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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:

5483233532

1095209059

2105355130

6407575660

1405300241

6193564703

2087216268

6758534540

6485235876

8665365083

7990907917

8727758472

5555735785

6970235983

9773769987

0246465483

3338338784

8904438769

7537575535

8184444814

5177277570

4944594454

7584964068

4147246041

7147202982

8134278098

5124979838

3462174358

2185175326

0020658423

8358678207

5023753207

2238329358

9853498453

6666661656

3225474322

4059396131

5250394418

2557344421

2557980461

1220310133

5557675775

2699696268

6024960046

2553835535

1806686165

1188831588

6666666347

1151115812

3965636345

9137886687

0521811385

9006586312

3061366362

1231373455

8900854182

6709329955

5896474485

9539959539

2544224452

5355373985

4443554425

7725262751

6322073150

6178767796

6423700805

6110701595

6303130311

5610808557

6725757726

0428022848

6176888116

3831138334

6540137092

8257139344

1785898842

4434737544

3869359383

0033037037

3333838330

8989898892

2332337742

8813788971

3885358383

4411551142

1340057572

0674458341

2803387141

3852927372

0701838183

8910304845

5789825316

0089328085

5980308252

5980333058

0041331474

8319118131

8973889799

0383230320

6516158688

7435405694

0804875218

2310878098

3588355388

7529279205

7777787717

7888778698

1020478024

7163786302

7166128265

2686916250

7125921888

7166976797

8320112312

2928828890

0385755877

7663736737

4465006465

6683360386

3765365631

9999119909

0344490986

0951899696

9992397090

9495015391

8531310389

## The puzzle

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

4649393964

7448944888

3321811081

0401510101

7545348611

7408374078

7441520725

9328940080

0408582636

7714447705

4441113441

4717451174

2606559260

0146459500

5217857445

2587283260

7525351564

4521981601

3241966894

1438268114

3431278292

1308902279

3208730057

1335252513

6496766477

6431514553

7137919917

6974580312

1677413281

6854805271

5720815281

1323535212

1555515781

3181183381

4030340033

7706564577

0902659116

2886465893

1822669480

3837459420

2636556423

6168669881

5671565116

0906669350

4443443843

5602252025

1958515999

7923632392

0560770600

7328549573

0703614844

7964781090

0360689256

8530559914

8813409152

5261296174

8422004152

2350419184

3116116521

9090404159

1121776172

8220209882

4878887404

1610919411

7306110766

3266466344

9159331915

9206385393

9910416332

7606139428

9900148114

7965936047

5221153497

0011979960

6661180106

5324923971

1081113188

6321881228

5962452949

5321999533

0614640404

7014240711

1494891348

8805858508

3130313110

3814360160

3800867286

8890822362

7820318173

7105607159

1114059568

8254130933

9452036847

0057144570

8412111244

0494040900

9164663661

1057818875

7051222770

0092303695

5502265023

1122142261

1118918198

1459212195

7383645995

8369402091

4118348421

8375063665

3651631860

5640605046

0007767000

2855353582

1162255080

2285537082

5050205800

0798357580

4200995060

0548550884

2226767726

7046550900

4531555543

0544729930

0546531180

3536783489

7534587252

8526550200

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