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Star Trek ARG Report 7: Live Drop Location + New Site Identified [UPDATE: UK Romulan photos]

The community building up around the alternative reality game for the new Star Trek movie has has identified likely locations for a "live drop" this weekend, and "Fe’s" Twitter points to our first new in-game site. See below for all the latest on this viral Star Trek fun.

 

 

APRIL 24th STAR TREK ARG REPORT 7

NOTE: if you are new to the Star Trek ARG see ‘Quick review’ at the bottom of this article

 

April 24 Analysis 1: Spain drop location identified

Many TM community members noticed
the oblique reference to real world place from the April 23rd chat:

PHPChatUser5: "… Fe, yours will likely be near the museum right by you with the rusty towers. …"

Since "Fe" is almost certainly in Spain, the community immediately started focused there for candidate locations. Although several were proffered, "Raphael" was the first to identify one that passed muster: the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid. Raphael found a picture that clearly shows two rusted towers in front of the museum.


Reina Sofia

April 24 Analysis 2: Board with Romulan markings from "Greatbatch" photo points to real world locations
Observant community members noticed an unusual board in yesterday’s photo from "Geoff Greatbatch." "abramsfollower," “Merzmensch aka kosmopol,” and "Matt," — who started friendly email banter with Greatbatch — were able to obtain a higher resolution image of the site from a different angle:


Higher res Romulans in UK image (click to enlarge)


Check out these signs

Recognizing the markings as Romulan digits, community members were able to decipher the following sequences:

48856723510
3568951396917
340522-1189104*
525231134114

*later corrected by "Daoud" to 340522-1182404

In turn, the numeric sequences were interpreted as coordinates. Entering them into Google Maps yielded the following locations (thanks to "Mel" for the summary):

48.8567 2.3510
This coordinate is in Paris near the Place de l’Hôtel-de-Ville.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Place_de_l%27H%C3%B4tel-de-Ville

35.6895 139.6917
This coordinate point to the Tokyo City Hall in Tokyo.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tokyo_City_Hall

34.0522 -118.9104
This coodinate is near Los Angeles in a forest.

52.5231 13.4114
This coordinate is near the Alexanderplatz in Berlin.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexanderplatz

Clearly, the third location doesn’t fit in with the rest. "PV," "Daoud," and "Mel" reworked the numbers, looked at the location of Los Angeles’ City Hall, and noted that it was, indeed, the third location.

So, we have something happening this weekend, according to the chat transcript, and five possible drop locations corresponding to each of the five members of the Team of Romulan Time Travelers (I am taking suggestions for a better name for the characters :) ).

Alice Forrest 700 compels WarpTube to boldly go … to Curbridge
The debate over whether Twitterer @aliceforrest700 was a player or "in-game" was decisively answered when she posted the following:

@Merzmensch I used to use Facebook but I kept being sargastic adn I am dyslexic, which si a problem especially for my Japanese friends,

(bold print added for emphasis)

This was posted shortly before "LtPiper"discovered the Facebook page for PHPChatUser1, one "Sargash Si."

While the community mulled over the hard-to-read enhancement of the board at the crash site, Alice offered another hint:

I would never use photoshop when it’s not needed would you?

Coupled with gentle promptings from "Geoff Greatbatch" to visit the actual crash site, community member "WarpTube" has volunteered to drive out to Curbridge to see if anything can be found. If you would like to help defray the cost of petrol for the trip, hop over to the chatroom and ask for his PayPal information. Godspeed, WarpTube!

NEW CLUE: "Fe" points to new in-game site

At 7:00PM GMT, PHPChatUser4 tweeted:

@PHPChatUser5 .eu

He also updated his profile picture:


New Avatar

"Sheryl" identified the picture as John Flamsteed, but also noted it’s the first portrait that comes up when one does a Google Image Search for our friend Johann Bayer. This reporter ("aliotsy") put the pieces together and identified the first new in-game site since April 17th: johannbayer.eu!

The site initially displayed a sequence of grey boxes, followed by a white box. The grey boxes allowed text input, and when the white box was clicked on, a grid over an odd background appeared:


Background

The background has since disappeared, and the site now only displays a grid over a plain white background.

