Sunday Times Teaser 2878 – Magic Slides
by Victor Bryant
Published November 19 2017 (link)
I have a toy consisting of eight tiles that can move by sliding them around a three-by-three frame:
1 2 3
4 5 6
At any stage a tile adjacent to the space can slide into that space. I gave the toy to my grandson in the state illustrated and after some moves he presented it back to me with the space once again in the bottom right-hand corner but with the “2” (amongst others) not in its original position. Furthermore, his arrangement had some “magical” properties: each row, each column, and the diagonal from bottom left to top right all added up to the same total.
What was his arrangement?