Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Multiplying Owls and a Possible Treasure Hunt??

Post already updated (twice!) with info on The Times (UK) leak! See notes in red below!

One of this blog's visitors predicted today's owl count!  Not only that, she did so using a way of deciphering the numbers which led to her prediction that Pottermore would be an encyclopedia.

The theory posted by Molly in a prior thread in the comment trail plotted out the owl number differentiation over the last few days, but it was hard to decipher in comments.  I think her idea can be better presented with this graph:

click to enlarge
Basically what is done here is to take the number of owls each day and then chart the difference between daily owl counts, and to continue to do this consecutively, until you reach the number 101.  According to Molly, 101 is code for basic information, like Biology 101, Stats 101.  And basic information is an encyclopedia!

This may seem a bit convoluted, but one thing that impressed me was that Molly accurately predicted today's owl count as an increase of 7, which works in this formula.

Molly, if you're reading this, please let me know if I've presented your info correctly.

What I like about this is that it charts the owls over 7 days -- and we all know how magical the number 7 is to JK Rowling.  Also, it works with all the other evidence we've seen for an encyclopedia;

  • the notes from the original Secret Street View, which documented details from the books, aspects of JKR's career, and memories of fandom -- all of which would be included in an encyclopedia
  • the fixed numbers on her Youtube -- which many seem to point to the same kind of detailed information as above
  • the fixed videos on Youtube -- which document important dates in her career, and in one she specifically references the encyclopedia

What do you think?  Does this analysis of the numbers work for you?  One concern I have -- could you take any set of numbers and eventually get down to 101? But could you do it in so few steps?



What other theories can you make out of this?  Remember the owl difference each day is (2-4-4-5-5-7)

Finally, I'd like to say that my best guess is that Pottermore will most likely include the long-awaited encyclopedia, but I think it will be larger than that.  I think it will be a Potter/Wizarding World Universe to include gaming, social media, the encyclopedia, and maybe even a place for fanfiction/fanart, etc.

What's your final guess?  Make your prediction now!

UPDATE !!: Exciting news is being posted online and one of this blog's visitors, JFeijten, has Tweeted about it and provided a link: http://yfrog.com/z/h4wk2p

Supposedly this is an article from The Times UK with secret information about Pottermore which was accidentally leaked from JK Rowling's representatives.

What it says is that Pottermore will be an online game but with real treasures hidden in the real world, leading players on a world-wide treasure hunt.

What rings true to me about this possibility is that it touches on two key ingredients to JKR's potion for success which I have analyzed for many years in my workshop A Writer's Guide to Harry Potter: 1) a fabulously plotted trail-of-clues mystery, and 2) reader involvement.  One reason critics of Potter never fully comprehend for JKR's phenomenal success was not only that she got kids reading, but she got them INVOLVED in her story.  She played a game with you from the very beginning, which especially deepened with Prisoner of Azkaban.

So, like her leading us on a world-wide GPS hunt to piece together Pottermore, I could see her conducting a real-life treasure hunt to involve her readers in this new venture.

However, that can't be all it is.  I think all our theories so far regarding the encyclopedia and other possibilities for Pottermore are still valid.  A world-wide treasure hunt will not continue indefinitely.  There has to be something to back it up.  And that will be the Pottermore Universe of all that we've been deciphering here!

When the news is released tomorrow, if it is indeed a treasure hunt, come back here with your clues, and like we're doing now, we'll decipher them together!  Because, ya know, that's what wizards do! :-)

Update 2: Just had a thought -- IF, and I mean IF, Pottermore does begin as a scavenger hunt, could JKR have already hidden some of the GPS coordinates and other clues in the Youtube Flash? We've been playing with various theories on this blog as to what those numbers mean, and one I was testing early on was that some of the groupings of numbers could come together to form GPS coordinates (like those video viewer #s coupled with 50 or 4/2).  However, when I plugged them into SecretStreetView, they did not reveal any new letters.  But some were true coordinates.  So, MAYBE, they could reveal one or two of the hidden treasures to be revealed tomorrow!

If so, I think some locations hinted at in the video may need to be investigated as well:  Harvard, New York, Leavesden.

