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Secret message in the Canadian Governor General coat of arms?

Secret message in the Canadian Governor General coat of arms?

Tim Finin, 9:29am 4 October 2010

Personal coat of arms of David Johnson, Governor General of CanadaSlashdot highlights another mystery today — what’s the meaning of the binary sequence along the bottom of the personal coat of arms of David Johnston, Canada’s new Governor-General.

“As de facto head of state and the Queen’s representative in Canada he is required to design a personal coat of arms. One modern detail has attracted particular attention – a 33-digit palindromic binary stream at the base. Efforts to decode the meaning of the number using ASCII, Morse, grouping by 3/11 and other theories has so far come up empty (right now it’s a toss up between random, the phone number 683-077-0643 and Morse code for ‘send help – trapped in a coat of arms factory.’) Is 110010111001001010100100111010011 the combination to his luggage, or just a random stream of digits?”

Here’s a theory that I hope might be true. As an educator and former president of a university known for its strength in computer science, maybe he is trying to interest Canadian children in mathematics and computer science by giving them a an intriguing puzzle to work on.

2 Responses to “Secret message in the Canadian Governor General coat of arms?”

  1. MH Says:

    Here’s one possibility. There are 33 numbers but really there are 16 numbers starting on the left followed by a 1 in the middle and starting from the right edge the same 16 numbers are repeated in reverse order.

    If you assume the left and right sides are simply a mirror image of each other then we have only 16 numbers + the 1 in the middle that can be used by either side.

    Now, if we use only the 16 and the middle number we have:


    which translates into the number: 203 1461 which is a phone number in downtown toronto (toronto being the home of the GG.) The number specifically is for a person living at 77 Harbour square, a location that is immediately next to the Queens Quay and looks across the water directly at Queen’s Quay Terminal. That location is also right next to the Westen Harbour Castle.

    Pretty coincidental for a man who is supposed to be representing the Queen in Canada don’t you think?

  2. MH Says:

    One also has to wonder why that particular person’s phone number (as opposed to anyone else in that building) might have been chosen. Is there a direct connection between S. Ross (the person’s name) and the new GG?