May 18th, 2009

bald man thinking cap

on being remote support crew for the Great Urban Race

Saturday a couple friends of ours from college did the Great Urban Race in San Francisco. It's a mix of treasure/scavenger hunt and puzzle contest where the team gets clues referring to locations in the city. The team has to figure out the places referred to in the clues, then travel on public transportation to the places and take a picture. Ten clues total, whoever has best overall time is the winner.

Teams are allowed to have phone-based helpers so they asked if I would help out. Honored, I said yes!

C and I helped with three puzzles of the ten. On one, the clue was in code and we helped figure out the code and then the place in San Francisco referred to in the clue. On the other two, we figured out what place the clue was referring to.

- The puzzle clue, decoded, was something like: "Take a photo of all teammates at the statue symbolizing the great soul."

- Second clue was: "I was born in the 1870s. I've seen many people in my life and traveled all around. Some people still call me a dummy. In 1966, I moved to my present home in a museum. Take a photo of all teammates with me, and remember to be respectful when you approach me."

- Third clue was: "It's not the Statue of Liberty, but San Francisco has its own statue representing freedom. Find this status and take a picture of all teammates with it." Here's the picture:

Can you figure these out? Internet access is assumed and allowed. I'll put the answers in a follow-up post.

The Great Urban Race sounds like a blast. C and I are thinking we might try to enter next year, especially if the San Francisco one is the day before Bay to Breakers, as it was this year.
bald man thinking cap

the answers to the Great Urban Race SF clues

In the previous post, I gave three clues from Great Urban Race San Francisco that C and I helped figure out. Here's the answers!

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We don't know how our friends did yet, but they did get all ten clues and had a good time traveling around the city. Results up later this week.

Seems like a Great Urban Race would be a great way to spend a day with a friend traveling around a city. Lots of events listed at the website. Check it out!
bald man coffee mug on head

two random and fun links

- Best Visual Illusions of the Year (at Illusion Contest, snurched from jaylake). Excellent demonstrations of illusions such as the "break" of a curveball and how contrast shading can change visual sex determination in faces. Make sure to check out the TOP TEN.

- The Geography of Jobs (at tipstrategies). Job gains or losses in the US, over five years, visually presented as colored circles. It's like the Missle Command of job loss by the end.