattern. Font The postscript output is designed to use a variety of fonts. The "Adobe 35" fonts should be available. Example use: ./sudosolve --postscript --patterns --candidates --prefix output/ptest_c --font=Helvetica < puzzles/gr23xwing (assuming puzzles/gr23xwing is in the dot-format) (will write to output/ptest_c.ps) Other (not directly related) programs: gui2 (currently in the heavy development way-pre-alpha) is a Cairo-based gui (which takes commands very similar to postscript) which was used since I saw it was used in firefox. It has a fairly large number of commands all bound to keys. gui2 just reads in the same dot format from standard input. NOTE: "make gui2", and you NEED the cairomm library to compile. Here is a list of key bindings: 1 through 9: if candidates are being displayed, display ONLY the candidates whose number keys are being pressed down right key/mouse wheel down: view next pattern left key/mouse wheel up: view previous pattern a: apply a pattern (remove candidates, etc) c: toggle whether candidates are shown C: permute the puzzle into "canonical" form (ie an equivalent puzzle mathematically that has the lowest lexicographic value) f: fully solve with my logic-based steps (all steps will be undo-able) F: toggle showing the backtracked/dancing links solved solution. (brute force) G: generate a random complete grid (NOTE: biased) k: toggle whether keys are shown l: toggle whether links are shown (conjugate pairs, discussed in simple coloring) o: output (standard output) the dot format for the current grid O: output (standard output) a custom hex-based candidate format (not used yet) p: randomly permute the grid to a mathematically equivalent puzzle s: next pattern r: naively generate a random grid u: undo last step (works for most any steps) U: FULL undo, back to the start MORE IMPORTANT mouse controls: if candidates are NOT shown: clicking on a square highlights it. Typing a digit puts the digit in that square if candidates ARE shown: left click a candidate to make it the cell's digit right click a candidate to eliminate it either: mouse wheel scrolls through detected patterns It will not allow you to make a wrong move if the puzzle has a unique solution.