—- -– ‧‧ ―― -― ―– ‧‧ –— –‧ ―— –- ‧- ‧— ―- ―– -‧ ‧‧ —‧ –― ―- -― ―― ‧— ‧— –– ‧– –― ‧― -― –– -- ?
―― ‧‧ –— ‧– –― ‧― ‧— !

Inspired by ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀


1 Answer 1


There are dots and dashes, and the words "MORSE CODE" in large friendly letters in the title, so this should be obvious, right? But hang on, every letter seems to be made of two symbols which seems a bit unlikely for Morse. And why do some of those dashes look a bit odd?
Let's have a closer look:

There are four different dashes/hyphens in use here, which along with the dot give us five symbols.
Hmm, five symbols in pairs gives us 25 possibilities, which makes it likely that each pair still encodes a single letter.
We just need to work out how.

What a smart person would do:

At this point, you should notice the similarity to a tap code, guess that the dot stands for 1, and the increasing dash lengths corresponding to 2-5. Giving the following encoding grid

  ‧ - – ― —
‧ a b c d e
- f g h i j
– l m n o p
— q r s t u
— v w x y z

But I only figured that out after the fact.

What I did:

Instead I just attacked it as a simple cipher, hoping with each pair encoded a single letter.
I started with the word in the title after "Morse code" which matches the pattern ABCCDE, and could be "puzzle" or "riddle".
I also took a gamble that the question would be phrased as a question, and start with "what/who/wh* is".
That gave me enough leverage to quickly resolve the rest of the question text and its answer.

The question asked is:

What is a plumber's favo(u)rite encoding

To which the answer is:

Tap code!

And for completeness the title is:

not a MORSE CODE puzzle

  • $\begingroup$ There are 26 letters in the alphabet, your encoding excludes the letter 'k' - how did you know to leave that one out? $\endgroup$
    – Drake P
    Commented May 19, 2022 at 17:47
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @DrakeP K is encoded the same as C. I left it out of the table just to keep the columns aligned. That's just how tap code is defined - en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tap_code $\endgroup$
    – fljx
    Commented May 19, 2022 at 18:19

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