Your friend in band class has been writing on a piece of paper, then hands it to you. On the paper reads:

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

What message is encoded into the numbers?


Your friend's sheet music is in Eb and the lowest note they can play on their instrument is an Bb.


I used two reasonings, and always ended with a slightly cryptic message, namely


The first method was to look up this chart


and using the six bottommost circles of the patterns in "part 2", I interpreted the message as

"CACBED", which made no sense, until I remembered that a "B" is actually called "H" on the German scale

The other method was a brute force dictionary attack on a substitution cipher. First, I read the data as columns, because reading it as lines would give the same letter three times in a row. Then, the pattern of the letters is "121345".

Assuming that the music theme is of some relevance, I then searched my spell checker word list (Ubuntu's "british-english-insane", with the last bit referring to the number of words included) for words consisting of names for musical notes that match the letter pattern "121345". I found two, and the other one was "AFACED", which isn't really a dictionary word. The other match was, of course, the same word as found by the other method.

Std. disclaimer: I may very well have made a mistaken assumption somewhere along the way, since the resulting message is a bit opaque, to say the least.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Other vaguely music related words with that pattern are adagio, bebops, evenly, fifths, ninths, oboist, pipers, mambos, A major. Not sure if this helps... $\endgroup$ Mar 7 '18 at 11:45
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Pupils eyeing papers: cockup awaits. Gigues awaken babies. Vivace amazes. Idiots cackle. :-) $\endgroup$
    – Bass
    Mar 7 '18 at 12:15

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