Episode #125 of the Stack Overflow podcast is here. We talk Tilde Club and mechanical keyboards. Listen now

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17

The dots in between the squares... These can be interpreted There are also some other ways to extract similar arrangements of letters: The data collected: The next step needed heavy hinting for me to find it: Unused information [hinted to be a clue to the step I did first]:


10

The six hint are highlighted in this image: First hint: Second hint: Third hint: Fourth hint - solved by @Jens Fifth hint: - solved by @Jens Sixth hint: The final solution and the logic grid is the following:


8

So, the first cipher is a and the ciphertext decodes to The second cipher is and the ciphertext decodes to The last cipher is a which yields Oh, and thanks for


7

Partial currently:


6

I've solved the fifth hint, but it's a bit long for a comment: One viable solution to the logic grid occurs if we guess that EDIT The last comment above is wrong. There is only one solution. I leave it to you, @Annosz. :)


5

I believe this cipher is


5

This is not a complete solution. I am going to drop some of my scratch here in case it inspires someone else. On the subject of the cipher: I have noticed that Applying the decryption: So, the answer to the question "Where is Lester?" is ... Because As a bonus,


4

The symbols look like but decoded it spells TIS A RED HERRING but it's a clue to the steganography: It says which translates to


3

Partial Answer, more like initial analysis really... Hint #2 says to focus on where the capital letters are. In the first two stanzas there is unusual capitalization. I believe it is a pattern of zeroes and ones meant to be binary. The fourth stanza says "As the first is one". Starting with 1 and continuing word to word, ignoring new lines I got: ...


3

First we which gives: So I think the answer is Line-by-line explanation:


2

As Neo1009 already found out, The hints in the second stanza were So the encoding is What we had to do according to stanza 3 is to find out Lets do that The decoded message:


2

The answer is which you find by or


1

The message is The cipher is


1

Okay I'm shooting my shot. I'm not good with ciphers or what not, and I could be on the totally wrong trail but... Here me out here: OP went clearly out of their way to introduce magic into this question, but after the first paragraph, magic is barely referenced. They are meeting at a university laboratory which is pretty ordinary, even the clue that was "...


1

Based on the comments from Skynet_0 and Bananenkopp, we see that The passcode may therefore be


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