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Author Topic: Why arenít jigsaw puzzles puzzles?
David Holt
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posted December 30, 2014 02:32 PM     Profile for David Holt   Author's Homepage   Email David Holt     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Are they or arenít they?
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Marco Salvalaggio
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posted January 14, 2015 05:37 PM     Profile for Marco Salvalaggio   Author's Homepage   Email Marco Salvalaggio     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
This is a good question, David. One that's haunting me for some time now.

I'm trying to compile a catalog of puzzle patents registered in the XIX century and I stated some rules to discern the one I'm interested in.

Essentially I look for mechanical puzzles that require ingenuity and have complete information. For example I don't consider puzzle locks (that don't have complete information) or dexterity puzzles (that require skills), but I take in consideration sequential movement, disentanglement and interlocking puzzles.

Jigsaw cause me a problem. I tend to not consider them puzzles, but I can't find a good reason to turn them down.

I have included construction puzzles that are 3D jigsaw in all respects because they seem to pose a challenge, albeit simple. A 2D jigsaw is just a matter of trial and error, it requires patience but nothing more. Or so it seems to me.

Moreover in the XIX century the jigsaw were very simple with just a few pieces. A childish toy, nothing to be puzzle about.

The question is open for me, I don't have a definite answer but I'm leaning towards NO.

Bye, Marco

P.S.: Ironically, in my mother language, italian, the word 'puzzle' designates just the jigsaw (while 'rompicapo' means puzzle in general)


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Roland Koch
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posted January 15, 2015 10:57 AM     Profile for Roland Koch   Author's Homepage   Email Roland Koch     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I regard them as puzzles.
They pose a challenge, train your brain. A good puzzler solves them with structure and logic and there is hardly any trial and error as they match shape, colour, function of each piece before they place it.
As for trial and error in my experience a lot of puzzles (brain teasers) get solved this way. (take the Soma cube as example - most people I know would just start with one piece and try until they find a solution - if they are patient enough).
Actually I think they are good puzzles as they keep you busy quite a while, make you want to find the solution (finish it), make you feel good when you finsish them, have an appealing design, can be played by many people, are generally good value for money, have an obvious goal, are solvable if no pieces are missing...

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Roland "KNOX" Koch
www.knoxpuzzles.com
www.geduldspiele.ch


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Marco Salvalaggio
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posted January 16, 2015 05:05 PM     Profile for Marco Salvalaggio   Author's Homepage   Email Marco Salvalaggio     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I see what you mean and I agree with you if with 'puzzle' we indicate "something that requires a solution and can be solved in structured way".

This is a pretty good definition but a little too general. For example ordering a deck of cards can be considered a puzzle if we adopt it.

I give a more restrictive meaning to the word puzzle; it has to be something that perplexes the player, something that challenges not only to find a solution, but also to understand how it works and why it could be solved that way.

Jigsaw lacks this perplexing element and for this reason I have difficulty to call it a puzzle.

Obviously this is only my view and I don't pretend that is universally accepted

Bye Marco


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George Bell
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posted January 23, 2015 04:29 PM     Profile for George Bell   Author's Homepage   Email George Bell     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I didn't realize there were so many patents on jigsaw puzzles. I have not looked into these patents.

I've often wondered how jigsaw puzzle designers design the pieces so they can only fit in one particular place, irrespective of the pattern matching. It seems the shapes chosen can only go together in one way, even if you solve it upside down! So I would say Jigsaws Puzzles are definitely puzzles!

I myself have thought of designing a jigsaw puzzle such that copies of the puzzle could tile the plane. Not just in the trivial way, but so that the "edge pieces" would interlock with the edge on the opposite side. Such a jigsaw puzzle would have no edge pieces at all, in the normal sense of the word.

[ January 25, 2015: Message edited by: George Bell ]

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http://home.comcast.net/~gibell


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Alex Mason
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posted February 01, 2015 08:08 PM     Profile for Alex Mason   Author's Homepage   Email Alex Mason     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I dont think they are puzzles, but it's just me, a lot of people would disagree. Cuz personally I find jigsaw puzzle to work on trial-error and pure visual basis. I can be half asleep and still can worm myself through a jigsaw puzzle, of course in a much longer time than when im awake and alert. Other puzzles, however, require high concentration at all time. I always think of "puzzle" as something that you have to use a lot of brain power to solve. Just me
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David Holt
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posted April 22, 2015 07:18 AM     Profile for David Holt   Author's Homepage   Email David Holt     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I think we'd be interested to read more about the various patents you'd discovered on jigsaws Marco.
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Lionel Depeux
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posted January 06, 2016 07:06 AM     Profile for Lionel Depeux   Author's Homepage   Email Lionel Depeux     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Alex Mason:
personally I find jigsaw puzzle to work on trial-error and pure visual basis.

