33
$\begingroup$

My roommate (rm) always looks busy in front of his laptop, so I try to start talking to him

Me : "Hey, You always look busy, so how do you entertain yourself? Do you have a favorite book, movie, or music?"

Rm : "Yes I do"

Me : "Wow, cool, then, what is it?"

(He keeps typing for a while..)

Rm : "This"

\setcounter{page}{0}
You\hspace{0.2cm}will\hspace{0.2cm}not\hspace{0.2cm}find\hspace{0.2cm}any\hspace{0.2cm}secret\hspace{0.2cm}ingredients\hspace{0.2cm}here\newpage
\setcounter{page}{1}
\foreach\s in{1,2,...,5}{\newpage\mbox{}}\newpage
\setcounter{page}{1}
\foreach\s in{1,2,...,114}{\newpage\mbox{}}\newpage
\setcounter{page}{1}
\foreach\s in{1,2,...,430}{\newpage\mbox{}}\newpage

Me : "What.. is that?"

UPDATE

I know my roommate is showing me the code not just to show off but beacuse he is answering my question

Hint 1

Me : "Of course this is LaTeX! My computer don't have LaTeX compiler, but I can compile it online using Sharelatex.. just put it in the right place.. then use a necessary package.. and voila!! Gosh.. Why don't you just give me this *.pdf file in the first place?!"

Rm : "Great question!"

Me : "Wh..What?!"

Hint 2

Me : "Hey, can you give me a hint for "5, 114, 430" part?"

Rm : "What are those numbers?"

Me : "What? these numbers are in your Latex code, you look like separate the pdf into three section with 5, 114, and 430 pages respectively"

Rm: "Oh, I see, no those are not my intended number, you see it wrong. And also the pdf is not separated, it is continous"

Hint 3

Me: I'm still curious with these numbers. If you just want to show me these numbers why don't you just put it on a single page instead of creating a large number of pages?

Rm: You are wrong again, it is more than just numbers. Blank pages with a number on each page, does it remind you with a certain type of book?

Hint 4

Rm: You know, I think you can find the answer by making a list of keywords. Some user here already mention it, I'll help you:
the sentence : ____
the code : _____
the latex : ____
the book : _______
the number: ____
Because my favorite is a popular one, I think you can find it just by remembering

Hint 5

Me: I didn't get it, in the last hint you said I can get keyword from "the latex" and "the code", what's the difference?

Rm: Because it will give you different clue, the keyword from "The Latex" will tell you there are two editions of my favorite and I choose only one of them. the keyword from "The code" part will tell you the theme of my favorite.

Me: The theme,.. so it must be about IT guys or Math isn't?

Rm: What, no.. see the Hint 1, I give you the source code is on purpose, you will lose it if you just looking the pdf file. Actually someone in here already mention it, scroll it once again

Hint 6

Rm: About the numbers.. It isn't three different sequences, it should be one sequence but it restarts twice at some point. Why? LinuxBlanket has a good view. You'll find two numbers from those hundreds at the beginning and the ending of my favorite.

*If there are grammar errors, please tell me to fix it, the puzzle will not be affected with the grammar

$\endgroup$
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ You have got a pretty cool roommate! $\endgroup$ – Sid May 4 '18 at 4:59
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @Nank well if we take this code I don't think it would be able to compile : 3 lines are missing \documentclass{document_type} \begin{document} the code provided \end{document} would be the bare minimum $\endgroup$ – Kant1 May 4 '18 at 16:26
  • 8
    $\begingroup$ The compiled $\LaTeX$ document is available here. Pecularities to take note of: \hspace{0.2cm} is used instead of simply a space, and the blank pages are split up into 1..5, 1..114 and 1..430, plus the first page (numbered 0). $\endgroup$ – Birjolaxew May 4 '18 at 20:59
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Since underscore length is not random, it probably corresponds to ROT13( ahzore bs punenpgref. Jvgu gung, gur obbx xrljbeq (7 haqrefpberf/punenpgref) znl pbeerfcbaq gb "pbbxvat" fvapr va na nobir pbzzrag BC zragvbarq gung pbbxvat jnf bar bs gur xrljbeqf, be "wbheany" fvapr wbheanyf unir nyy rzcgl cntrf. "gur ahzore" znl pbeerfcbaq gb "qngr", fvapr va bar nafjre gung fnvq gur ahzoref ercerfrag qngrf, BC zragvbarq gurl tbg gur ahzore cneg (nyzbfg) evtug. "pbqr" pbhyq or "yngrk", yngrk xrljbeq pbhyq or "pbqr" be "gvxm" (gur cnpxntr lbh arrq gb eha gur pbqr) ) $\endgroup$ – abagh0703 May 20 '18 at 6:21
  • 6
    $\begingroup$ Could we ask for even more hints? As I feel having these 4, we are still ages away from the solution. $\endgroup$ – Bálint Budavölgyi May 22 '18 at 9:28

