16
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The symbols below appear to be some sort of nautical symbols: waves, sails, lighthouse markers, waterfall markers, directional markers, etc.

The spots are labeled with red letters, but the red letters have no meaning other than to label the spots, so that you can more easily refer to a symbol.

Each of the five spots marked with red question marks contain one of the shown 11 symbols.

Which symbols go in those 5 spots?

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ Something to do with the flag alphabet? $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor May 28 '15 at 19:16
  • $\begingroup$ @randal'thor nothing at all. everything that you need to solve this is in the symbols themselves. Googling and/or outside information will not help you. $\endgroup$ – JLee May 28 '15 at 19:16
  • $\begingroup$ Really nice visual puzzle. Very "nautical" indeed ;c) $\endgroup$ – BmyGuest Jun 4 '15 at 17:34
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K = C
L = I
M = G
N = G
O = I

Because the squares represent:

the letters that spell out the phrase "ONE PLUS FIVE IS SIX".

Specifically, each square is constructed by:

1. Drawing each uppercase letter, in white on black
2. Cropping it down to the minimal bounding box
3. Breaking up the resulting black shapes and rearranging randomly
4. Collapsing duplicate shapes into one, with a number indicating how many of that shape you need to use

Via reconstruction, the original would have looked something like this:

one plus five

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  • 5
    $\begingroup$ How on earth did you solve that? $\endgroup$ – LogicianWithAHat May 29 '15 at 10:13
  • $\begingroup$ I'd guess he noticed it from the 'E' character, if you see that, and the 'O' becomes apparent, you have a 'puzzleable' (is that even a word?) patern $\endgroup$ – Tim Couwelier May 29 '15 at 10:38
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    $\begingroup$ @LogicianWithAHat - I had a hunch that each row represented a word, given the different lengths, and thus that each box was a letter. From there, the "E" (as Tim Couwelier mentioned) and the right hand part of the "S" grabbed me as looking letter-like. Then the "O" gave me the numbered duplicates bit. $\endgroup$ – Alconja May 29 '15 at 13:28
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    $\begingroup$ The reconstruction of the letters from the exact pieces made this an outstanding answer! Good job! $\endgroup$ – JLee May 29 '15 at 17:17

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