History of Towers of Hanoi  

      The Towers of Hanoi is an interesting mathematical puzzle. There are 3 rods and a number of varying sized disks that can slide into any of these rods. When the game starts, the disks are mounted onto a conical shape where each disk is put one on top of the other based on its size, and the largest disk is always at the bottom forming the base.

      Édouard Lucas, the popular French mathematician invented this game in the year 1883. There is an interesting story attached to this game. It is believed that a team of eastern monks are guarding the three towers situated in a Vietnamese temple. These towers are surrounded by 64 golden rings. Calculations state that in order to complete the entire puzzle, the priests would take about 585 billions years. Once it is complete, the world would end! Due to these reasons, this popular puzzle is also called End of the World Puzzle or the Tower of Brahma puzzle.

      In this game, the player has to move all the disks to another rod by following some simple rules. You can move only one disk at a time. You need to move upper most disks from any of the rods and slide it to another rod. The disk that you move should be placed only on top of the disks that are already present in a rod. Larger disks should not be placed on top of a smaller disk.

      There is no clear evidence whether Lucas was just inspired by this legend or he invented it himself. However, with times, the legend itself has got many variations.

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History of Towers of Hanoi




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