25 Answers 25

17
+100
$\begingroup$

One more attempt. Now I think that his favorite

book is "Martian"

Explanation. Now we know for sure almost all the keywords (confirmed by the author of the question)

the code (5): space (since there were hspace instead of a normal space); the latex (4): book; the book (7): journal; the number (4): date.

We also know that the only missing keyword - the sentence keyword is

related to cooking

We also know that his favorite is very popular and there are two versions of his favorite; we have to choose one of them according to the latex keyword. And now (almost) everything suddenly fits.

Indeed Martian is a very popular bestseller about space; it exists also as a movie; the protagonist has to cook and to grow plants to survive.

The only missing detail is the connection between numbers 5, 114, 430 and his favorite.

Edit by nickgard, to explain the numbers (contains spoilers for the real world thing that is the answer):

The page numbering resets at what would be 6, at what would be 120, and ends on what would be 549.

Sol 6 is Mark Watney's first journal entry after being left on Mars.
Sol 120 is his first journal entry having made it to the rover after the hab disaster.
It's Sol 549 on Mars at the time of his last journal entry when back aboard the Hermes.

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  • 5
    $\begingroup$ I've made an edit (pending review) to explain the numbers. I'm pretty sure this is the correct answer. $\endgroup$ – nickgard May 27 '18 at 9:45
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @nickgard nice! $\endgroup$ – Oleg May 27 '18 at 9:51
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Congratulation!! you got the correct answer, actually "space" is the first part of the puzzle which mentioned in here, but somehow it's forgotten. I'm sorry if the intended answer is not as good as the others. I appreciate for all feedbacks given to this case. Hope I can make better puzzle in the future :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 27 '18 at 14:10
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @malioboro I think it was a great puzzle, we have all enjoyed a lot. The good thing about this puzzle is that it's very difficult to find an answer, but once you find it suddenly all the clues and everything make sense. Thanks a lot! $\endgroup$ – Oleg May 27 '18 at 15:27
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Yes! I'm glad the answer was found, at the end :D I feel like it was a good teamwork! Nice puzzle! $\endgroup$ – LinuxBlanket May 27 '18 at 18:32
23
$\begingroup$

Your roommate's favorite

movie

is

Kung Fu Panda (2008), since in the movie Mr. Ping says "The secret ingredient is... nothing!", which is similar to what the code in the question says, that is, "You will not find any secret ingredients here." The quote from Mr. Ping is here: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0441773/quotes.

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Welcome to Puzzling! This is a nice answer :D $\endgroup$ – ABcDexter May 4 '18 at 12:23
  • $\begingroup$ wow, I always surprised with the problem solving skill here, but I'm sorry the answer is no, number of critic can change all the time :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 4 '18 at 13:08
  • $\begingroup$ @malioboro thanks, I've updated my answer :) $\endgroup$ – daneel May 4 '18 at 13:13
  • $\begingroup$ sorry but kungfu panda is not the answer, that is one of my favorites :) you have notice the numbers, right? so try it as another clue $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 4 '18 at 13:58
18
$\begingroup$

I don't know what LaTeX is, but I executed the provided code and now I have

A pdf document with 550 pages. They're all blank except the first one which says "You will not find any secret ingredients here." This was probably evident from the code for anyone familiar with LaTeX.

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  • 8
    $\begingroup$ This answer looks more like a comment to me, or am I wrong? $\endgroup$ – Thimo Demey May 4 '18 at 10:32
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ No, if you think that is the answer, actually my roommate is really answer my question :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 4 '18 at 11:28
  • 19
    $\begingroup$ +1 for the reckless determination you've shown, running code in an unknown (to you) language for the sake of solving a puzzle! :) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 4 '18 at 11:38
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @ThimoDemey I'd call this a partial answer, I think. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 4 '18 at 11:49
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ What about the 5, 114, 430 pages in the source? $\endgroup$ – Alfe May 4 '18 at 12:10
15
+50
$\begingroup$

Is his favorite movie:

21 (2008) because if you order the numbers of the pages you end up with 01511141430 (0, 1-5, 1-114,1-430) and if you add up those individual digits, the result is 21. Also, there are 7 hspaces in the LaTex, so 7 spaces, which sounds very similar to Kevin Spacey, who features in the film. Lastly the movie is all about counting cards and math, and LaTex is often used to format math problems.

