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My saved puzzles

Contact & About

Sudoku Puzzler is created by Ian Riensche.

You can email him at ian@sudokupuzzler.com

I first stumbled upon Sudoku in 2005 when an article about Sudoku appeared on the front page of The News Tribune. Sudoku was still fairly new in the western hemisphere then, so the article essentially introduced the game of Sudoku to the TNT readership and explained that from that day on it would print a daily Sudoku puzzle. I had just graduated the year before with a bachelor of science in electrical engineering and a math minor, so I was keenly interested in the analytics of Sudoku. I clipped out the newspaper article and sent it to my dad, but kept a copy of the Sudoku puzzle for myself. Over the next week I set about to crack Sudoku, applying all the math I had learned in engineering school, such as linear algebra. I couldn't break Sudoku using the mathematical tools I was familiar with, but I eventually came across an article in Dr. Dobb's Journal that explained the concepts of exposed and hidden pairs, and that set me on the path to building a legitimate Sudoku solver. Over the next couple of years I tinkered with the computer program and added more sophisticated graph analysis, such as X-wing and others. Pretty soon I had a Sudoku solver that could not only solve most published Sudoku puzzles, but also generate Sudoku puzzles of pre-determined difficulty levels.

In 2007-08 I created the book, "Sudoku for Lunch" and it was published by Tate Publishing in 2008. In 2009 I sent in a copy of my book, along with a cover letter, to The News Tribune, offering to provide them with Sudoku puzzles. After a couple of months the managing editor wrote back that he wanted to meet with me. Apparently my timing was excellent. It turned out that they had recently canceled the daily Sudoku puzzle they had originally been running, due to a massive price increase, and were searching for a suitable replacement. They had tried one or two others, but those were deemed too easy by some of the TNT's readers, so those hadn't worked out. Long story short, they were interested in having me create Sudoku puzzles for them. My Sudoku puzzles hadn't been vetted yet, so the TNT had a special panel of Sudoku players test them to ensure they were up to snuff and would meet the rigorous demands of the TNT readership. They passed with flying colors and the TNT began printing them about a month later. The next year, The Olympian, which is a sister newspaper to the TNT, was included. The happy irony is that the newspaper that introduced me to Sudoku in 2005 is the very same newspaper that I began creating Sudoku puzzles for, four years later.

Over the years, I've been contacted by various weekly newspapers, and have supplied them with Sudoku puzzles, only requesting a credit in return. I have provided Reader's Digest Canada with Sudoku puzzles since 2015. If you have questions, please email me at: ian@sudokupuzzler.com. If you would like to find out more about my syndication services, head over to my Sudoku Syndication page.

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