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# 2012-11-17: Puzzle - First to solve wins

For years I've had an idea in my head about a way to hide some information in a bunch of numbers. I actually got around to coding an implementation and figured I'd run a competition. The first person who figures out what the famous landmark is described by the second set of numbers below and posts the correct answer in the comments wins $100.

## The hint

Here's a hint. The following numbers are a reference to the Eiffel tower:

3414494131

8318330128

3553552341

7775550137

5609630321

7311650141

8807750131

6015251331

0916602734

7558257862

0379994783

0777776017

1411191144

3337096487

3996677143

9161614074

6669291415

4532378867

0490877932

3838368256

9511037931

0102277291

7113117933

5779577952

1713375331

7331637136

7396967299

7710007170

3268136633

0732577722

4518318681

0562167081

6568078535

0767173684

3518171626

3017162436

7192771900

1462475170

5687748120

3466434120

1747771104

0992998920

4941149120

7257775570

4334334333

5591618600

0550653291

5451751739

6797741332

6293772327

5553655555

0166460016

9717017971

5491443445

6440627308

6370764599

0373732507

6011544825

2471554112

0347904978

2073663060

6010711610

6576776676

8903192274

9568991320

0420242624

4280890373

9878798970

4888668884

6963190661

0228882250

9293391323

4411414311

2270909269

5783587356

6991919916

9550439556

3656914283

6575707316

8378907551

3803039413

9590904954

5010955429

4082909493

4519966151

8899998888

9710919157

7592959555

1560411601

4089484094

0231626662

8855858588

2660363323

0730373720

4250304097

4761805120

0820807513

0230377271

0930362356

0703803300

9714247141

9995699559

4618111171

9703128042

9715280975

4903281330

4718635247

0315211374

8818188184

8888080185

1225585592

7873919378

2119410363

9655587182

9635819582

3148785984

7828985774

1152211222

8193638969

8197557875

0969196049

8162587169

0152551394

1163524241

8959319671

8924686591

## The puzzle

Given the above hint, what famous landmark do the numbers below refer to?

3846485744

1221979523

1041960399

1006328454

6951915911

6829888888

1043333334

1246416149

3404844444

8481482330

3701173343

3582494542

5385128784

3301939034

4501441145

5785115185

7689797777

8496449484

9482648448

2258558528

8415991919

5464114543

8468940715

2215208769

8285663118

2484471108

5482510148

1515919351

3338665863

9495940959

9331937119

1885870913

3176545353

4265819363

1151775839

0196549163

7655053593

6505084705

8200777828

9357565270

6506555655

7863986766

9615090950

9259229998

8367787738

4872149946

8184449426

4214749227

3025879497

1977970497

6662446626

4443646243

2222484422

7997229397

9662530073

4369221822

7425917596

4320525308

7269396262

9361590391

9695996969

0422300222

4190219410

0317150317

6150227019

3112279200

3678322698

0154110415

1618216628

6610318613

3371133317

8172421118

0328003020

9693091093

7889489974

4369556655

0823529404

7829087915

8629454009

8888723612

4338004092

9919708566

1375459565

9701755578

0005655562

7763939576

2228353232

5565505565

7752229572

5665858565

2222122121

0405888454

0680101460

3524111454

1604103920

0022199213

1604126404

2502704030

0022164747

4455479340

3898361652

2586873882

6754071654

2081151820

2096529356

6744773644

8458558574

2612611682

8228181872

5262266222

9044500440

2822777727

5848725946

9824108485

9621332405

5628797998

1618143347

2758484854

6995696653

6803306300

3434333334

6991307867

6434309249

6891306816

6948955114

3888621132

Post the answer as a comment below. ~~The first person to answer correctly with an acceptable explanation to how the answer was reached (rather than just a guess) wins $100, so make sure to use your correct e-mail address so I can contact you.~~

**Note #1:** People have noted that the numbers change whenever the page is reloaded. That's as expected. This puzzle is *not* an *encryption* as much as it is an *obfuscation*. That the numbers change is not important, as only the pattern in them will lead to the answer, which is of course constant.

**Note #2:** There was a bug in my post for a short while, which made the hint and puzzle basically the resolve to the same answer. This is fixed now. If you saved a copy the numbers before, just grab a fresh set.

## Solved!

The second landmark was discovered by Batuhan Bozkurt, congratulations! The challenge has not yet been met entirely, though so I've decided to set a new challenge with the same method. ~~The same $100 prize applies~~.