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  • 5
    $\begingroup$ +1 "7 spaces sounds like Kevin Spacey." (wow) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 11 '18 at 16:29
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ +1, not the correct answer, but you've found "something" but unfortunately you see it differently, and if you see the blank pages the written page number not just 0,1,5,1,114,1,430 there more than that $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 11 '18 at 21:28
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Easily the most entertaining answer. $\endgroup$ – jsm May 14 '18 at 16:06
9
$\begingroup$

(Partial answer) Your roommate's favorite:

Movie (or book? or music also) is: The Matrix

First of all:

The main character is a computer hacker who finds out that he's the chosen one. I bet your geek genius roommate thinks he matches this character.

The clue in the code:

The code is written in $\LaTeX$ and has a clue: "You will not find any secret ingredients here". Believe it or not, the original Matrix code in the movies is actually a Sushi Recipe.

The problem with the code:

The code as it is, cannot be compiled, because it is missing compulsory lines like \begin{} and \end{}. One of the main lines in Matrix - Revolutions is: "Everything that has a beginning, has an end". In this case the code has neither.

The three sections (5, 114, 430):

The Matrix Trilogy obviously has 3 chapters, just like the pdf, that the code generates. By the way the three numbers also can represent a mathematical matrix. Further meaning of the numbers is still unclear.

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ +1 this is the best try so far, I've expected someone will answer the matrix from "code" and the clue from the first page. Without the number this answer will almost fit the puzzle, but not the answer, the number still unsolve and actually there are more hidden clues :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 9 '18 at 10:15
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Interesting. Especially considering this: thematrixminute.one/minute-114-youre-empty $\endgroup$ – jsm May 9 '18 at 10:24
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ And minute 5 tells everything about this puzzle: thematrixminute.one/minute-5-trinity-chase-thats-impossible :D $\endgroup$ – Bálint Budavölgyi May 9 '18 at 10:43
  • $\begingroup$ I also thought that it could be this. In a way, you cannot "be told what the answer is, you have to see it for yourself". $\endgroup$ – cinico May 9 '18 at 11:09
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ I love this answer purely because of the sushi fact! $\endgroup$ – jsm May 9 '18 at 14:54
8
$\begingroup$

Haven't quite figured it out, but I want to share my progress.

I notice that

the code is in fact $\LaTeX$ code, which is typically used to typeset works. This is confirmed in other answers and hints. Thus, your roommate has a favorite book that we are looking for.

Now, looking at the code, what stands out is that

it consists of three loops. Since it is given in the first hint that the code is more important than the result (a PDF file with mostly empty pages), I believe this is important.

Another observation about the code is that

a package needs to be included before the document can be compiled, namely TikZ.

Combining the above two observations, I'm thinking about

clocks:
• The hands on analog clocks loop around the clock face all day long.
• A clock TikZ (ticks) while doing so.

Then, looking at the fourth hint and using that the number of underscores is relevant, I have:

the sentence (4): room
the code (5): loops
the latex (4): TikZ (ticks)
the book (7): journal
the number (4): ???

In the above, I got

room from the sentence because there is white space (room) between the words. The sentence says that you will not find any secret ingredients here, but the room between the words seems significant (explicit \hspace{0.2cm} instead of regular spaces);
journal from the fact that the PDF generated from the given $\LaTeX$ code contains empty pages, like a journal does. Moreover, a journal tracks events over time, which is related to the clocks.

I'm stuck on what the answer could actually be.

 

Some observations I made about the numbers, that haven't gotten me anywhere:

The numbers themselves are not important according to the second and third hints. However, they do increase in value. Might hint at passing of time? Also, summing the digits of the numbers 5, 114 and 430 gives 5, 6 and 7. Out of those three, the only one with four letters in English is five.