Basically, I do agree. But this description also applies to the "matching edge" kind of puzzles, which I believe everyone here would consider as genuine puzzles, right?!

So... what makes jigsaw puzzles different from other kinds of puzzles?


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Jacques Haubrich
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posted January 09, 2016 02:56 AM     Profile for Jacques Haubrich   Author's Homepage   Email Jacques Haubrich     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
We live in a strange world:
A burr is a puzzle but
a jigsaw puzzle is NOT a puzzle.
Doesn't it all depend on how you or I or anybody defines 'puzzle'?

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Emma Lee
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posted January 09, 2017 01:09 PM     Profile for Emma Lee   Author's Homepage   Email Emma Lee     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I guess if you take it literally a jigsaw puzzle is indeed a puzzle by definition.... "Jigsaw Puzzle = a game, toy, or problem designed to test ingenuity or knowledge"

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Games2Puzzles


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Daniel Deschamps
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posted January 14, 2017 04:41 PM     Profile for Daniel Deschamps   Author's Homepage   Email Daniel Deschamps     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
They are certainly a type of puzzle. I do not find them that interesting even if I have some special one in my collection but I have to consider them puzzles. If we say that jigsaw are not puzzles, then what about 3D jigsaw puzzles or 3D crystal puzzles or 3D wooden puzzles or even Berrocals? They all involve trial and error and observation skills to solve. I am pretty sure that nobody will say that a Berrocal is not a puzzle!
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Lionel Depeux
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posted April 23, 2017 06:49 AM     Profile for Lionel Depeux   Author's Homepage   Email Lionel Depeux     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Daniel Deschamps:
I am pretty sure that nobody will say that a Berrocal is not a puzzle!

So am I... But then, would you call a Berrocal "a jigsaw puzzle"?!

I never would.


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John Rausch
Chief Metagrobologist
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posted May 29, 2017 02:28 PM     Profile for John Rausch   Author's Homepage   Email John Rausch     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Some of the jigsaw puzzles by these guys go way beyond the two tabs and two slots of the typical jigsaw puzzles. When most people think of jigsaws, they visualize the organization of a picture, not the assembly of pieces. Most of these puzzles turn that perception on its head.

Nervous Systems

[ May 29, 2017: Message edited by: John Rausch ]

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John Rausch


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Lionel Depeux
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posted May 30, 2017 02:15 AM     Profile for Lionel Depeux   Author's Homepage   Email Lionel Depeux     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
The "MichŤle Wilson" French range of jigsaw puzzles is considered very difficult, even for puzzles that only have a small number of pieces. This is because they're hand-cut and without any standard kind of cutting.

I also remember a range of jigsaw puzzles that was available in some stores, 15 to 20 years ago. I think the brand was English and the puzzles came in racing green cardboard boxes. There were very oddly-shaped pieces and tricks involved, such as "split-corner pieces", straight edges inside the puzzles, or even some pieces shaped like objects. I think this scheme was based on unusual 19th Century jigsaw puzzles. I cannot remember the actual brand, though...

[ June 03, 2017: Message edited by: Lionel Depeux ]


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Jacques Haubrich
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posted June 02, 2017 12:17 PM     Profile for Jacques Haubrich   Author's Homepage   Email Jacques Haubrich     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Probably, you are referring to Wentworth puzzles.

quote:
I also remember a range of jigsaw puzzles that was available in some stores, 15 to 20 years ago. I think the brand was English and the puzzles came in racing green cardboard boxes. There were very oddly-shaped pieces and tricks involved, such as "split-corner pieces", straight edges inside the puzzles, or even some pieces shaped like objects. I think this scheme was based on unusual 19th Century pjigsaw puzzles. I cannot remember the actual brand, though...[/QB]

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Daniel Deschamps
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posted June 05, 2017 04:45 PM     Profile for Daniel Deschamps   Author's Homepage   Email Daniel Deschamps     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
The PAR hand cut jigsaw puzzles where sold in green boxes and now fetch prices around $2000 each!
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Lionel Depeux
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Member # 159

posted June 06, 2017 03:50 AM     Profile for Lionel Depeux   Author's Homepage   Email Lionel Depeux     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I think the brand I had in mind was more Wentworth: "Par" just does not ring any bell and I know the name was definitely sounding English. I will have to unearth the one(s) I have, so as to make sure. It might even be old catalog items that have long been sold out (I must have purchased those about 20 years ago).

But thank you both for the recollection!


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Christin Kuefer
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posted June 14, 2017 02:56 AM     Profile for Christin Kuefer   Author's Homepage   Email Christin Kuefer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
puzzles are not easy always
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