# Bad news keeps coming in

This rebus directs you to a 7 letter word. If you solve this, you might be able to solve

It's a small word after all!

What is the word?

Hint

It is related to Word

Hint 2

• I'm not convinced that the rebus tag applies here. There don't appear to be different components to fit together into a phrase, since your target is a 7-letter word. Dec 6, 2021 at 15:47
• @IanMacDonald You will arrive at the word after some components are put together. But I see your point.
– DrD
Dec 6, 2021 at 16:12
• Does this need the [knowledge] tag? Dec 7, 2021 at 1:56
• I do not think so. Once you identify what you are looking at it will get kind of easier.
– DrD
Dec 7, 2021 at 11:59

So I thought the answer was:

UNICODE

UPDATE But now I understand the answer is

OMICRON

Explanation Part 1 (bear with me):

The positions correlate to the locations of keys on the keyboard (per hint 2), and the color denotes the locations, which was a little hard to decipher, except orange was clearly "0" as the zero key clearly is on upper part of the keyboard and is the larger button on the number pad. Similarly the "ALT" key is the only key in two places like the indigo rectangle in the approximate location. And from there I was roughly able to approximate the location of the other keys in relation to those two from there.

And the result from part 1:

When put in order of the colors (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet) is o03bc ALT x.

Which I found very confusing until... Explanation Part 2 UPDATED:

I realized the ALT X was hint. If you take the 03bc (ignoring the "o"), highlight it, and press ALT + X (in Microsoft Word, per Hint 1), it converts those characters into the Unicode character "μ" (the Greek letter MU, which is also the symbol for a MICRON). If you then add the "o" back on you end up with "OMICRON" which is a new variant of COVID-19 which is... "BAD NEWS" (eg: the title). And "bad news keeps coming in" because we keep getting new variants of COVID. Nice one, @DrD.

It ties into It's a small word after all!:

μ (MU) is the correct answer to the puzzle you mentioned. I didn't realize this at fist (because I didn't even look at the link), so I questioned if μ was the right character, but this confirms it.

Possible error in image:

There are 6 rows on a keyboard and the first row contains the "F Keys" not the number line (as shown in the image). I suppose you could consider it separate as there is typically a gap in between the number line and the F Keys. Either way, it proved only a minor stumbling block.

Defense on calling it a rebus:

While on the surface, it might seem not to be a rebus, when you consider the colors correlate to key locations and the key locations REPRESENT a Unicode character which when converted and adding the "o" back in you arrive at the word "OMICRON", I would consider it of the spirit of a rebus puzzle. The letters were merely masked with colors to indicate order, which added a little fun challenge. In short the image converts to the Rebus "o03bcALTx".

Great puzzle! Thanks!

• Wow. Great analysis and great thinking. You are almost there. rot13 Gur jbeq vaqrrq vf B03OPNygK. Lbh sbhaq bhg jung 03OPNygK vf (zvpeba). Vs lbh nggnpu B va sebag gura lch trg gur Onq Arjf!
– DrD
Dec 8, 2021 at 0:00
• @DrD rot13 Bu fb lbh zrna gung vg snvyf gb pbaireg gur punenpgre jvgu n b vafgrnq bs n 0 va sebag, naq gur reebe vf jung lbh zrna ol "onq arjf"? Dec 8, 2021 at 0:08
• BHAVPBQR = BZVPEBA naq BZVPEBA vf???
– DrD
Dec 8, 2021 at 0:18
• @DrD Ah, I got it. I went a different direction. I'll update. Dec 8, 2021 at 0:22
• @Quark-epoch Sure! I believe I covered them, but they may seem a little buried, so I've edited and added references to which hints they cover for clarity. You'll find them in explanations parts 1 and 2. Dec 8, 2021 at 9:55

Notepad? We see a literal notepad with the blue lines and notes, and notepad.exe is indeed related to Word. "Notepad" is also 7 letters and found on your laptop.

• Hello @C8H10N4O2. The image shows you a color pattern on specific locations on "something" related to Laptops and Desktops. That is the starting point. The image as well as the Title is a clue. Thanks
– DrD
Dec 7, 2021 at 16:23

(this is totally rough and really impulsive so please don't downvote if you disagree because I came online on Puzzling SE after a almost a year of inactivity)

Windows ... which obviously is a 7 letter word.

Explanation

The other puzzle you linked to has mu as the answer, I related the first letter of (m)u to (M)icrosoft who also happens to make Word (which is one of the hints) as well as the Windows Operating System we all know and love. Moreover we use it with our laptop and desktop as an OS thus relating it to the second hint.

10 Squares in the answer (windows 10) , 7 different colours (windows 7) ( with some repeats as the OP said). It all adds up to Windows. Also bad news keeps coming in could refer to Windows 11 which I personally find to be heavily bugged and trash right now.

(edited from previous)

• rot 13 Qb lbh frr nal cnggrea va gur pbybef? Ubj znal ner gurer?
– DrD
Dec 7, 2021 at 19:49
• 10... OMG I FIGURED IT AAAAAAA Dec 7, 2021 at 20:33
• Npghnyyl 7, jvgu fbzr ercrngf!
– DrD
Dec 7, 2021 at 20:35
• got it , editing answer Dec 7, 2021 at 20:36
• check edited, its 2am here so i gotta sleep, will rephrase and rethink about it tomorrow post college. Dec 7, 2021 at 20:41