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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:

4890612636

2061410847

7372532844

5867892949

9999990994

4726412647

0461661046

6669606862

7739437749

9818444659

3409876236

2836017039

7485074631

1665116651

7478184713

3793377339

6963014036

8922545928

8271960201

6683451091

4294959139

0328658194

3171110171

7477878734

6699069091

1105011509

6080558076

1497763916

1021119379

1902287557

1801529011

1407110114

5672556555

8679776776

4897288389

8021510255

8146212566

7176261243

8176094323

0517307401

4171333311

9547005005

0555885550

8156283851

6116166611

2805805885

0423333450

4134881414

6855758565

0105329508

6803852418

9657849239

6874883785

2837755728

9299747299

9998949586

5455494455

0474777604

1941477695

1480045555

8743074445

3825677484

8014899696

8921711501

7420969871

2708395539

1371833503

9999139531

3123393511

0615115006

0618161803

2572732577

5313705148

0456529449

8730530890

2493437445

9555535495

4434353144

7797900729

8270827888

9889829849

4216062122

1682662586

2181021081

5826757565

4286706106

4686848264

2886999781

4611609091

2121653018

5969985946

1041745632

5926352936

6914255046

3239772932

6669665946

2727670628

8985989956

6525757028

6839562837

7884602862

6291242460

8250651827

3355553582

1197941967

7447467424

2819441832

2220002220

3478497289

8148436167

3144527737

8676526712

8281318318

3426534462

2094220190

1648441448

8178474448

4269942946

8272686862

7360909469

2680558080

7270583206

2771584361

8779943381

4282901362

0367669908

## The puzzle

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

3193449513

3309039280

3632602631

4502554720

0511659585

2606452423

9240535725

5717509223

7016634630

5618023327

4856311992

5468620295

1814585493

7618517718

0356353525

4854344555

1463466434

5524662555

8008098084

8384382823

4483384314

3999930999

2181430793

2536128023

0643080013

9824692398

3689424309

5155030541

4447774174

1140416402

5633936389

0584830509

9607936142

9990736472

5535116169

9387636422

2458099991

2198223549

2158305832

8348187561

8138331313

4446886444

2394293222

2114042149

3358131335

2240025240

9888948892

9323983399

7232574253

3800273293

1807274890

7810283290

2447804583

8513175342

3433443334

4050303034

3129626349

9653336933

3128341108

7058376255

4673612145

4153319497

3053394081

4223505290

8968453466

1493655297

2008457678

2268555268

5166313696

4000400450

7527757277

6998090668

0666306630

8844888342

1091101801

8677979686

6204670386

1361776802

5559509601

0434651106

0795108146

0954348501

0313111501

1471469204

9617271107

7313371293

0054048504

9139413497

0016171801

9091019101

7930530636

9535774360

3573875866

0728635826

8896535698

8797994178

6663676662

4432445326

0980830890

8294001544

4112622548

8969945204

2370871205

8722778244

6724202274

0009809408

1515581525

3292325397

3422882483

7770407773

3099290333

8379793798

8000749479

3072203766

3420202288

3999483340

3402819359

7961377619

5789057993

9334844839

7303737730

9333703412

1660309184

7363802794

5389095965

9961877303

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