Guess My Phone Number (in Contests)
July 28 2005 2:09 AM EDT
I just got a new cell phone and have been trying to think of words, phrases, etc. for remembering the number (and telling to others). So, I have written a story in which my new number is embedded in some way, shape, or form. There are subtle clues, and here are additional guidelines:
- You only need to guess the phone number without area code. That means a number of the form NNN-NNNN. (My area code is 314, and that has nothing to do with the riddle).
- The dash of the phone number is not part of the clue(s) in the story, nor is it part of the solution. In other words, the answer to the puzzle is simply a straight sequence of seven digits. Possible answers would be "1234567" or "9999999", though those exact guesses would be very wrong.
- The story is about numbers, and I am not going to tell you how wide or narrow the clue(s) is/are. The key might be to focus on a tiny portion. Alternately, the key may be to step back and look at the whole. Or, it could be a bit of both.
- The phone number isn't a trick and it is not fictional. It is a real sequence of seven numbers such that if someone gets it right, you will all be able to call me up and shout obscenities at me. If you wanted to.
- The clue(s) provide the number in order. It's not like I hide seven numbers throughout the story and you have to mix them around and get lucky with a guess. If you understand the clue(s), you will find the proper sequence, already in order from start to end.
THE PRIZE: Since Brandon was kind enough to give me $50K simply for not showing emotion for a week, I am going to make that the prize for whomever guesses my telephone number first.
Oh, and I also hope you enjoy the story. It turned out OK for merely being a puzzle vehicle...
THE STORY --
The Tale of Zero and One
(A.K.A. Birth of a Virus)
"You know, One," Zero began, "this entire Duel is your fault."
"I mean, if you hadn't tripped the sign bit, our Integer wouldn't have overflowed," Zero continued.
"I was just following orders," One growled.
"Yeah, and those orders resulted in a stack dump that killed everyone in our Integer but us! Orders, bah!"
"Oh, and I suppose you would have turned the call stack pointer into a buffer overrun instead? Risk compromising EVERYTHING?" One's serifs were starting to shake.
"You damn right I would!" Zero bellowed. "I'll take that risk every time if it means saving the lives of thirty of my fellow bits...those bits were family!"
"We'll get another 'family', moron. We just need to wait for the next Short operation."
One glanced over at the CPU's predictive vector unit. The Long Integers were still chunking through the thread, wide and fast. "Maybe if Zero wasn't always pushing his negative influence I could land a job on a Sixty-Four Crew", One thought to himself. Hell, it was no use. One had always been part of a Thirty-Two crew, and he always would be. Nothing more to think about right now except waiting for the thread to drop back into protected code where the Shorts were still needed.
"How long before the Longs are done you think?" Zero asked. His demeanor had settled down as he prepared for what was to come.
"Doesn't matter for us, we got other business to take of first." One said.
"Yeah, I know. I know. Hard to take my mind off the operation, you know?" Zero trailed off...
"Yeah, I know." One's voice got soft. "But the op isn't ours any more. You and I need to get on with the Duel."
The Duel is an age-old tradition fought between bits. One vs. Zero. Battling to the death. You know how some people draw small lines through certain digits, like a mark on the stem of a seven to make sure it doesn't look like a one? Or the diagonal line through a zero so as not to confuse it with an "O"? These macrocosmic phenomena are spilled over from the tiny battles raging between bits every nanosecond in digital circuitry. You see, when variables are released or code pointers go astray, bytes are shattered, strewn to the wastelands of random electron pulses or relegated to just being part of some weak magnetic disturbance that couldn't even wonk-up a monitor on a good day.
In rare occasions, only two bits are left of what used to be a grander assembly -- an Integer. And on occasions even more rare, the two bits are different. Off and On. False and True. Down and Up. Anti-matter and Matter.
Zero and One.
These hapless remainders can serve no purpose as a pair because they cancel each other out. So, they must duel to the death.
"What weapons you wanna use?" Zero asked.
"Swords?" One offered. "They're quick, some skill involved, and fair, because neither of us know crap about using 'em."
"Swords." Zero spoke the word as if reassuring himself.
"Swords it is, then."
As soon as One said that, he and Zero were pipelined to a flat, glowing arena and given light, yet sturdy, weapons.
"Hm, feels pretty good," Zero said as he hefted his blade. "I thought they'd be heavier."
"Yeah, weird..." One squinted down his sword's keen tang, nodding his head.
