How to escape a maze – according to maths


Category:  Other

Via:  hallux  •  one month ago  •  9 comments

By:   Ruth Dalton and Nick Dalton

How to escape a maze – according to maths
Mazes are in vogue at the moment, from HBO’s Westworld, to the return of the British cult TV series, The Crystal Maze. But mazes have been around for millennia and one of the most famous mazes, the Labyrinth home of the Minotaur, plays a starring role in Greek mythology.

To be or not to be amazed.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

There are techniques for escaping from mazes, but first you need to be sure what kind of maze it is. Most methods work for “simple” mazes, that is, ones with no sneaky short-cuts via bridges or “passage loops” – circular paths that lead back to where they started.

Which begs the question: what is the difference between a maze and a labyrinth? Although considered synonymous by some, it is generally accepted that a labyrinth contains only one path, often spiralling around and folding back on itself, in ever-decreasing loops, whereas a maze contains branching paths, presenting the explorer with choices and the potential for getting very, very lost.

While designing a maze can be a rewarding human task, computer scientists and mathematicians have a love of maze-generating algorithms. The algorithms tend to fall into two principal types: ones which start with a single, bounded space and then sub-divide it with walls (and doors) to produce ever smaller sub-spaces; and others which start with with a world full of disconnected rooms and then demolish walls to create paths/routes between them.


jrDiscussion - desc
Freshman Principal
1  seeder  Hallux    one month ago

Get lost!

Professor Principal
2  Kavika     one month ago

Amazingly lost.

Professor Principal
3  JohnRussell    one month ago

I'd climb up to the top of the hedge and walk out. 

Oh wait , it's still a maze even from the top.  I'm screwed. 

PhD Principal
4  devangelical    one month ago

locally, the cornfield mazes are popular at harvest time in the fall. my only experience with a maze was a 2 day installation project at a mansion in the 80's. the owners had to assign one of the housekeeping staff to me because I kept getting lost in the fucking grotesque display of wealth they called a home.

Paula Bartholomew
PhD Guide
5  Paula Bartholomew    one month ago

I became fascinated with mazes when I visited England.  I began designing them for fun.

Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
6  Buzz of the Orient    one month ago

How to get through a maze?  Follow a mouse. 

Paula Bartholomew
PhD Guide
6.1  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @6    one month ago

I entered a maze once with a date (6'4" Basketball player) and of course we got lost.  He simply put me on his shoulders so I could visually guide us out.

Masters Participates
6.1.1  r.t..b...  replied to  Paula Bartholomew @6.1    one month ago

Heads and shoulders above the rest. 

Paula Bartholomew
PhD Guide
6.1.2  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  r.t..b... @6.1.1    one month ago



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