Decrypt the hidden meaning in the picture below:

enter image description here

Hint 1:

Component not primary

Hint 2:

This is a humble yet terrific and radiant puzzle.

  • $\begingroup$ Asking for a bit of a hint: are we expected to anagram letters that have no specified order? $\endgroup$
    – xnor
    Jan 25 '15 at 6:50
  • $\begingroup$ Yes. (trying not to give too big of a hint but it won't be hard once you get the letters of the word, some will already be in the right order) $\endgroup$
    – Quark
    Jan 25 '15 at 7:10
  • $\begingroup$ I guess I have something wrong then, since I don't seem to getting a word, nor does adding a letter or changing one letter give a word. $\endgroup$
    – xnor
    Jan 25 '15 at 7:13
  • $\begingroup$ Hint 2 should help. I'll give more hints later if needed. $\endgroup$
    – Quark
    Jan 25 '15 at 7:15
  • $\begingroup$ I've played 'logo game' before and that 'n' seems awfully familiar! But I can't seem to remember the name! 'canon'? no. 'nikon'? nope..Think... Think... $\endgroup$
    – Spikatrix
    Jan 25 '15 at 7:53

I believe it must be

Wilbur, the pig from Charlotte's Web


This is a Baconion cipher. The first three letters are encoded in color channels. The red channel is present in letters B, C and O, which encodes to BABBA, or W. A similar process is done for the green and blue channels, which yield ABAAA (I) and ABABB (L). The next three letters are encoded in the font style. The B (AAAAB) comes from the n being italic. The U comes similarly from the capital letters (BABAA), and the final letter (R) is encoded in the pixelated font (ABBBA). The first hint shows you what the "default" lettering looks like, so you can spot anomalies. The second hint refer directly to the answer, but also hints on that this is in fact a Baconian cipher (pig reference).

I might expand on the explanation if it is confusing, but right now I don't have the time for it. Very nice puzzle.

  • $\begingroup$ Well, it would be W, but Bacon codes W as BABAA as J nd U are not coded. (or rather, they share codes with I and V). $\endgroup$
    – Jasen
    Jan 25 '15 at 11:54
  • $\begingroup$ clarification: bacon cypher is a type of binary code usually explained usig with A and B instead of 0 and 1, so red in places 1,3,4 means 10110 or BABBA $\endgroup$
    – Jasen
    Jan 25 '15 at 11:56
  • $\begingroup$ That is the original alphabet, but there are alternatives that encode all 26 characters differently. See rumkin.com/tools/cipher/baconian.php or mothereff.in/bacon $\endgroup$
    – waxwing
    Jan 25 '15 at 13:08
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Nice, and yeah I used the "updated" version of the bacon cipher. Also if you google my hint 2 you'll find plenty of references if you've never read Charlotte's Web. $\endgroup$
    – Quark
    Jan 25 '15 at 17:24
  • $\begingroup$ @Quark Ah, I was stuck because I was using the version of the cipher on Wikipedia. Didn't know there were others. $\endgroup$
    – xnor
    Jan 26 '15 at 9:46

Is it



1. It's a cryptogram solution of "bacon" if you allow that a letter can represent itself.
2. Relevance to Hint 1 is that a synonym for "default" is "basic", which is on a black background, which evokes the common phrase "basic black".
3. Relevance to Hint 2 is that the words "humble", "terrific", and "radiant" are three of the four words or phrases (the fourth being "some pig") woven into her web by Charlotte to describe Wilbur the pig in the book "Charlotte's Web" by E. B. White. White is the opposite of black, and it also has the cute added relevance of bacon coming from a pig.

I guess

"white" could be the answer, too, but it didn't seem to fit as well with Hint 1. So could "basic" but that doesn't fit at all with Hint 2. Any 5-letter word with no repeated letters is a cryptogram solution of "bacon" but those are the top three I could think of that were at all relevant to the hints.

  • $\begingroup$ Ah, I think the one above must be right regarding "bacon ciphers". I hadn't heard of those before but it fits better than my answer. $\endgroup$
    – Fonebone
    Jan 25 '15 at 12:22

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