Here's a chart of possible coordinate numbers hidden on the Pottermore Youtube.  I've listed them as decimal coordinates such as those used in StreetView.  Not only do you have to put together various combinations of 2 and 3 digit numbers with 5 and 6 digit ones, but you have to check each possibility with both positive and negative combinations.  Those to the left in red I consider more likely possibilities.  Plus, I've included 17, the most recent number released through JKR's Pottermore Tweet!

click to enlarge

Ok guys, please keep in mind that I'm simply guessing along with all of you. I have no inside knowledge. This theory of coordinates hidden in the Pottermore Youtube could be totally wrong.  Messing around charting all the various combination is a major TIME-SUCK!  So, proceed at your own risk! (But let us know if you find something!!! :-)

Follow prior posts deciphering Pottermore clues at the Pottermore label

33 comments:

  1. Guys, if you're reading this post, hit refresh, as I just updated with a couple of last minute thoughts!

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  2. A very interesting theory!! And I like your thoughts on it as well, Susan. Can't wait for tomorrow, when we find out!!

    Barbara
    http://roomofradcliffe.com

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  3. A world-wide treasure hunt?

    That sounds so friggin badass

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  4. I can't be just a treasure hunt. That's the main reason why I don't buy that article in The Times. It it possible that there is a treasure hunt, but like you said there has to be something to back it all up. The treasurehunt will be something great for some fans in some countries, but certainly not for everyone. Therefore, I too, believe that there has to be more about Pottermore than the thing The Times revealed.

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  5. Thanks Barabara! (And so glad you put your name below. I'm getting confused with Anonymouses, Anonymousi ?? :-)

    I agree, Pamela, but like Jeremy says, it can't be JUST a scavenger hunt. That, to me, would be the introduction, to get help spread the work and get people quickly excited about whatever the bulk of Pottermore truly is.

    Because, I agree with Jeremy, I don't think JKR would do Pottermore in such a way that people everywhere could not participate.

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  6. Molly's math prowess is jaw dropping impressive. I'm more a language arts girl myself. The prospect of a treasure hunt is amazing - I feel adrenaline simmering all over the globe.

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  7. Post has been updated, AGAIN, with new possibility regarding the scavenger hunt. Could some of the coordinates be already revealed?

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  8. I find it hard to believe that something so ostentatiously secretive would be leaked in such a sloppy way. I think this has to be either a stunt to mislead people, or some sort of clue. But how do you "accidentally" send snippets of information to possibly Britain's biggest newspaper?

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  9. Leslie - you're not alone with simmering adrenaline. And this is exactly one of the huge things that made Potter so successful - JKR's masterful plotting of clues and reader involvement!

    Anonymous - probably no accident at all. My guess is exactly what you suggest - to help flame the fire. Think of how much more people are excited about what's to come than if she'd simply issued a press release and opened the site last week! :-)

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  10. Guys, the blog has been updated with a chart of possible coordinates for the possible scavenger hunt tomorrow. Please check it and let me know what you think? Am I sleep-deprived and crazy?

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  11. Thank you for doing this, Susan. I'm really excited about the whole thing and it's great that there are people who are as interested (involved/obsessed/crazy) about the POTTERMORE idea (whatever it is) as I am.

    I like this theory of yours very much and I want it to be true:

    "I'd like to say that my best guess is that Pottermore will most likely include the long-awaited encyclopedia, but I think it will be larger than that. I think it will be a Potter/Wizarding World Universe to include gaming, social media, the encyclopedia, and maybe even a place for fanfiction/fanart, etc."

    I'm not good with analysis and theories, but I couldn't help expressing my thoughts and feelings on the matter in the post I titled "From the Memories of the Harry Potter Addict" at this link: http://ethelnorthbrook.dreamwidth.org/5974.html

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  12. I agree that I hope it isn't just a treasure hunt, because that would cut most fans out right from the start--and Jo has never been exclusionist in that way. I can't wait for tomorrow!!!
    Barbara
    http://roomofradcliffe.com

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  13. I will be very disappointed if this is just part of the existing Harry Potter franchise. I hope this is leading to new written material by JKR. I don't think I would care for a multiplayer game or a social networking site. To me that seems pure business not art and I like to think of JRK as an artist.