 

UPDATE: Chink2love makes it to the crash site, takes photos!
Why use Photoshop when it’s not needed, indeed! "Chink2love" managed to make it out to the crash site and take pictures. We have a Romulan invasion in the Oxfordshire countryside!

Click images to see at Chink2love’s site

 

 

 

 

 

 

A note from Aliotsy regarding credit for clues and breakthroughs
This ARG has been an incredible community effort, and it’s been fun to watch. Often, disparate strands of thought offered by individuals have come together to weave new insights. That said, I really do want to ensure that individuals who first found and shared solutions with the community are credited. To that end, I’m keeping a close eye on the ARG chatroom (which is moving fastest), the comments here on TrekMovie, and on the thread at Unfiction. I’m not perfect, though, so I can occasionally miss out, especially in the chat (I’m now using the Java client, which keeps a longer record than the Mibbit client). Please bear with me, and let me know in the comments if I need to make any corrections.

Star Trek ARG – A quick review
The Star Trek Alternative Reality Game began a couple of weeks ago after some fans spotted URLs on the walls of ‘Star Trek Dance Party’ photos up at thecobrasnake.com, these clues led to more sites, which in turn led to more clues. Here are the previous TrekMovie articles on the Star Trek ARG:

Also, all TrekMovie articles regarding this are now in a single Star Trek ARG Category.

What do you think? — and A NOTE before you comment
Before you post clues or speculation in the comments below, check the previous TrekMovie articles (including comments) to be sure they haven’t already been covered.

Star Trek ARG Forum
TM community member "Tom" hosts the very active ARG chat where much of the problem-solving is taking place. He has set up a forum for posting clues and speculation. It also includes links to the chat.

Other resources

Any new clues or theories? Let us know!
but again, be sure to check previous posts to make sure they haven’t been covered. If you really think you are on to something, send in a clue to tips [at]
trekmovie
[dot]
com. However, please keep tips to new (at least semi) verified clues, and not just speculation, that is what the comments are for.

Sort by:   newest | oldest
matt
April 24, 2009 2:58 pm

I don’t get it. What’s the point of this game?

Enterprise
April 24, 2009 3:00 pm

Wow. That’s more numbers than Lost

April 24, 2009 3:02 pm

Want to throw in an addendum: there are some reasonable doubts about johannbayer.eu being an “in-game” site. Tread carefully.

The Governator
April 24, 2009 3:06 pm

Wow. This is really complex and confusing, but cool.

April 24, 2009 3:07 pm

I first got into this and now its completely different from the start. Far to complicated for me. Although it is cool. It’s also awesome that WarpTube is going out there to see the site. Such creative people hahaha. I’m very excited to see the end result. I wonder if it plays with a plot line in the movie or countdown.

April 24, 2009 3:18 pm

Chink2love actually made it out to the crash site:

Crash Markings 1

.html

U.F.P.
April 24, 2009 3:30 pm

This is all over my head. I hope you folks figure it out. I think there are probably a lot of fans like me that are following your progress here without participating. Good Luck, were counting on you !

Mel
April 24, 2009 3:32 pm

The correct coordinates:

48.8567,2.3510
35.6895,139.6917
34.0522,-118.2434
52.5234,13.4114

April 24, 2009 3:32 pm

Crash Markings 1

.html

April 24, 2009 3:33 pm

Main Crash Markings…

.html

April 24, 2009 3:34 pm

THE SIGN…

.html

April 24, 2009 3:35 pm

Big writing Pt1

.html

April 24, 2009 3:41 pm

Big Writing Part 2

.html

Mel
April 24, 2009 3:42 pm

The slightly improve coordinates don’t change anything about the places google earth find with them.

It is still the same places as the article above mentions.

April 24, 2009 3:45 pm

Big Writng Part 3

.html

Mel
April 24, 2009 3:49 pm

I have made with the coordinates a QR code.

But it is a little too big for the http://johannbayer.eu/ site.

Can someone decode it to look if it nevertheless says something useful?

April 24, 2009 3:49 pm

Big Writing Part 4

.html

James T
April 24, 2009 3:55 pm

Has anyone noticed there are 6 photos of numeric sequences on Sargash Si’s facebook page? The Japanese writing at the bottom of each picture translates to.

