Morton Fox (mortonfox) wrote,
Morton Fox

Programming Purgatory

Rainy, 60°F. For the longest time, I didn't even do puzzle caches unless the solutions were fairly obvious. I figured I didn't have time to work out ciphers and such. The real problem was I didn't take a close enough look at those puzzles. Recently, I started looking at puzzle caches in the area and found that a good number of those could be solved by logic, by computer algorithm, or by looking up keywords on the web to find decryption software. So in a matter of days, I got solutions to over 70 puzzle caches!

Today, I headed out to Hatfield, Souderton, Sellersville, Perkasie, and Lansdale to do a bunch of puzzle caches for which I had solutions. Of course, I also did any traditional caches I came across along the way just because. In the end, I got 28 caches in that area, 7 of which were puzzles. The group I targeted was the "Programming Purgatory" series. Each PP puzzle is a piece of obfuscated code in an undisclosed programming language and the output is the final cache coordinates. Of course, if you know what language it is, then you can simply get the compiler or interpreter and run it. I was familiar with all those languages, actually. Well, not PP 0011, which was in COBOL, but fortunately OpenCOBOL could handle it! The puzzle that gave me the most trouble was PP 0001. It is VBScript but I assumed it was VB.NET at first and wondered why it failed.

It was slightly rainy the whole day. In the evening, the rain picked up so I decided to leave the area and go to dinner, which was salad and shrimp fondue at Ruby Tuesday in Concord Mall, back in Delaware. As I was leaving the mall, I got a notification that a cache was published just two miles down the road. I wondered if I would be able to do that at night as it's in the woods, although not far from the sidewalk. It turned out to be not too difficult and I got an FTF at 11pm on "Katona's Cache".

Tiny Often Empty Park: Hatfield, Pa (Pennsylvania)
Scooby: The Spirits of '76 #21 (resurrected) (Pennsylvania)
I Love This Game (Pennsylvania)
Programming Purgatory 0011 (Pennsylvania)
Programming Purgatory 0001 (Pennsylvania)
G.I. Ant - Souderton (Pennsylvania)
Programming Purgatory 0000 (Pennsylvania)
Programming Purgatory 0010 (Pennsylvania)
What's At Stake? #23 - United Stakes Of America (Pennsylvania)
Scooby: The Spirits of '76 #19 (revisited) (Pennsylvania)
Bike or Hike Perkasie #3 (Memorial Cache) (Pennsylvania)
Bike or Hike Perkasie # 9 (Pennsylvania)
Bike or Hike Perkasie #6 "Hot Stuff" (Pennsylvania)
6.5 ft Above (Pennsylvania)
It's so ... US! #4 (Pennsylvania)
12FT Above (Pennsylvania)
HIGH VOLTAGE (Pennsylvania)
C&D My Way (Pennsylvania)
Let's Get Take Out (Pennsylvania)
ISAAC'S ARMY (Pennsylvania)
Hilltown Hospitality (Pennsylvania)
Consolation Cache (Pennsylvania)
11 ft Above Yet Under 2 ft (Pennsylvania)
Because What Is That Thing: Souderton (Pennsylvania)
Break out a pencil... (#1) (Pennsylvania)
Urban Hunter #2 - 3 is a Magic Number (Pennsylvania)
What's At Stake? #01 - This Is A Stake Up (Pennsylvania)
Suspicious Activity 6 (Pennsylvania)
Katona's Cache (Delaware)

Tags: bucks county, geocaching, montgomery county, puzzle cache, ruby tuesday

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