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Showing posts from June, 2016

Solving the SETI Decrypting Challenge

I spotted a challenge to decode a message received from a star 50 light years away. Well, at least a message that pretends to be from a star 50 light years away. The idea is if we were to receive a message like this would we be able to understand it. 
The message is 1,902,341 binary digits. Clearly that needs chopping up in some way so I factored it and its prime factorization is 7 × 359 × 757. I suspected that the message was either an image or multiple images. After a bit of fiddling around (initially I thought it might be a single image made of 7 colours overlaid) it turned out to be 7 images of size 359 × 757.
The code I used to generate the images below is here.
The first image confirmed that we were going to see 7 images of size 359 × 757 as it has a horizontal white bar at the top spanning the width and a vertical column on the right giving the height. This first image is a sort of 'frame' indicating that correct way to view the images.

The second image has the number …