Embassy Cables





Partial Answers

AOSOUO*😗 You’ve got the right data, but you need to find a new way to extract it

GC Notes:

GC to update day-of-game.


Teams receive six postcards with windows cut in them and six cables (landscape pages of monospaced text). The text is readable but fairly nonsensical; the postcards will look something like the below:

Machine generated alternative text: - hittoric pier FOURTEEN - greetines•fr-om JACK'Slbai ROBI c' uc'ée'tcd ttc 8%'fütaC RED robin bus«h CAADENS


Each postcard has one X (see upper left hand corner of busch gardens, for example) and five regular windows cut out of it. The puzzle works by aligning the X on a letter and reading letters out of the other windows in the obvious way (left-to-right, top-to-bottom).

You determine where to align the X by looking at the all-caps word in each postcard; the caps word is a clue to a word you can find in each cable that matches a pattern. The pattern and words are as follows:

Gardens - Vegetable names: aubergine, cabbage, brussels, squash, carrot, asparagus

Jack - words that rhyme with 'jack': plaque, crack, quack, smack, snack, slack

Red - words that can be preceded by Red: carpet, cross, wine, baron, square, meat

Mirror - palindromes: civic, madam, stats, deified, tenet, redder

Vowel - All vowels: dialogue, auctioned, pneumonia, authorized, delusional, euphoria

Fourteen - words exactly 14 letters in length: administrative, ambassadorship, discourteously, glorifications, hypochondriacs, infrastructure

Aligning each postcard extracts a stream of letters, 5 letters per cable across 6 cables (cables in order 1-6 for all extractions), for 6 30-letter phrases:


These phrase point to specific letters, one per cable. Teams often just try to extract these letters, which produces the gibberish partial "AOSOUO" which they may submit in desperation. The proper way to extract the answer is to align the postcard used for extraction on the letter in question. Doing so reveals only the letters L and O in the window; with the L in the chosen font looking like the number 1, they can be taken as five-bit binary:

Gardens - 10100 T

Jack - 10010 R

Red - 00101 E

Mirror - 00001 A

Vowel - 10100 T

Fourteen - 11001 Y

Each letter is extracted from one of the six cables, and the ordering is the cable ordering; so the letter extracted from cable one should be read first, and the letter from cable two is ordered second, and so on.


No real hints needed so far.


Put links to files on the Sharepoint and any other raw data.