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  14. They confirmed, it wasn't a stunt, it was a real leak :(
    http://paidcontent.org/article/419-rowling-rep-confirms-pottermore.com-memo-leak/

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  15. To be honest.. I never liked math.. ever. But when it comes to Harry Potter I know that you either have to look way too far into it, or the answer is right in your face. Sorry I couldn't respond earlier, but what I'm really excited that this was put up over my theory. I think I got the release date wrong though. I said February 1, 2012 when it most likely would be January 2, 2012
    2-1-1-2

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  16. I really think it will be an encyclopedia and I truly believe that the release date is January 2, 2012. No matter what it is, it's just great to finally feel the rush of J.K. Rowling mysteries about to be unfolded once again! I'm going to use my nickname for now on.. - Molly

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  17. But they say that the info there is out of date:

    “The document is an old plan which is now out of date. The full details about the Pottermore project will be revealed at the press conference tomorrow.”

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  18. Molly! You're here!

    Can you tell me if I graphed what you wrote in your comment correctly? You had a few #s that I couldn't quite figure out, which I didn't include.

    And congrats on your accurate guessing of owl #s!!

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  19. Wow! The information is coming out fast and furious now. Thanks Anonymous4:19 for the link! And thanks Farida for deciphering some of it for us.

    Old, they say? But that means at one time it was accurate?

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  20. Although I'm a lover beyond love of HP, I haven't been following this whole thing too much. My only concern with the 'Pottermore' was that it meant more Potter (as in books - which I don't even think I could read because the series ended just as magically as it began). I can't even watch the movies (which I've heard are very well made) because the movies in my head are just what I want to see when I think of everything HP.

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  21. Again, back to my theory, I'm not saying the 2,4,4,5,5,7 means anything (but it very well could!) I'm saying that...

    2
    > 2
    4 > 2
    > 0
    4 > 1
    > 1
    5 > 1
    > 0
    5 > 2
    > 2
    7

    Soo 244557 turns into 20102 which turns into 2112 (2 January, 2012???) and then finally to 101.. basic info hmmm

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  22. Your chart is perfect, thanks! Could be far fetched but I predicted the number to make it a date and it worked.. Only one way to find out though and we only have to wait 14 more hours!!

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  23. A worldwide scavengar hunt reminds me of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which was definitely presented as a huge mess. If it does turn out to be that, I will be dissapointed in JKR. Bad decision to rip a lot of people off. I'm hoping for a sort of RPG with facts hidden in it for you to discover.

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  24. You're right, Molly, we don't have long to wait now. Also, I updated the graph w/ your name. Hope that's ok.

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  25. Barbara, I think you're safe because JKR and her reps have insisted that Pottermore is not a new book. :-)

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  26. Im really hoping the scavenger hunt leak is a fake. It just wouldn't work for people who live in rural areas.

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  27. Farida, I read your post. It was fun and warmly written! :-)

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  28. I love the graph! I looks a lot neater than all the yellow post-its that are covered in numbers all over my desk. I was supposed to be doing my psychology homework but I could never resist a chance to try and decipher the way the most creative imagination I have ever come across works! Ahh life without Harry Potter would be a disaster! :) I'm still waiting for my acceptance letter to Hogwarts.. its about 11 years late but I'm still hoping!

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  29. Guys, all the information on the release is at a new post at: http://harrypotterforwriters.blogspot.com/2011/06/pottermore-final-reveal.html

    I'll respond here shortly when things calm down a bit! :-)

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  30. Molly, did you notice that the date you came up with was January 2012, and they're saying that Chamber of Secrets will be uploaded to Pottermore around that time? :-)

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  31. try a binary code

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  32. Guys, I've posted with a possible new clue to early entry for Pottermore, with help from one of this blog's commentators. Check: http://bit.ly/pufK8I

    Anonymous -- thanks for the tip on the binary code. Will look at it. Meanwhile, see what you think of this! :-)

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  33. We really are the Harry Potter generation! From here on, people will never know what it's like to wait for a HP book or movie to be released. I hope future generations love HP just as much as we do :).

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