Solve a code sculpture with a clock? Kryptos, meet the Berlin Clock.
July 8, 2015
Mengenlehreuhr (German for "Set Theory Clock") or Berlin-Uhr ("Berlin Clock") is the first public clock in the world that tells the time by means of illuminated, coloured fields, for which it entered the Guinness Book of Records upon its installation in 17 June 1975.
Commissioned by the Senate of Berlin and designed by Dieter Binninger, the original full-sized Mengenlehreuhr was originally located at the Kurfürstendamm on the corner with Uhlandstraße. After the Senate decommissioned it in 1995, the clock was relocated to a site in Budapester Straße in front of Europa-Center, where it stands today.
Telling the time based on the "set theory principle", the Mengenlehreuhr consists of 24 lights which are divided into one circular blinking yellow light on top to denote the seconds, two top rows denoting the hours and two bottom rows denoting the minutes.
(Wired) In 1989, the year the Berlin Wall began to fall, American artist Jim Sanborn was busy working on his Kryptos sculpture, a cryptographic puzzle wrapped in a riddle that he created for the CIA’s headquarters and that has been driving amateur and professional cryptographers mad ever since.
The 12-foot-high, verdigrised copper, granite and wood sculpture on the grounds of the CIA complex in Langley, Virginia, contains four encrypted messages carved out of the metal, three of which were solved years ago. The fourth is composed of just 97 letters, but its brevity belies its strength. Even the NSA, whose master crackers were the first to decipher other parts of the work, gave up on cracking it long ago. So four years ago, concerned that he might not live to see the mystery of Kryptos resolved, Sanborn released a clue to help things along, revealing that six of the last 97 letters when decrypted spell the word “Berlin”—a revelation that many took to be a reference to the Berlin Wall.