More letters in the mail, ~1/15/02, this time sent to my work address.
Two white letters, three manilla envelopes, addressed to me, from me. Postmarks are Las Vegas, Nevada.
Letter #1 - hebrew math?
01.21.02 Dave: The Xerox from the first letter looks like a bad attempt to calculate the Eigenvalues of the matrix, by my own calculations (Took me forever since I haven't done these in 4 or 5 years!) the eigenvalues are 4, 3 and -1. If someone could translate the Hebrew it might shed some more light on was the handwritten portion was getting at. That's it for now. I figured from the New Year's email you received that they we're going to send you an invitation straight out. Maybe next time.
Letter 1, Page Inside - My linear algebra is a bit rusty (can't find my textbook) but this looks like the steps one would take to find the eigenvectors/value of a matrix. I'll keep digging and if anything looks interesting, I'll email that to ya. Envelope 2, Page 1 - Mutatis Mutandis = "the necessary changes having been made"
Letter #2 - more graph paper
The coordinates (32.231N, 110.96W) are pretty much ground zero Tucson, Az.
Dave: The coordinate in the second letter looks like the corner of University and Hoft on Mapquest. You can't put the full precision in their form, but I tweaked the raw URL parameters and it came up fine. Don't know what kind of precision Mapquest stores data at, but I think there's a place called Gatspy's Pizza on that corner. Close to the University, but not as busy as Frog-n-Firkin. Might be a good meeting place. One last note on the graph paper. The coordinate shows up exactly the same on the front and the back. What is the possibility that whoever printed this off, put the graph paper the in wrong orientation (Face down instead of face up.) the first time? It's happened to everyone at least once when printing on specialized paper. It just doesn't seem necessary to have it on both the front and the back of the paper.
Envelope #1 - random xerox things, clocks and barometers
Envelope #2 - hell if i know
The coordinate in the second letter looks like the corner of University and Hoft on Mapquest. You can't put the full precision in their form, but I tweaked the raw URL parameters and it came up fine. Don't know what kind of precision Mapquest stores data at, but I think there's a place called Gatspy's Pizza on that corner. Close to the University, but not as busy as Frog-n-Firkin. Might be a good meeting place. One last note on the graph paper. The coordinate shows up exactly the same on the front and the back. What is the possibility that whoever printed this off, put the graph paper the in wrong orientation (Face down instead of face up.) the first time? It's happened to everyone at least once when printing on specialized paper. It just doesn't seem necessary to have it on both the front and the back of the paper.
Bill: Envelope 2, page2. Perhaps this is an illustration from Jules Verne's "Journey to the Center of the Earth". See Chapter 32, "Battle of the Elements", as the three adventurers, adrift on their single-masted raft, encounter a storm: "The lightning never ceases to flash for a single instant. I can see the zigzags after a rapid dart strike the arched roof of this mightiest of mighty vaults. If it were to give way and fall upon us! Other lightnings plunge their forked streaks in every direction, and take the form of globes of fire, which explode like bombshells over a beleaguered city." The picture might be photocopied from an illustrated harcover edition, but as far as I can tell from my research, it's out of print.
- Bob: Envelope 2, Page 3: The graphic pictured is what is called a Smith Chart, which is used to calculate various characteristics of a transmission line, including impedence and admittance. It was developed in 1939 by Philip Smith, who is variously reported to have worked for Bell Labs and/or RCA. For a page devoted to Smith Charts, see here. Generally, that site uses a simplified version of the chart. For the full Smith Chart in PDF format, click on the Smith Chart link on this page.
Bill - envelope 2, page 1 (mutatis mutandis) -- anyone comment on this? some kind of runic alphabet of course, but the usual suspects -- futhark, tolkien's angerthas, etc. -- don't seem to match very well. will keep looking; best of luck in the meantime....
Envelope #3 - hell if i know, part tres
- Page 2, from http://vulcan.ee.iastate.edu/~dickerson/classes/ee324example/, class examples for an electrical engineering class at Iowa State. Class name: "Communications and Digital Signal Processing". This page: "Give the frequency domain representation for a periodic discrete signal."
Bob: Just in case no one else has mentioned it, the coin depicted on Envelope 3, Page 3, is the so-called Brasher Doubloon. In fact, it appears to be the same coin that is in the Smithsonian's collection; see here.
The Archimedian Spiral reproduced in Envelope 3, Page 4, also appears to be copied. An exact duplicate appears here on a web page that says it was last updated in January, 1997.
clue: You probably got 10 or 12 people sending you the same clue but the recent stuff (envelope 3 page 3) with the two coins taped at the bottom is a Brasher Doubloon. Look at the link at the bottom of 89-feb8.html.
Hi there I got your runes ;-) (envelope #2, page 1) That reference to the 19th century was all I needed, Thankyou!! :-) ... They are from Jules Verne's 'Journey to the Centre of the Earth' (really!) - Chapter 3. Unfortunately I don't have a copy to hand so I had to trawl the net to check it out. In chapter 3 the Prof has found a *coded* runic message left by one Arne Saknussemm, a C16th Icelandic alchemist. This is the Profs transliteration as the website gives it: "mm.rnlls esrevel seecIde sgtssmf vnteief niedrke kt,samn atrateS saodrrn emtnaeI nvaect rrilSa Atsaar .nvcrc ieaabs ccrmi eevtVl frAntv dt,iac oseibo KediiI" Now, the message that was sent to you isn't exactly the same, changes have been made to some of the characters (mutatis mutandis) but this is what's given under A. Under B. the runes give the name Arne Rasmussemm (the last rune is a double mm according to the Prof as they discuss the message.) The message as you have it, I'll mark the changes with asterisks, is: mm.rnlls esrevel seecIde sgtssmf vn*t*elef ni*e*drke Ktsamn atrateS *sa*odrrn emtnaeI nvaect rrilSa At*s*aar .n*v*crc ieaabs cc*rmi eevt*V*l fr*A*ntv dt,iac oseibo KediiI Changes in normal reading order: t - their message has e e - theirs has t sa - theirs has 'capitalised' S and another rune which doesn't feature elsewhere, but which could be read as v or u (since runes don't always have a set direction) s - theirs has v v - theirs has s * a d has been inserted in theirs V - doesn't appear to be 'capitalised' in theirs A - as V Now, it's late here and I'm pretty tired so I may have made an error here or there, you might want to check this over, you can find the relevant passage in Verne's novel here:http://www.online-literature.com/verne/journey_center_earth/3/
Might also be a good idea to get hold of a regular paper copy in the library or something and check to make sure that the website has no typo's. Be well (don't work too hard :-))Illustration of the runes on this one - they appear within the text rather than as an illustration..
I've just had a quick look over the runic stuff again to check it and I've just realised that the discrepancies between the runes and the transliteration are in the original text. The runes as they were sent to you look like they are an exact copy from the book, chapter 2. The text in roman characters as it's given in the book, chapter 3 (online version) is doesn't accord with the runes. Weird...http://jv.gilead.org.il/wolcott/CE-allc/02.html