Aauugghh - no one I've been able to find in the Bay ARea has the 4^3.
If anyone is flying in from Boston, BRING SOME! Several other of
Ideals new stuff is out here - including the game "Rubik's Race", some
of the Puzzle pens, and the 2^3. The latter uses the sliding disks
on an internal sphere mechanism, by the way. If one comes apart, it
seems difficult (but not impossible) to get back together.
Anyway, the only really worthwhile new Ideal thing is Alexander's
Star, which is a worthy addition to the sliding axis puzzle field. It
is a Great Dodecahedron in form, and each "star", that protrudes from
a pentagonal face, rotates (5 positions). Each face (the pentagons, not
the stars) is monochromatic in the solved state. It is colored with 6
colors, opposite faces the same. (Look in a decent geometry book for
a picture of a great dodecahedron. It's one of the 4 Kepler-Poinsot
regular concave polyhedra, this one having 12 pentagonal faces
interpenatrating each other in a star-like manner). It's not too
hard to solve, the main difficulty is figuring where each piece goes.
(Each moving piece is the triangular wedge which can be found between
the points of a stellated dodecahedron, which "turn it into" a great
If anyone knows where to get the 4^3 out here, or is coming
visiting and can bring one, my phone number is (415)326-7788,
if you can't get at a terminal. My work number is (415)497-2577.
-- Stan Isaacs