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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:

1680190216

8138118813

7784884778

8778778729

7841298716

0704374379

1848680779

1040682773

1011998778

7440070451

0301031073

6542414295

4141775149

8578670495

4837215265

8922570043

5469112141

2259175449

2668686267

1133343311

9409419704

1535536581

5932439247

6018041474

5287386384

9662346717

7357046347

1123313523

3336626338

7717613768

7773737727

2429417725

5182913583

1246013723

3666218567

5832627723

7446748776

8918919868

9593565996

3333738373

9050639976

0831619376

1286018896

6930968316

2181512348

4249224992

1290191324

4974479044

1113111387

8639499497

7306314484

6087776984

0296679084

2603119030

8466946884

1099199109

1290420191

0172555515

8076526165

2356465604

8072534795

8169998183

1770943346

2294223511

4308323561

6702763669

1498273587

1191770111

6396993669

8188188161

8959982509

2787723387

1145418022

2875524796

3094688137

5774568917

1895551555

2784428778

7181881481

5475657457

3094994349

3233308339

0600505600

9966226699

1550550115

4287453479

2807855397

5770800619

1589300177

2222862197

4967067007

3191711911

8042244442

2852992928

4391968848

4952190896

8181916371

0157191659

4141761500

1171354303

4301492633

7162156733

6825494607

7974397437

5737755737

6536252663

6151114353

0400054004

7559893849

3954392615

7285892132

0906651845

1381511815

3351995135

4366643669

2282222812

4505053840

3080603838

5349849395

1441110411

5207755727

1489122170

3207651160

5449693551

1649679915

5181639555

## The puzzle

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

1456189238

4416851485

0347190910

7417526649

0056550000

4857115151

1640700646

2422822246

7416111171

2212294697

6999994079

1245808706

6674690079

9327972393

9899994797

0022200702

0777078078

7494694679

6385907329

3689231137

5253807126

0938235839

7190917909

6596956369

6015005146

3734737838

0709009927

7058945906

8333030606

0590871506

0166255503

0005550537

3343535403

7068535786

3000670603

6699641966

1055252525

7574337544

2049390024

7070170717

1475569148

1049571111

1059384120

5064586689

7575367074

3003019320

6563603635

0067760627

2616330629

1120819627

7433100627

3258908327

1572103397

2849369632

1451871961

3697699605

4456624908

4355300654

4658354868

3971663199

9396663633

9855898856

1476411477

8682880001

1541978066

9097050888

8612164036

5962959929

9541889945

1617177171

8612225882

0082000080

5500656057

4669444968

4803443638

9790771890

2473274693

4137849669

2793346933

7879356633

4094749893

3326209388

1355281877

3993229800

1247760304

9195113599

9277777777

1923619936

3999299299

7346777663

0674633260

1573325890

3781785766

5032032490

3380933890

7475585476

0220222260

3804948933

8877784787

0341777111

4933294233

2743834474

7472179747

2773160313

1641728902

4332106642

0771329591

4673112059

5462774782

8336722015

3916240906

8463782979

5434933755

3066566665

7961212299

8463688668

5512757225

9339333993

7770767057

4452446594

3333933191

8919893597

6786943154

8344892991

5748163953

3092793993

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