“Being able to point to these properly, although it relieves your world and the galaxy, please lend the hand!!!”

April 24, 2009 3:55 pm

And Lastly a nice cheeky one of my with my SLUSHO! Hoodie on for any photoshop doubters out there!

.html

April 24, 2009 4:03 pm

@19 James T. – Yes. If you assume a tic-tac-toe grid, with 1, 7, and 9 used as positioning blocks, the sequences translate to another QR code.

Check out this picture:

from this update:

http://trekmovie.com/2009/04/23/star-trek-arg-update-6-more-chatter-romulans-in-uk/

April 24, 2009 4:04 pm

Oops, that was supposed to be 1,3, and 7.

Jenni Generation
April 24, 2009 4:24 pm

Woo! I was starting to think it was too low budget or something to bleed into the real world. I love when ARGs go all weird and real world.

God, you guys are all so dedicated. And awesome. ♥

Casaubon
April 24, 2009 4:32 pm

Not sure if this has been noticed yet. But in the picture of John Flamsteed on PHPChatUser4’s Twitter profile http://twitter.com/account/profile_image/PHPChatUser4, it looks like Flamsteed’s hand was Photoshopped out. Here’s the original http://www.nndb.com/people/727/000096439/

Any ideas on the significance of this, if any?

Matt
April 24, 2009 4:46 pm

Good eye, Casaubon. Some other people noticed that his hand was normally in the shot, too. Unfortunately, these are two different portraits, though very very similar.

April 24, 2009 4:46 pm

Right all pics have now been uploaded to :-
http://www.c2l.eu/Gallery/v/Chink2love/stARG/

C2L

Casaubon
April 24, 2009 4:59 pm

@25 Thanks Matt, good point. Has anyone found the real original portrait?

@26 C2L – Amazing work! Great job.

SHCone
April 24, 2009 5:00 pm

To the people who think the game is a waste of time or whatever:

Why do you feel the need to continue commenting? If you don’t care, then STOP CARING. Some of the people playing are clearly enjoying themselves- the game is for them.

Mel
April 24, 2009 5:20 pm

I just found something out.

http://qrcode.kaywa.com/

You can’t create a 39×39 QR code with this site. It makes a 37×37 code and the next biggest is a 41×41 code. I don’t know if the fault lies with the generator or if 39×39 QR codes don’t exist.

jonboc
April 24, 2009 5:31 pm

..fascinating watching this unfold.

Daoud
April 24, 2009 5:38 pm

Thought about 232 over dinner and wondered from a comment Tom made on the BBS about MD5 codes.

232 in MD5 is be83ab3ecd0db773eb2dc1b0a17836a1
If you google that, you get strangely a concrete block company, but then a lone image at a Uruguayan website. I have no idea where that is. Anyone recognize it?

BTW, what an amazing job Chink2Love!! Any chance was there a QR code on the back of the piece of plywood, or any small objects lying around?

charliebob
April 24, 2009 5:48 pm

can you download the source for the thing on the bayer website?
The link is http://www.johannbayer.eu/390e9ad1a5af0a2f8e370020fb3a833c.swf
Gonna see if anything comes up from the src code

Matt
April 24, 2009 5:50 pm

Daoud, that is an excellent question. Wish we had thought of that earlier!

Matt
April 24, 2009 5:50 pm

32 – Are you downloading it?

sDadd
April 24, 2009 5:59 pm

So everybody has their heads cracking up over that flashpuzzle on the johannbayer.eu site. It has a 39×39 size, i assumed that it had something to do with that QR code. But it doesn’t, according to this schedule: http://nfggames.com/games/jphonegames/qrcapacity.shtm
the 39×39 size doesn’t exist! I posted this info just in case you people are still trying to find out what the image was in order to crack it!

April 24, 2009 6:14 pm

@35 – Well I guess that just leaves a nanogram then http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nonogram

Daoud
April 24, 2009 6:15 pm

–If you keep the whole outside rows and columns white, then you’d have a 37×37 size.