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  • 3
    $\begingroup$ If it can be of help, LaTeX is created in 1983, the first major release is in 1984 and the second (and current) is in 1994. Now, in "1984" the protagonist writes a diary, but I don't know the relevance of this information... @BálintBudavölgyi just to let you know :) $\endgroup$ – LinuxBlanket May 23 '18 at 13:42
  • $\begingroup$ I was thinking about ROT13(Gur Qn Ivapv Pbqr), but there are more than the two books OP mentioned. Although, there are only TWO MOVIES. $\endgroup$ – franx93 May 23 '18 at 14:10
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ great answer! I like you observation, you got correct for "the book" you almost say the correct answer for "the code" :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 23 '18 at 14:50
7
$\begingroup$

Maybe I got it now:

Simove, Shed. Fifty Shades of Gray

Explanation

The book is all blank pages and each page is gray shade, I think this corresponds to a Hex code of that color, thats why all pages are numbered

The language is Latex because Latex clothing is related to sex fetishes and the movie/book Fifty shades of grey.

And the phrase "You won't find any secrets inside", corresponds to that you won't find any sex secrets(tips) inside.

And as you said, it's a popular one!

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  • $\begingroup$ nice answer, but it is not the correct one, actually explanation of your first answer is on the right track :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 17 '18 at 3:58
  • $\begingroup$ does it mean that rot13(ahzoref ner ercerfragvat n pbybe)? $\endgroup$ – Bálint Budavölgyi May 17 '18 at 8:50
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Oh no, the latex part fitted so well :( $\endgroup$ – Gustavo Gabriel May 17 '18 at 11:15
  • $\begingroup$ @BálintBudavölgyi I think he means the other answer I posted... $\endgroup$ – Gustavo Gabriel May 17 '18 at 12:02
6
$\begingroup$

Could his favourite

movie

be

Snow White and the seven dwarfs ?

Because

You have seven little spaces of 0.2cm, and a white page.

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  • $\begingroup$ could you explain this further $\endgroup$ – Wen1now May 7 '18 at 10:31
  • $\begingroup$ I like this idea a lot $\endgroup$ – gl_prout May 7 '18 at 13:20
  • $\begingroup$ woah, very nice answer, but why you conclude it is a movie? there are also book editions. And.. snow white is also not intended answer, how about the number and the sentence in the first page? :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 7 '18 at 14:34
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ True, and if we think about the order in the question it should be the book first... but the book is less susceptible to be someone's favorite ^^ $\endgroup$ – Nomis May 7 '18 at 15:55
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Off the top of my head I can think of only one movie (as an adaptation of a book that I've read) that I actually prefer: Inconceivable!!! $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 0:51
6
$\begingroup$

This is definitely a big stretch and probably wrong but it was fun to try. Is it

the Bible

because

if you take the numbers 01511141430 (0, 1-5, 1-114,1-430) as Londin did, and use the calculator letter list translating numbers on a calculator pad to letters (since Latex is math-related), then you get the letters O/Dx5,I,S,Hx2,I,E. If you put this through an anagram solver assuming that the 0's are O's not D's, one of the words is "Ooiishi", which when translated can mean "Kishi" which is a figure in the Old Testament

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  • $\begingroup$ wow you've done a great research, but this is not the correct answer, you need to see my comment in Londin's answer $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 15 '18 at 4:45
6
$\begingroup$

Your roommate's favorite

book

is

The Diary of Anne Frank (movies are also based on this). A diary is a type of book that can have several blank pages with a number on each page, which is similar to the pdf generated by the code. On the first page of the pdf generated by the code, the words "You will not find any secret ingredients here", refer to the fact that Otto Frank (Anne's father) had a business selling Opekta (i.e., pectin), which is an ingredient used in home-made jam (the "secret" ingredient in home-made jam). The words "You will not find any secret ingredients here" could also be used to refer the fact that Anne Frank was in hiding and this sentence is along the same lines as what might be told to someone looking for her, i.e., you will not find anyone here. There are three number ranges (i.e., 1-5, 1-114, and 1-430), since Anne Frank wrote her diary in three volumes. I'm still working on the meanings behind the numbers 5, 114, 430, but I think they might have something to do with the dates that Anne Frank began and finished writing the volumes of her diary, or maybe they correspond to pages of her actual diary (although I don't think her actual diary is 430 pages long), or maybe they correspond to significant events in Anne's life.

