What's your rich uncle been up to?

Greetings my nephews and nieces! I am your uncle. You may not remember me, since none of you have bothered to keep in touch, but I am coming to you with some grave news. I do not have much time left, and I need to name an heir to my sizeable fortune. You all are my closest relatives, and despite your disinterest in my life, I have decided to leave everything I own to one of you.

As far as which of you will be named, that depends on who can figure out just what I've been doing all these years. I've constructed a few puzzles with some recent examples of what I deal with. The first to determine what those things are will inherit everything I leave behind.

Good Luck,
- Uncle Phillip

Hint

Each image has 3 hidden clues, aside from the final image which has 2. The link to the next image, a number, and letters encoded in a unique fashion, meaning the way you get letters for one puzzle will not be the way to get them for any of the other puzzles.

Hint 2

The hidden number in each puzzle goes together with the hidden letters in the same puzzle.

• Why do so many puzzles involve enigmatic uncles? :P Feb 1, 2017 at 19:14
• We have 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and one of my own all about puzzling uncles Feb 1, 2017 at 19:18
• @BeastlyGerbil Uncles are the most mysterious of all relatives... Feb 1, 2017 at 19:20
• related Feb 1, 2017 at 20:35
• @BeastlyGerbil Maybe we should try to make some puzzles about Nigerian princes giving away fortunes! Oh wait... Feb 2, 2017 at 8:34

1 Answer

Clicking edit on the puzzle reveals this image (@Matt):

Solving that puzzle (@Matt):

hidden in the 3 long matchstick is the title of the next image ...

And the next image. thanks @dcfyj:

Which was solved like so by @Matt:

The next image was found in light gray text on the right by @dcfyj:

@Deusovi solved this one:

The next puzzle, as found by @Deusovi:

Was also solved by @Deusovi:

What to do with all this? OP's hint tells us that, besides the link to the next image, each image contains two clues: a number and letters that are hidden somehow.

The numbers are:

115, 118, 117 and 113. These could be ASCII values, spelling s,v,u,q, or maybe they indicate the order in which the letters must be read later. Or there could be some other meaning to them that I currently don't see.

As for the letters:

Breaking up the matchsticks into top half and bottom half gives and treating the cells as bits gives us 77 and 67, the ASCII values for M and C.
Breaking the second one in top and bottom like we did for the first one and reading the white squares as Morse gives --- and --., the codes for O and G.
There are 2 squares in the third one with red walls, while the rest are black. The letters in these cells are T and S.
The last one clearly indicates N and H (letters fourteen and eight).

Putting it together:

1. 115 - MC
2. 118 - OG
3. 117 - TS
4. 113 - NH
These are all the newest elements added to the Periodic Table in November of 2016. Your uncle is a chemist of sorts, possibly involved with these new elements in some way.

• You understood the directions perfectly. Feb 1, 2017 at 20:54
• Made this a wiki because the solutions were going by in chat faster than I could post them
– Matt
Feb 1, 2017 at 21:12
• It seems I made have missed a couple alternative solutions... I'll change a couple things for you. Feb 1, 2017 at 21:23
• Misspellings are not intentional. Feb 14, 2017 at 17:51
• The letters for the 3rd and last are correct, the rest are incorrect. Mar 7, 2017 at 20:27