–Not sure what the puppetmasters are up to… but we’ve got what I call “fakirs” I guess:
http://twitter.com/PHPChatUser going as another php epsilon
http://twitter.com/PHPChatUser6 going as php omega
http://twitter.com/PHPChatUser7 going as php cinco

Funny pranksters, no doubt. Although #6 has an excellent link to Two Steps From Hell by Freedom Fighters (background music in the original Trailers before they had Giacchino’s scoring to work with)… If something not scored for Trek ends up associated with Trek, let it be that instead of “Faith of the Heart”.

Raveoned
April 24, 2009 6:20 pm

The crash site photos are amazing! Wow!

One question, which I didn’t see on the prior posts: Flamsteed and Bayer – is there any connection with them (they did have some connection with the Solar System discoveries, for one)? Or, are their portraits just being used to cover the QR codes?

Dave
April 24, 2009 6:23 pm

Chink2Love-

Do you happen to check out the surrounding area to see if there was anything else? Or the building foundation, or what ever it is that the Romulan number sign was next to?

Ediec
April 24, 2009 6:27 pm

@29 & 35

might it be a 37×37 with the border pixels simply being blank?

Daoud
April 24, 2009 6:31 pm

#38 Good question. Only astronomy buffs know this offhand, but of course Wikipedia is our friend :) Bayer’s Uranometria (“measure of the heavens”) in 1603 defined most of the constellations we still use today in the modern locations and names. He also indexed stars mostly by brightness with Greek letters, usually in order of brightness (alpha Centauri, beta Centauri, etc.) sometimes by position. John Flamsteed was the first British Astronomer Royal. He indexed all bright starsconstellations visible from the UK in order of right ascension. Things like 61 Cygni, 128 Trianguli, and 40 Eridani. We still use both of their designation types.

cagmar
April 24, 2009 6:35 pm

oooh fun, fun. I just hope ALLL of this is hidden on the DVD. Cloverfield DVD was severely lacking in ARG content, though it did have some :) I want all the key points on the DVD.

I’m not really getting this stuff fast enough to have any impact, but I love watching it unfold… Keep up the great work people!

Thorn
April 24, 2009 7:15 pm

what if the grid at
http://www.johannbayer.eu/
is supposed to be filled in like Bayer’s star atlas?
What were those constellations that were found earlier in the ARG

Admiral_BlackCat
April 24, 2009 7:28 pm

a 37X37 grid with a one “pixel” border would indeed be 39X39.

Paul Fitz
April 24, 2009 7:30 pm

This is just too hard for me to do, but it is seriously cool to watch, i’m so excited to be following this, Thanks to all you guys and gals who are solving this and keeping the rest of us entertained, intrigued and hanging on the edge in anticipation of the next cryptic revelation.

Its like reading a good book. Best of luck to you all.

April 24, 2009 7:47 pm

@37 Daoud, @40 Ediec, @44 Admiral_Blackcat — noticed that it could be 37×37, too. Hope that works out — I personally think johanbayer.eu is legitimate, but there’s good reason to think it isn’t.

@38 Raveoned and @41 Daoud — Daoud’s answer was an initial. Something else to note (courtesy of “Sheryl”): if you do a search on images.google.com for Johann Bayer (no quotes), that portrait of Flamsteed is the first portrait you see. It’s possible that the Gamemasters mistakenly posted an incorrect portrait (as they did for PHPChatUser5). Whether they did so intentionally or not is another question entirely. :)

Mario
April 24, 2009 8:15 pm
Daoud
April 24, 2009 8:16 pm

Of course, the Flamsteed designations I chose there are Tellar, Romulus and Vulcan. ;) So there’s a connection, but not to the ARG, argh! :)

Is there any idea still on the
INDUS:13-06
CHAMAELEON:13-23
x
x
APUS:01-05?
I was thinking it might be the start of a nonogram, but we’d need oodles more lines. Another thought was the number of letters in each constellation name could yield: which if letters are:
05:13-06 E:M-F
10:13-23 J:M-W
x
x
04:01-05 D:A-E

Mario
April 24, 2009 8:16 pm

coordinates, times, let”s try them on google maps.

Daoud
April 24, 2009 8:20 pm

#47 Game’s a foot… so now we have first, a Madrid coordinate:
40.408865 -3.693845
which is the location we already had… and

wpDiscuz