A computer programmer has managed to solve a puzzle that has had Irish literature fans stumped for nearly 100 years.
The question of how to cross Dublin without passing a pub was first posed by Leopold Bloom in the classic James Joyce novel Ulysses.
Computer whiz Rory McCann has managed to find a route from east to west Dublin with no Irish boozer in sight.
He told the Irish Independent: “It was something I’d been aware of and because I’m a computer programmer and heavily involved in Open Street Map I thought I’d have a stab at it.
“It’s the kind of thing you can solve with computers, so it took me a few weeks on and off in my spare time, but I had to develop a piece of software first. Once I had the software it only took me 10 minutes to solve.”
It proved impossible even for 30-year-old McCann to find a route with absolutely no alcohol on sale. His final route takes in the Guinness factory.
He said: “On it you have to walk past the corner of the Guinness brewery and people took issue with that, but you don’t go near the entrance and even at that it’s not like you can walk up and knock on the gate on the quays and ask for a pint.”
It is unlikely that anybody visiting Dublin would want to cross the city without passing a pub so people wanting a drink could take any route other than the one McCann has discovered.