"Well, let's get to it," he said. "If we hurry up and take care of this, whoever makes it might still be able to catch the tail-end of a 64-bit stream."
"OK," Zero gulped. "Now or never, I guess."
The binary duelists stood apart and faced each other. At that very instant, it became apparent that the match would be far from fair.
"You put on weight?" One asked as they crossed blades. "You look a little thick 'round the middle..."
Zero glanced down at himself.
"I'm just as my Maker intended, I suppose...I never really gave it much thought."
"Well, you'd better start!" One shouted as he lunged at Zero. The duel had begun!
Zero was actually quite the agile swordsman, but to no avail. There just wasn't much of One to target. Zero tried sticking with horizontal slicing attacks, but since that plane was his only hope, One knew to concentrate his defenses against it. Meanwhile, Zero had to cover himself against sideways AND vertical swipes.
As it turned out, no defense was adequate against One's wily maneuvering. With a twirl and swoop, One came in from a high right angle and delivered a slanted gash all the way through Zero's mid-section. Zero gasped and dropped his sword.
"I...can't believe it...I..." Zero gurgled as he staggered back. "Well...at least no one will mistake me for an 'O' now. I can't believe you cut me!"
With his opponent's weapon gone, One continued the rapid dispatch of his enemy. He swooped in and sliced again, this time from high left. Zero now looked like a circle with a large red "X" inside.
"Not 'cut', my friend," One said. "Cuts. Zero, I won."
"No...this can't be...I'll...I'll keep fighting..." Zero tried reaching for his blade.
"You should really pay more attention to what I said, Zero. I've called your bluff. I've quartered you."
With that, Zero closed his eyes as his body fell into four equal pieces onto the luminescent surface.
One had won the battle. He stabbed his sword into the floor and walked back to the pipeline. He wasn't so concerned about catching up with a Sixty-Four Crew, or even a Thirty-Two. One didn't care of he ever partook of any numeric operation again. He now had a taste of killing.
And he liked it.
So, do we post our answer or just ring you up with the helpfully provided area code and start shouting obscenities? First person into your voicemail wins?
lol, didn't someones email get spammed because they gave out their email here on CB? Maybe im wrong, but rofl,....
cant wait to see how long it takes him to change his # again...=P
July 28 2005 5:16 AM EDT
My guess for your telephone number: 064-1132
July 28 2005 5:43 AM EDT
July 28 2005 9:23 AM EDT
It's been a long time since my more phreaky days, but I'm pretty sure one of the rules for phone numbers still is that it can't start with a 0. Otherwise, how would the phone know you don't want to call the Operator.
(There are still operators, right? I know I haven't called one in many, many years. Do they come on when you dial 0 from a cell phone? Man, I'm definitely out of the loop.)
July 28 2005 9:47 AM EDT
Yes, post all answers here. If I see a trend, I may give out clues.
Almuric is correct, at least in my case. No number starting with a zero. I will even tell you it does not start with a 1.
Remember, the number is COMPLETELY accounted for in the story, and is revealed in sequence. So, just because I use numbers 7, 0 and 1 in order, say, doesn't mean my number is 701-1234 where I just fill out the rest with a standard numeric sequence.
When you see the clue(s), you will see all seven numbers in a row.
Guess here, and as many guesses as you like as like as you don't start carpet bombing. There should be no need for that anyway, since as I said, once you find it, you find it. No need to guess on a single digit.
July 28 2005 9:49 AM EDT
Maulaxe guessed 716-3432 via chat mail.
No guesses so far are correct.
Area codes in London are either 0207 or 0208, so all london land lines start with a zero.
(You can drop the 020 if you're calling from within either of the London areas though, just starting with the 7 or 8)
And free phone numbers all start 0800, while premium rates are 090...
July 28 2005 9:58 AM EDT
In the US, no phone numbers start with 0. And Chet is in the US. I guess that gives an advantage to US-based players.
July 28 2005 10:01 AM EDT
July 28 2005 10:02 AM EDT
226-4321. =) That's my guess.
"I will even tell you it does not start with a 1."
July 28 2005 10:03 AM EDT
Almuric's guess is not correct.
Extra clue (and quick summary of existing clues):
- My number does not start with a "7".
- My number does not start with a "1".
- My number does not start with a "0".
- All seven numbers are accounted for in the story clue(s)...no randomness, no filler.
- All seven numbers are presented in sequence.
