# An engineer, a mechanic and an athlete walk into a bar

...to exchange puzzles about the thing they talked about the other day and have a drink.

The engineer showed these numbers:

2, 8, 14, 2, 99
2, 4,  0, 0,  1


The mechanic drew this:

The athlete presented the following sequence:

1 1
0 1
1 0
0 0
0 1
0 0
1 0
0 0
0 1
0 0
1 0
0 1
1 1


What is the thing they talked about?

Hint 1:

The answer is 3 words. The answer to each person's puzzle is 1 word. The professions of each person relate to the answers of corresponding puzzles.

• Just some quick things I've noticed right off the bat: the rightmost depiction in the mechanic's image depicts the big dipper constellation, and the leftmost looks like a 2D representation of a 4D cube. Commented Sep 20, 2023 at 14:05
• @TylerSelden The other images are probably rot13(cvr (cv) naq na e fdhner, juvpu yrnqf zr gb oryvrir gurer vf fbzr pvepyr fghss tbvat ba). Not sure what exactly to make of it though Commented Sep 20, 2023 at 15:07
• I'm thinking that the r is supposed to be rot13(evtug nybat fvqr gur cvr, fb gung vg fnlf "cvr e-fdhnerq," gur nern bs n pvepyr.) Commented Oct 19, 2023 at 12:58
• @Qise maybe rot13(na nygreangvir pbhyq or gung gurl ner sbbgfgrcf, va juvpu pnfr vg znl unir fbzrguvat gb qb jvgu gur avar fgrcf vg gbbx?) Commented Oct 20, 2023 at 5:20
• Riding off of Qise's comment, looking at the athlete's numbers made me think of rot13(ehaavat/whzcvat uheqyrf. Jvgu gur "fgrcf" nppryrengvat/qrpryrengvat ba gur raqf, naq yrncvat uheqyrf va orgjrra ba gur 0 0 cnvef.) Commented Oct 21, 2023 at 0:56

I think they were talking about

Hirohiko Araki's Steel Ball Run.

The engineer's word is:

Steel: 2, 8, 14, 2 and 2, 4, 0, 0 correspond to the electron structure of iron and carbon, which, in an alloy with a 99-to-1 ratio forms steel.

The mechanic's word is the one I am least confident in:

Ball: The pictures are, in order, a 4-dimensional cube, pie, r-squared, and the negation of the Big Dipper, which is part of Ursa Major, the Great Bear. $$4 \pi r^2$$ is the surface area of a sphere, or a ball and a mechanic encounters ball bearings often; removing the bear gives ball.

The athlete's word is

Run: As in the comments, the numbers correspond to a running pace where 1 signifies a foot on the ground and 0 signifies otherwise.

Combined with the literature tag, I think this is right.

• Providing an answer to a previously unanswered question is always acceptable. Commented Jan 22 at 23:31