Sudoku tips: How to solve Sudoku: The mathematics of Su Dokuhttp://theory.tifr.res.in/~sgupta/sudoku/algo.html2 of 69/9/2007 4:56 PM
hen you have eliminated the impossiblewhatever remains, however improbable, is thetruth", said Sherlock Holmes. This is the principle bywhich we put the 3 in the top row. 1, 2 and 7 areeliminated by the clues in the row; 4, 5, 6 and 9 bythose in the column, and 8 by the cell. This leavesthe truth. I don't see it as very improbable; but onemust give the master some poetic license. This rulemay or may not be useful to begin things off, but it isindispensible in the end game (especially when it iscoupled with the hidden loner rule of Step 8).
Step 2: Basic "slice and dice"
et's see how to place a 4 in the bottom right cell.The blue lines show that it must go right into thebottom-most row, because the other two rowsalready have a 4 in them. These are the slices. Nowone of the three squares in the bottom row of the cellalready has a clue in it. The other square iseliminated by dicing. The green line shows that themiddle column is ruled out, because it alreadycontains a 4 in another cell. So we have finished thesecond move in a fiendish puzzle and found out whatslicing and dicing is.
Step 3: Applied "slice and dice"
e can place twomore 4s, shownin black in the pictureon the left. Thisrequires slice and diceexactly as before.Another example: wecan place a 1 by sliceand dice as shown inthe picture on theright.
Step 4: Simple "hidden pairs"
ngus Johnson has this to say about hidden pairs:"If two squares in a group contain an identical pairof candidates and no other squares in that groupcontain those two candidates, then other candidatesin those two squares can be excluded safely." In theexample on the right, a 2 and a 3 cannot appear inthe last column. So, in the middle rightmost cell thesetwo numbers can only appear in the two positionswhere they are "pencilled in" in small blue font. Sincethese two numbers have to be in these two squares,no other numbers can appear there.