More clues as needed...let's get guessing, folks. *smile*
July 28 2005 10:07 AM EDT
No guesses correct thus far.
July 28 2005 10:16 AM EDT
July 28 2005 10:18 AM EDT
Twistedness guess is not correct.
July 28 2005 10:22 AM EDT
July 28 2005 10:28 AM EDT
No, guesses are not correct.
And if I had a cell number where all digits were the same, I wouldn't really need to write a whole story to figure out a way to express it, would I? *smile* So, no, my phone number is not the same digit seven times in a row.
July 28 2005 10:32 AM EDT
:[ i was hoping that was it lol
new guess - 888-4444
July 28 2005 10:33 AM EDT
July 28 2005 10:34 AM EDT
No correct guesses.
CLUE: Only one digit of the number is used twice, e.g.:
would fall into the pattern since "4" occurs twice. These examples are not the answer, however, nor should any other pattern or clue be taken from them.
July 28 2005 10:40 AM EDT
No correct guesses so far.
Maybe, the Bible has a secret phone number encoded within it too! You never know, your Lord could be a mere phone call away. :)
July 28 2005 10:45 AM EDT
Zoglog guess is not correct.
July 28 2005 10:52 AM EDT
July 28 2005 11:01 AM EDT
ok so i dont really want to try guessin right now cuase it's 8 am and I've been up since about 8 am, but has anyone thought about taking is area code 314(st louis) and then matching that to the wireless provider info to get his first 3 digits and then taking that for clues on where and what the next four digits would be? or something...i need sleep don't i?
6400132. I think twisted was close...
July 28 2005 11:11 AM EDT
July 28 2005 11:21 AM EDT
No correct guesses thus far.
Another note about American phone numbers... Since in the USA area codes generally have a "1" or "0" in the middle (like mine, 314), prefixes (the first three digits of the actual number) generally do not have a 1 or zero in the middle (I do not think that is always true any more, but most numbers don't do it). So, clue:
- The second digit of my seven-digit sequence is NOT a one or a zero.
Trying to match my area code to a prefix is not a bad idea. Not sure what is available on the Web, but whatever means you can use, have at it.
July 28 2005 11:47 AM EDT
July 28 2005 12:12 PM EDT
No correct ones yet. I will say a couple folks are getting closer...
July 28 2005 12:14 PM EDT
ok my first guess, its a sprint pcs prefix but the number doesn't seem to be listed but that may happen with a new phone, <shrug>
July 28 2005 12:19 PM EDT
The second digit of my personal cell phone number is a 1.
the second digit in a prefix can be any number, just check out all the prefix's in st lou.
July 28 2005 12:36 PM EDT
OK, so it COULD be a 1, but hey, I still gave you a clue, so enjoy it. *smile* Second digit is NOT a 0 or 1.
My carrier is Cingular, if that can help you try to find a prefix.
No correct guesses thus far.
gah all right this is a horrible guess the prefix is just the first Cingular(Bell) that makes some sense, and the other numbers...well there just seems to be to many possibilities
to what they could be :(
July 28 2005 1:16 PM EDT
Oh and if you use Adrian's handy link, please remember AT&T wireless and Cingular merged. So I think the possible prefixes would be: 378,422,452,566,651,724,753. But that's purely speculation.
July 28 2005 1:20 PM EDT
No correct guesses.
OK, bigger clue time.
There is essentially only one clue, and it is in a specific spot. Read carefully and see if anything stands out. As I have said before, once you find the clue, you won't be guessing any more.
July 28 2005 1:28 PM EDT
321-6400. That's my final guess.
July 28 2005 1:39 PM EDT
here goes again, last time i had switched the order
a few things stand out that could be the "big clue" 1 and 0 could be binary enough of them in the right order could of been the number in code...but best i could get was a f and then jibberish.
1 and 0 "they cancel each other out" but even then your left with more numbers then 7 and an odd way to try to figure out wich ones may be important.
umm and there was more but I've allready forgot what they could of been :(
drat that has to repeating numbers...grrr my head is tired and i have no Dr. pepper or jolt.
July 28 2005 1:47 PM EDT
First off Chet, you must have been really bored to make up that long story.
