Creating Personalized Jigsaw Puzzles

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Cheryl Lau, Yuliy Schwartzburg, Appu Shaji, Zahra Sadeghipoor and Sabine Süsstrunk: Creating Personalized Jigsaw Puzzles. In: Computational Aesthetics 2014.



Designing aesthetically pleasing and challenging jigsaw puzzles is considered an art that requires considerable skill and expertise. We propose a tool that allows novice users to create customized jigsaw puzzles based on the image content and a user-defined curve. A popular design choice among puzzle makers, called color line cutting, is to cut the puzzle along the main contours in an image, making the puzzle both aesthetically interesting and challenging to solve. At the same time, the puzzle maker has to make sure that puzzle pieces interlock so that they do not disassemble easily.

Our method automatically optimizes for puzzle cuts that follow the main contours in the image and match the user-defined curve. We handle the tradeoff between color line cutting and interlocking, and we introduce a linear formulation for the interlocking constraint. We propose a novel method for eliminating self-intersections and ensuring a minimum width in our output curves. Our method satisfies these necessary fabrication constraints in order to make valid puzzles that can be easily realized with present-day laser cutters.

Extended Abstract


author = {Lau, Cheryl and Schwartzburg, Yuliy and Shaji, Appu and Sadeghipoor, Zahra and S\"{u}sstrunk, Sabine},
title = {Creating Personalized Jigsaw Puzzles},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the Workshop on Non-Photorealistic Animation and Rendering},
series = {NPAR '14},
year = {2014},
isbn = {978-1-4503-3020-6},
location = {Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada},
pages = {31--39},
numpages = {9},
url = { },
doi = {10.1145/2630397.2630405},
acmid = {2630405},
publisher = {ACM},
address = {New York, NY, USA},
keywords = {aesthetics, fabrication, interlocking constraint, jigsaw puzzles, minimum width enforcement, self intersection elimination in planar curves},

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