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  • $\begingroup$ good answer! but not the correct answer :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 15 '18 at 4:43
6
$\begingroup$

Updated answer based on the hints and discussion:

Given the fact that LaTeX was used (rather than any other language), this suggests

a book, or a bookmaker

The document starts at page zero, rather than page 1, which is unusual for a book. This contains the text "You will not find any secret ingredients here." The blank pages numbered 1-5, 1-114, 1-430. It must be significant that the numbering restarts like this, rather than being continuous. The 1-114 is significant, since this is the number of pages in a

one year diary or journal (52 weeks in a week-to-view format)

"The Latex" will tell you there are two editions of my favorite and I choose only one of them. the keyword from "The code" part will tell you the theme of my favorite.

From the hints, we know the number of letters in each keyword:

the sentence (4): ????
the code (5): space the latex (4): book
the book (7): journal
the number (4): date

Oleg has suggested a very good answer. I think it's:

The Martian. It's set in space, it's written in the format of a journal, and a major plot point revolves around his having to grow food to survive. A later plot point involves his having to communicate with earth using a code based on number sequences. If this isn't the answer, then it should be!

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ +1 you find one hint: "the code is written in Latex" that the correct part, but it isn't mean about bookmaker book/movie $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 4 '18 at 22:47
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ May the word about the code be "block"? It is divided in blocks after all. My thought about the three sequences of pages is that it's a hint to three sections of the book/movie: an introduction, a journal and the rest of the story. $\endgroup$ – LinuxBlanket May 26 '18 at 7:40
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @jsm I just realized you said "restart", that's a correct part! those numbers are restarted not three different sequences (hint 6) I hope you know what you should do to find the key number :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 26 '18 at 15:53
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @LinuxBlanket maybe the keyword for the code part is 'space' (there are issues with spaces there) and then we are looking for a book/movie about space? Interstellar or gravity or Martian something like this. $\endgroup$ – Oleg May 26 '18 at 16:38
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Lbhe thrff bs 'Gur Znegvna' vf rkpryyrag. Vg svgf gur pyhrf ernyyl jryy. Vg'f frg va fcnpr, vg'f jevggra va gur sbezng bs n wbheany, naq n znwbe cybg cbvag eribyirf nebhaq uvf univat gb tebj sbbq gb fheivir. N yngre cybg cbvag vaibyirf uvf univat gb pbzzhavpngr jvgu rnegu hfvat n pbqr onfrq ba ahzore frdhraprf. Vs guvf vfa'g gur nafjre, gura vg fubhyq or! $\endgroup$ – jsm May 27 '18 at 8:17
5
$\begingroup$

Is it

Reasons to Vote for Democrats: A Comprehensive Guide?

The Latex PDF is full of blank pages:

The book is (satirically) full of 256 blank pages.

"You will not find any secret ingredients here" message on first page of Latex book:

This message could refer to the fact that you won't find any reasons to vote Democrat in the book since it's all blank.

The page numbers:

The book has a 5 star rating on Amazon and was listed on April 11 (which is written as 11/4 outside of the US, hence the 114).

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  • $\begingroup$ I'm sorry, but still not the correct one :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 15 '18 at 19:53
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ This is the most entertaining answer this far :D $\endgroup$ – Bálint Budavölgyi May 16 '18 at 9:57
4
$\begingroup$

Not sure about the answer, but

is it the case that his favourite movie, book and song have the same name?

And about the numbers,

5 may refer to the book edition/volume
114 (minutes) is the running length of the movie
430 (4 minutes, 30 seconds) is the song length

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  • $\begingroup$ hmm. nice idea, but my friend only favorite one thing, movie, book, or song :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 8 '18 at 22:58
4
$\begingroup$

Worth a shot:

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets or the diary of Tom Riddle itself

Considering Hint 2 and 3:

I think the book you are talking is the Diary of Tom Riddle, which has all blank pages until you write in them. And in the scene where Harry is sucked into the diary, we see a date in the page on the top right corner. Now, I think there is a date in all pages, making it all pages numbered, as you said in Hint 3.

