Flat Neighborhood Network Puzzle

by profhankd, published

Flat Neighborhood Network Puzzle by profhankd May 4, 2016
0 Share
Download All Files

Thing Apps Enabled

Order This Printed View All Apps

Design Tools


Liked By

View All

Give a Shout Out

If you print this Thing and display it in public proudly give attribution by printing and displaying this tag.

Print Thing Tag

Thing Statistics

671Views 108Downloads Found in Puzzles


Back in April 2000, we invented a new class of interconnection network topologies for use in parallel supercomputers: Flat Neighborhood Networks (FNNs). You can read more about them at http://aggregate.org/FNN/ -- the key property is that PCs are connected to switches such that any pair of PCs always has at least one switch in common. The tricky thing about FNNs is how hard they are to design. We actually use a genetic algorithm to design them... but now you have the chance to design them by hand as a little 3D-printed puzzle (which we originally made for our research exhibit at the IEEE/ACM SC15 conference).

Typical FNNs connect hundreds of PCs and switches; this model has just six PCs and six 3-port switches. Your task is simply to connect all the switches to the PCs to form an FNN. It's harder than it looks.... ;-)

Print Settings

Printer Brand:













A very straightforward print in PLA. More fun if you use different colors for the switches.

We also printed them on a Wanhao I3 without any issues.


Puzzle Hints

The PCs have a bump pattern on their sides that makes it obvious which PCs must be on the ends, but the order of the inner 4 PCs is not obvious. The same is true about the ordering of the 6 switches. Beyond that, each of the switches looks similar on the top and bottom. That yields 4! x 6! x 2^6 = 24 x 720 x 64 = 1,105,920 possible ways you might try to assemble them. Well, at least one of those ways works.... ;-)

As a hint, the order in which the PCs print works.

More from Puzzles

view more

All Apps

Auto-magically prepare your 3D models for 3D printing. A cloud based 3D models Preparing and Healing solution for 3D Printing, MakePrintable provides features for model repairing, wall thickness...

App Info Launch App

Kiri:Moto is an integrated cloud-based slicer and tool-path generator for 3D Printing, CAM / CNC and Laser cutting. *** 3D printing mode provides model slicing and GCode output using built-in...

App Info Launch App
KiriMoto Thing App

With 3D Slash, you can edit 3d models like a stonecutter. A unique interface: as fun as a building game! The perfect tool for non-designers and children to create in 3D.

App Info Launch App

Print through a distributed network of 3D printing enthusiasts from across the US, at a fraction of the cost of the competitors. We want to change the world for the better through technology, an...

App Info Launch App

Treatstock is an online platform that offers decentralized manufacturing services such as 3D printing and CNC machining for clients all over the world. We offer free and instant access to comparati...

App Info Launch App

3D print your favourite design with NinjaPrototype, a professional 3D manufacture with consistent quality and speed.

App Info Launch App