Saturday, April 18, 2009

Wired magazine - the Mystery issue

The latest issue of Wired is a Mysteries and Puzzles issue, with guest editor J.J. Abrams. It is filled with a number of obvious puzzles, and articles about various mysteries, puzzles, and other related topics. It was a good read overall, but I'm obsessed with one particular aspect of it.

They stated quite a few times throughout that there were various clues hidden throughout the issue (one time saying there were 15), and that the issue itself was a meta puzzle of some sort. I've found a number of things that I think relate to that, and NOTHING about it on the 'net as a whole yet, and am wondering if I'm scanning WAY too deeply or not.

First and most obvious, there is a Lost-related page in the middle that looks like an ad at first glance, and doesn't SAY it's a puzzle... simply a page with some numbers on it, but a quick glance around shows the upper right corner has an image of a lottery ticket with the 4 8 15 16 23 42 numbers on it. The rest of the page has a series of numbers which might relate to any number of things, on which I have a ton of theories...

Numerous other things I've noticed might be clues, or might be me seeing patterns where there are none...

Also, quite a few odd things as well... for instance, at the bottom of the rants page, it says 'we no longer acccept rants at the phone number (67)24-552-8464, so don't call it."

Um, really? ok, that is an odd thing to say, and I'm almost sure it is some type of clue, or was just a tongue in cheek comment that has become a major red herring for me... :) But I DID call, not being able to resist, and of course, it's left to right not a valid number... 672 doesn't seem to be an area code in the US, it could be a country code and a valid number, but doesn't match any of the other non-us numbers at the front of the magazine, and it's inclusion as a number specifically not to call almost BEGS you to either call it, or otherwise make use of it....

Then there are the bright orange "START" blocks, of which there seem to be 10, with a black bar and an odd orange bit that starts at distance from the start that the last orange part ended, if it's size and/or position are at all relevant, I've not been able to grasp the meaning... and if they aren't, they've consumed a lot of brain power I could have spent elsewhere. :)

The obvious puzzles throughout are relatively easy to figure out, with a bit of thought, but think, if there is a meta-puzzle, or a meta-meta puzzle (which, btw, is listed as jargon in a Jargon sidebar, with a comment about Microsoft and MIT organizing meta-meta puzzle hunts.

The Test boxes with the 6 black boxes that are orange 1 at a time, except in the 2nd case, where 2&3 are both orange... this is the "how we rate" section, and you'll notice that some of the letters are ever so slightly emphasized... These letters, in order, are: "tvBranDshiftspaytwosteps" ... TV Brand shifts pay two steps? Does that make sense on its own, or possibly an anagram of something? OBVIOUSLY, though ,that is relevant in some way...

And the scattered appearance of the JJA puzzle logo, trying to find a pattern in that, too, but so far that is eluding me.... I really wish I knew if any of it was really this deep, or if I'm making it far more complex than intended... somehow, though, I don't think I am.

2 comments:

Adam Boyd said...

tv brand shifts pay two steps = RCA!

Shift each letter in the word 'pay' by 2 'steps', and p becomes r, a becomes c and y becomes a (it wraps around to the beginning of the alphabet)

mike said...

apparently parts of the magazine with the dots and dashes are supposed to be Morse code, but i have yet to figure it out...