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Credit to @Bálint Budavölgy who suggested this in the comments $\endgroup$ – abagh0703 May 15 '18 at 18:54
  • $\begingroup$ @abagh0703 I actually didn't see his comment when I wrote this answer. But credits to him if this ends up being right :) $\endgroup$ – Gustavo Gabriel May 15 '18 at 18:56
  • $\begingroup$ not the correct answer, how about the sentence in the first page? but +1 you (almost) got correct for the numbers part :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 15 '18 at 19:57
  • $\begingroup$ @malioboro I have other idea but I don't know yet, is it related to rot13( pbpn pbyn be nal snzbhf oenaq obbx juvpu vf cbchyne sbe univat n frperg vaterqvrag?) $\endgroup$ – Gustavo Gabriel May 15 '18 at 20:17
  • $\begingroup$ @GustavoGabriel I'm afraid not $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 16 '18 at 0:08
4
$\begingroup$

Can your roommate favorite

movie

be

Breaking Bad?

Because we can interpret your Hint 4 in the following way:

the sentence - it talks about secret ingredients; this can be related to chemistry. the code - it is written in latex. Latex is used to produce many synthetic products. the book - it is a diary. In Chemical labs people put the results of their experiments in a kind of a diary. So all the clues tell us that the answer should be connected to chemistry, and the only movie I can think about is "Breaking bad".

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  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Puzzling.SE! This seems like a pretty good answer, though Breaking Bad is a TV show, not a movie (AFAIK). You may want to take the tour, it will give you a badge and some helpful information about the site. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 16 '18 at 14:16
  • $\begingroup$ that's true, breaking bad is a TV show not a movie nor book nor music like mentioned in the question :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 17 '18 at 3:59
4
$\begingroup$

Have this one stuck on my head for a while now:

Ratatouille is his favorite movie

the reasoning behind it is

The "Recipe" Book doesn't have any recipes because it is the mice that cooks. Therefore he won't find any secret there but will find in the \hatspace

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  • $\begingroup$ nice try! but not the answer, you should find the reason for the other clues :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 19 '18 at 6:39
4
$\begingroup$

Following @LinuxBlanket idea, I found some more supporting evidence, that your roommate favorite

book

is

1984

First, the keywords. Combining all the ideas above (mostly by @Just_a_Student) this is what I got:

the sentence (4): room; the code (5): cycle (since there are 3 cycles in the code); the latex (4): TikZ (ticks); the book (7): cooking; the number (4): date.

Now the connection of these keywords to your roommate favorite is as following

cooking - a very famous piece by George Orwell is called "In Defence of English Cooking"; date - 1984, this is clear; Tikz (ticks) - the novel begins with the sentence 'It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen'. Room - this may refer to Room 101; cycle - this may refer to a constant cycle of wars with Oceania and Eurasia.

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  • $\begingroup$ you got correct for the number eventough it is not an ordinary date, but how do you explain that the numbers are related to the date? $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 23 '18 at 14:55
  • $\begingroup$ @maliboro I am not sure about the connection between your numbers and 1984, but I think now that the code keyword is rot13(plpyr). Is it correct? $\endgroup$ – Oleg May 23 '18 at 15:00
  • $\begingroup$ sorry, but no, @Just a Student have a good approach for "the code" but ybbc/plpyr is not the correct one $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 23 '18 at 15:04
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @malioboro so maybe the code is oybpx? $\endgroup$ – LinuxBlanket May 23 '18 at 15:15
3
$\begingroup$

Your roommate's favorite thing is:

The $\LaTeX$ Cookbook

The code in the question is $\LaTeX$, and the book I mentioned, although it is called a "cookbook", doesn't contain any secret ingredients.

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  • $\begingroup$ sorry it is not the intended answer, I think my friend will not entertain his self by read a Latex cookbook :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 4 '18 at 18:08
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is it

John Cage 4'33" as in the number pieces? 4'33" is 3 movements of silence the footers 0121212 can be seen as 0.121212 which is the fraction 4/33

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  • $\begingroup$ nice try! but sorry, not the correct answer :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 15 '18 at 4:46
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I've been keeping up with this particular puzzle since it's driving me bonkers as I'm sure is the case for jsm, Gustavo, and the person who posted the bounty.

In the interest of trying to help others, it seems to me that the numbers of the pages do constitute a date that must be seen differently, as per OP comments. I thought of UNIX epoch but that is November 20, 2017 (depending on timezone) but I could not find anything released that day that could be interesting.