Redditor Bearasaurus has solved the final challenge too! For hints, check the followup post.

## Comments

Big Ben

I'm afraid Big Ben is not it. But be sure to include some explanation as to how the answer was reached, so I know it isn't just a random guess.

I "solved" your puzzle, but I assume not in the way you wanted.

After giving it quite some hours, I failed to find any specific pattern (with a reasonable kolmogorov complexity) that would lead me to an answer. But in Reddit, you mentioned that you would be interested in statistical approaches that would lead to an answer (which I assume you are interested for increasing the security of the obfuscation?) so I exploited the fact that your website gives fresh batch of numbers at each reload so I grabbed about 1000 sets (with intervals in between, hopefully not causing trouble to your website, it handled the requests like a champ) and got to cracking.

Now your HTML formatting implies 10x10 blocks of data for each set. So that was a starting point when I first began looking at the problem. The grid is 70 x 20 so that implies 14 secret codes, 7 for each row.

I looked for what was common for each 10x10 block in each of the samples I gathered from your site. I found out that for each 10x10 block some digits occasionally never appears; for example in block 0x 0y, not all digits have to appear but one always appears at least once.

Once I looked at the remaining digits (that are common in all blocks at a particular coordinate), for the "hint", I was faced by these digits:

0485130

0021739

These are the coordinates in the form of degrees-minutes-seconds (dddmmss as you gave away generously in Reddit) of Eiffel Tower.

Once I ran the same process for the puzzle, the result was:

0295845

0310804

Which is the coordinates for the Great Pyramid of Giza.

Maybe this is disappointing, I don't know. If the website hadn't provided fresh batch of numbers, this method would not work. I assume, to strengthen the obfuscation, you could make sure one digit always appears at least once; but as long as the distribution isn't random, I suppose the answer could be extracted.

I've tried many approaches before this; I'm pretty confident that the pattern is not based on neighborhood relationships (as the answer can appear on edges, though wrapping around could be employed but still with it I failed to detect any patterns). I think it doesn't have anything (or much) to do with arithmetic on the digits (like summing / subtracting them). I tried various row/column patterns and couldn't come up with anything.

I also analyzed the 10x10 blocks containing the answer digits only once (so if the answer is 0 for that block, 0 appears only once in that block). But saw no obvious pattern at all. So this beats me in that regard.

If I am eligible for the prize for my answer, I would kindly ask you to donate it to the Doctors Without Borders foundation. If you are uncomfortable about it for some reason, you can choose to donate it somewhere else you see fit.

Thanks for the challenge, and although my curiosity has been partly satisfied, I'm still waiting for the answer that will allow me to solve this using a pen and paper using a single set of numbers.

Batuhan, the answer is indeed correct. The Great Pyramid of Giza is the one I was looking for. The method you used is indeed not the one I was hoping for, as you haven't actually figured out the way the coordinates are encoded into the sets of numbers.

Still, I'm not one to dictate how the problem should be solved. I will make a donation to Doctors Without Borders for $100 in your name and post proof that I have done so.

Since I would very much like for somebody to solve the method, I'm including this static problem for a second attempt, and another $100. Being in a comment, the following set obviously does not change and encodes a third landmark.

2626513077384364666346599932245309032974209496921885110948315551555613

6549028370497764766953274173448611231555969009312435020244378244262894

9308377132331493394457637801172312372974892873367485438142538547446457

5987478672136633636156339295109196283474021313920015080695500005010510

9318473400638833698356337893287640679475088481921818727043921551931599

5758758671181690400516397336912974972974211231362065019596695870416497

1701226107698865022553554534544375771374969996927993180831110067651597

3203310324331357320447629709425333533533932743923435767555759732852649

0008077080336367751344339394399228589625005440340517458583553308156594

7467243472134765226056779555595344734475199118911888022882025906466417

0332300493776667648725560571112261196221231229957486429403779342535143

1366338577707417047142278890548676887286598087756091175002210326130060

5863902088494574497542911473583959753975898054668946115111760583633056

3673921092972792959782223331128568968982838265801286279605628360969080

5301986352763553665223261861393193111359891776463941295493449120391390

0463999640662807648743557375531417213379281451584481179187119326988940

4352555243298062697573961379660934698929891289118894828988929160129317

1871110111741174649945428445570098658283038728302510575750510526949009

3326333663020967498782260828822839081251556075505536114445618120357157

5602990599311067698721073220721651596922796029092045295295550390501233

The challenge now is to find the answer and a step by step description of how to extract the correct digits from it.

## Post a comment