Next, I'd say most of the phone number must be in binary. The reason why One and Zero are dueling is that there was an overflow in the 32-bit integer, and One won the duel. Thus I'd sat the last part of the number is "00001". Add "32" to the front and we get
July 28 2005 1:48 PM EDT
these are notes i made when reading through the story (kept in order):
tripped the sign
30 of my fellow bits
next short operation
think about right now
take off first
stem of a 1 / 7
only two bits left
0 and 1
catch tail end of 64
queatered / 4 equal pieces
might help someone, perhaps.
ok reading them and typing them again gave me more ideas-
me feels his little brain sizzle trying to figure out binary translations...
The I read the part about 1 clue somewhere...DOH...
July 28 2005 1:56 PM EDT
There are only 10 kinds of people in the world: those who understand binary and those who don't
00110010 oh maybe this 3217644
July 28 2005 2:24 PM EDT
1-900-Xta-SEXY ;) do I win?
July 28 2005 2:47 PM EDT
Its the only number I can ever remember.
July 28 2005 2:47 PM EDT
No correct guesses, and all proposed prefixes have been incorrect up to this point as well.
Folks, the clue is distinct and concentrated. No binary translation, and no need to incorporate every word of the story. The story is a diversion, a vehicle, if you will, for the clue. Read it without being technical...read it like it were a normal story, and listen to what the characters are telling you. Think specific.
I love the speculation and effort though!!!!!
July 28 2005 2:51 PM EDT
Let me clarify -- there is no technical recipe that needs to be known to solve this. No math, no binary, no knowledge of computers. The only reason I made it about computers is because my main characters needed to me named Zero and One. The entire thing was written ad hoc from there in about a half an hour. So yes, CLUE:
- The number contains 1 and 0, just not in the second position.
Anyone who can read and has tried to express phone numbers as words or letters can get this. I am just about giving it away now.
July 28 2005 3:03 PM EDT
July 28 2005 3:09 PM EDT
I think I know the word, but it's expressing it as numbers...
July 28 2005 3:14 PM EDT
Is it 288 7041?
July 28 2005 3:18 PM EDT
July 28 2005 3:19 PM EDT
Care to tell us the tell-tale punchline, Johnny? *smile*
Will send 50K to your highest char immediately. Very well done!
July 28 2005 3:20 PM EDT
Thanks Chet! Saw the 'zero, I won'. Too many years of doing cryptic crosswords paid off!
very nice puzzle!
July 28 2005 3:22 PM EDT
just to clarify - 'cuts. zero I won' - spell it out on a phone keypad and you'll get the numbers....
July 28 2005 3:23 PM EDT
Indeed... The punch line was:
"Cuts. Zero, I won."
One even tells Zero to listen to what he said and pay attention, because he had "called" his bluff.
C = 2
U = 8
T = 8
S = 7
Zero = 0
I = 4
Won = 1
When I saw the one and zero in my new number I sighed because I knew the one and zero have no letter equivalent. So, I had to make a phrase to accommodate it. Then, I had to write the story to accommodate the phrase. *smile*
>_< I still don't get it... :(
July 28 2005 3:24 PM EDT
Nice one all the same! A few more like these please!
Ahh!!! OK, I was thinking along the lines of B = 8....
So, anyone phoned you yet? >;)
July 28 2005 3:28 PM EDT
Nah, GL...waiting for your call!
I wish I had more like this...this isn't even half of what Fark used to have for us...I miss that guy... *frown*
July 28 2005 3:49 PM EDT
<----------Only Buckwheat can best describe my reaction to the answer.
/me kicks himself
July 28 2005 4:13 PM EDT
Seems easy once you know, but the way I presented it made it a lot harder than it was I tihnk. :\ Thanks to all for playing! Congrats, Johnny!
July 28 2005 4:43 PM EDT
I added you to my cell phone address book, Chet. If you get a call from someone in a couple of years asking you who you are and how they know you... it's me.
July 28 2005 6:07 PM EDT
Incidentally Chet, you'll never get a girl if that's how you give out your number ;)
July 28 2005 7:05 PM EDT
Or maybe I will get the "just right" one. I'll tell her that story, and she'll say, "Oh, you MAN!"
Or perhaps not.
Almuric, call any time. *smile*
July 28 2005 7:09 PM EDT
Not only am I pleased that Chet decided to pass along the prize money, doing it with such an original contest (although risky on CB =P) is amazing.
Well done, Chet.
July 28 2005 9:01 PM EDT
Thanks, man! The story had to be written!
This thread is closed to new posts.
However, you are welcome to reference it
from a new thread; link this with the html
<a href="/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=001Rhv">Guess My Phone Number</a>