As far as the code hint, if it's not loop or cycle, perhaps circle or spiral can help

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    $\begingroup$ (... so how does this contribute toward a solution? As this stands, it's Not an Answer, not even a partial one. Having fragmentary thoughts on aspects of a puzzle might be comment-worthy, but you probably want at least a germ of an idea that seems to lead forward before you should post as even a partial answer.) $\endgroup$ – Rubio May 9 '18 at 0:26
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    $\begingroup$ regarding the date, according to the wiki, Peter Berling, a film producer / writer died that day, and the georgia dome in Atlanta was imploded... Maybe Berling produced this movie? $\endgroup$ – Sebastianb May 24 '18 at 16:18
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    $\begingroup$ From the hints that OP has acknowledged, we are definitely looking at something that involves a journal, dates, loops/cycles/jumps and cooking. I keep racking my brain for some time-traveling story that involves all of the above and the closest I can come up with is one of the volumes of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series "The Restaurant at the End of the Universe" but I highly doubt that is what was intended $\endgroup$ – m1gp0z May 25 '18 at 21:47
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    $\begingroup$ @m1gp0z - you are completely right. Honestly, the more clues I see, the more skeptical I am, that in the end everything will make sense. We know that this thing has 2 editions, which we have to distinguish between. But movies - they have only 1 edition, music - the same. So it's a popular book, related to journal+cooking+dates. I am afraid that such stuff might not exist. $\endgroup$ – Oleg May 25 '18 at 22:08
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    $\begingroup$ Maybe this is a puzzle to which there are no solutions, and the whole point is to see with what answers people will come? $\endgroup$ – Oleg May 25 '18 at 22:09
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I have 3 possible ideas :

that's quite a stretch but his favourite movie might be

Back to the future

because

if we consider that in the part of the code with the numbers, the improtant thing is that you "go back" to page 1 three times it could be seen as going back in time three times like in the 3 back to the future movies

Or, it might be

Rubber

because

LaTeX is spelled like latex which is natural rubber

Or simply

se7en

because

7 spaces have been replaced by /hspace(0.2)

11/05 EDIT

a random idea for the song

higher and higher from jackie wilson because 114 is higher than 5 and 430 is higher than 114

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  • $\begingroup$ Rubber was a weird movie. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 20:41
  • $\begingroup$ +1 for seeing those numbers from different point of view :) you need this to solve it $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 10 '18 at 1:47
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Very partial answer

Just to help anyone I think that a book is his favourite although I don't know which one.

Because:

hint 3 says 'blank pages with numbers does it remind you of a certain type of book' not a movie or music.

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    $\begingroup$ I think that could be related to a keyword also, not just the final answer $\endgroup$ – Bálint Budavölgyi May 23 '18 at 11:44
  • $\begingroup$ In the last hint he also mentions he chooses "one edition" out of two, so it does sound like it's a book. $\endgroup$ – Sebastianb May 23 '18 at 12:12
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    $\begingroup$ He might also mean something available as a movie and a book, and he prefers the book. $\endgroup$ – jsm May 23 '18 at 13:11
  • $\begingroup$ Hint 3 relates to "the book" keyword, but it doesn't mean his favorite is book $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 23 '18 at 15:11
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    $\begingroup$ @jsm True! m1gp0z mentioned something about the numbers, giving him the date 11/20/2017, which in turn is the day a film producer died. One popular film produced by this person is based on a book (Gur Anzr bs gur Ebfr) but that's as far as I got. $\endgroup$ – Sebastianb May 24 '18 at 16:42
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The Latex part will tell you there are two editions of my favorite and I choose only one of them.

We also know that the code won't execute without some extra bits added to it. So, from that hint, I think:

there is a longer edition of this work, that has something added to the beginning and the end, but your roommate prefers the shorter version.

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  • $\begingroup$ I'm affraid you are not on the right track :( $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 24 '18 at 1:24
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I think that his favourite is a

Movie

Because:

In the comments of @MackybenJonah answer OP says that in hint 3 he says book but he doesn't necessarily mean book. I think that it could be some sort of chemistry table with the numbers corresponding to the elements in the periodic table and the film could be a scifi movie.

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Your roommate's favorite movie (series) is:

Blank pages, due to the 450 blank pages generated by the LaTeX code you have given.

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  • $\begingroup$ wow I just know that movie, but sorry not the answer, my roomate's favorite is a popular one $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 8 '18 at 9:17
  • $\begingroup$ So is it a zbivr are we looking for? $\endgroup$ – Bálint Budavölgyi May 8 '18 at 9:29
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    $\begingroup$ I didn't say that :) $\endgroup$ – malioboro May 8 '18 at 10:09

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