Department of
Mathematical Sciences
Colloquium Series
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"Some Questions on Hex"
Ryan B Hayward
Department of Computing Science
University of Alberta
Hex is the classic connection game invented by Piet Hein and, independently, John Nash. For years, Hex has intrigued gamers, mathematicians, and computer scientists. For nxn boards there exists a winning first-player strategy, but (other than for small boards) the win/loss value of particular opening moves is not known. Recently, the winning value of two 10x10 opening moves was found. I will describe how, and then discuss some questions:

Hein designed Hex to be fair. Did he succeed? How close are computers to solving 11x11 Hex?

An expert offers you 10-1 odds to play 11x11 Hex. To make it interesting, she offers you first move, plus a 1-stone handicap (so you can play two stones on your first move). How much should you wager?

You have 8 hours to write a program to play Hex. What algorithm should you use?
Monday, 14 April 2014
3:10 p.m. in Math 103
4:00 p.m. Refreshments in Math Lounge 109
Spring 2014 Colloquia & Events
Mathematical Sciences | University of Montana