Identify this geometric novelty toy
January 20, 2005 11:09 AM   Subscribe

What do you call those three-dimensional geometric novelties, consisting of eight cubes, joined to each other at one edge to form one large cube, whose pieces can be flipped around to display different images on the exterior of the large cube? What is the history of this delightful object? What are the geometric priniciples behind it?
posted by Faze to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (13 answers total)
Since you're not talking about a Rubik's Cube, I can't visualize what you are tryint to describe. I feel visually stupid.
posted by ParisParamus at 11:26 AM on January 20, 2005

Response by poster: It's a pretty low-tech item, PP. It's not a puzzle to be solved, but a thing to be played with. The ones I've seen are made of wood, with paper glued to the exteriors of the cubes. Usually, the big (composite) cube will have a different picture on each side, and as you flip the cubes around, the picture mixes up, then reforms. As you flip the pieces, they make a satisfying clicking sound. I'd love to be able to give you a link, but I can't find one, 'cause I don't what these things are called!
posted by Faze at 11:31 AM on January 20, 2005

.oOo. - I think Faze is talking about something like this...., sorry for the message of the cube, but it's the only one I knew about that would be fairly easy to find...
posted by TuxHeDoh at 11:31 AM on January 20, 2005

He's not talking about a Rubik's Cube. I usually see these things around Christmas, and they're the aforementioned cubes, covered by paper, and attached by that paper to the other cubes. You fold them about for various pictures.

I have no idea what they're called.
posted by Gnatcho at 11:34 AM on January 20, 2005

As everyone else said.
posted by Gnatcho at 11:35 AM on January 20, 2005

Crap. Sorry, I totally misread that.
posted by ..ooOOoo....ooOOoo.. at 11:38 AM on January 20, 2005

Faze, I bet you would also love a Jacob's ladder if you've never played with one before.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 11:41 AM on January 20, 2005

Response by poster: That's the thing -- what tux-he-do and trharlan came up with. Don't they have a name besides "eight-sided picture puzzle?"
posted by Faze at 11:44 AM on January 20, 2005

"Origami Cube" - mystery solved.
posted by Smart Dalek at 11:52 AM on January 20, 2005

Uhh.. in case nobody else looked at the PDF, and clicked the link.

More on the "Magic Cube"
posted by Jack Karaoke at 11:53 AM on January 20, 2005

Oh! Got it. I don't have an answer, but I find them very cool; almost hypnotic in the seeming impossible way they fold.
posted by ParisParamus at 12:06 PM on January 20, 2005

Since it's already solved....What I pictured until I truly read the question: the SOMA Cube
posted by ?! at 7:46 PM on January 20, 2005

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