User talk:Thebruce

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Nice influx of newbies on the forums, eh? LOL. How hard is it to just read a few threads before posting THE most obvious observations? --Pandora 16:22, 24 July 2006 (MDT)

yup, I was thinking the same thing... sheesh --thebruce 16:43, 24 July 2006 (MDT)

mp3 upload

I have a short MP3 file of something in the game, can you enable Mediawiki so as to allow that file extension, at least for a short time? -- Lostpedian 22:04, 15 September 2006 (MDT)


If you're going to hack something to find the solution, no one can stop you. But enjoy the answer to yourself or post it on Unfiction. Spoiling it on the OE forums was in poor taste. I really hope you didn't do it for some short-sighted self-glorification. I know I got really stuck on the grid puzzle, and I'm sure you did too. So then I linked directly to to the prize6.swf to view the video before going to bed... I also picked up Ararat, though through the images and the "Ar" symbol of the sixth puzzle. I suspect you did the same, and came up with the wave connection in order to justify posting it - but that is working backwards. I cheated, and after that point I did not spoil it for others. Also, by spoiling it so openly, you make TPTB more cautious and they react by tightening up security. -- Lostpedian 21:08, 16 September 2006 (MDT)

Your arguments are quite thin, since everything I posted was spoilered, except for the answer, which would come out anyway no matter who solved it or when it was solved, or even how. For one, as I have said so many times, the answer came through deduction of the clues not through 'cheating', which it was not. Controversial it may be, that I managed to get a clue as to the answer through the flash script, but looking at the flash script is only as 'cheating' as viewing the HTML source of a page, but obviously in your case, as controversial as brute forcing. Community was respected, people given the choice to see the solution or not. The solution could be retrieved through deduction, though for some much less easily than others.

That said, I don't think you have any right to talk, since you posted controversial and now believed entirely OOG photos in the forums, without reference to how or when you got them, 'assuming' that everyone already knew. You're the only one making a fuss about the Ararat solve, while many people were more bothered by the flickr fiasco. So don't you be casting stones.

We're in this together, and we're working as a community, not in competition against each other. Let's encourage each other and promote individual as well as group thinking. The more we argue, the more it detracts from others experience.

As for your MP3, tell me of what it is, and send me the file and I'll upload it to the site for linking.

--thebruce 21:46, 16 September 2006 (MDT)

There seems to be a widespread consensus among the ARG community that decompiling Flash is probably crossing the line and peeking behind the curtain too much. Many people, like me, think that if you're going to peek, that you should not post about what you find. When I discovered the images, there is no way I thought it was out of bounds. And when EWO deleted the thread and the images were taken down, I explained fully how I found them and that is the last time I did anything related to them. Even if I found something by those means, I'd not post about it openly anymore. I think the community can stand a little arguing if it means we can avoid spoiling things like that. Your comment about how it "would come out anyway" is irrelevant, because for all we know it would have come out in a much more interesting way. Please just keep this in mind the next time. -- Lostpedian 01:18, 17 September 2006 (MDT)
  • Dude, do not presume to lecture me on the 'ethics' of args. Did you even read the first hit from your search link on google for the unfiction thread about the ethics of decompiling flash? take a look, becuase you'll be pleased to know that everything I did was exactly what they considered fine and dandy. By your own link, you defended my actions, so I thank you for that. Let me quote some, just in case you can't be bothered to link...
  • "people have already pulled apart the site with reckless abandon, or you could have the fun of doing it on your own. It's all fair game, so don't deny yourself the thrill of discovery." - catherwood
  • "just if you find anything from that method spoiler it" - RPGgame
  • "I've torn apart all the flash. I don't have any problem with it...Decomp can also be useful for extracting the images, rather than print screening. At this point it is pretty clear that the PMs are watching us do I assume they can compenstate for it, or tell us not to do it. So basically, use the site like a normal user. Have a look around, play through it. and then if you want, decompile" - colin (moderator)
  • "examining the HTML of previous ARGs seemed to be just part of the game. they're not using HTML in this game, so from my perspective, it'd be expected that you un-flash it." - MrBeefy
  • "...I prefer not to circumvent the immersive experience, nor cheat by looking for answers to a logic puzzle. But if someone codes a puzzle by embedding the answers in plain sight (as I have seen with javascript in the past, checking if(submitted=="answer") for example), well, I'm sorry but that's just bad programming. People WILL look in the back of the book, so to speak." - catherwood
  • "...I guess I have mixed feelings about decompiling, but I do appreciate when people spoiler-tag what they find. After all, the fun is in the journey, what do you get by skipping straight ahead to the answer?" - weforgottenuno
  • "...Sorta like saying "We figured out that OB:EY shows up on the clock, and that it links to here and there and this happens, but just so people can find out after the fact, let's determine the time structure of that happening...Besides, the PMs are clearly patching up the holes where the holes need to be patched...I say we should have this option, y'know?" - theshaggy
  • "Whether flash decomp is ethical or not is kinda beside the's going to be done by someone and the results will probably be posted somewhere, so good PMs should be prepared to deal with that, whether through prior planning or battlefield damage control" - cavalos
  • "it's no holds barred as far as I'm concerned. Go for it!" - sidey77
  • "I think decompiling the flash is really no different from looking at HTML, JavaScript, XML, EXIF metadata etc. etc. With SWF they could easily hide parts of the code they don't want people to see and use server-based authentication if they didn't want us finding passwords etc. in the SWF files. But I agree that some people find this at least partially unethical, so out of curtesy I think that anything found this way should be marked as a spoiler." - ixalon
  • "This community has played many games for many (several?) years and has already come to terms with decompiling Flash -- it has never (as far as i can remember) been tagged or spoilered before, and we're not going to change." - catherwood (moderator)
is that sufficient for you or should I quote more? what I did is not a first, it's quite commonly done, and people generally don't have a problem with it if the answers are spoilered. Since my post spoilered the solution, I don't see any leg for you to stand on except that you didn't like that I looked at the flash source, and you are fully entitled to your opinion. You had every right, if you did get to the solve, to post it in the same fashion that I did, but you chose not to. That was your choice, so don't be railing on me for posting the answer. To be honest, I've only seen people post their solutions as soon as they find them, for the community, rather than hording it to themselves. You ever see the '10 commandments of args'? Post your answers! But be respectful and give people a choice of whether to see them or not. There's no rule that says to hold back on your sharing of solutions for sufficient time for people to have attempted it themselves. That's their own choice. Just don't force the solution down their throat if they don't want to see it yet.
I posted my answer because it had to be posted at some point. The fun is getting to that answer. Sure I could have spoilered the answer as well, perhaps I should have, and maybe that would have got you off my back. But again I stress: I did not get the answer from the flash . The answer was not in plain site, and though I did try to reverse engineer the code, I didn't get to an answer, and I went back to the clues, with the help of a little bit of guidance.
The general consensus, even the critical opinions, are that 1) the PMs should know better than to hide answers in anything that the user will receive 2) the PMs have the right to lay out rules, thus warning people against decompiling flash 3) it's unfair to post answers that were gained by decompiling flash especially if there's no non-hacked solution available to get the result, without spoilering the solve. 4) flash source and html source are fair game
So, it is a balance of knowing how the game has been progressing, the coding ability of the PMs, their intelligence, their laid out rules, and what, in context of the ARG and the community, could be construed as 'cheating'. There is no right or wrong here, outside of opinion. So the only answer everyone agrees on is spoiler the answer if it was gained through a flash decompile.
  • And once again, my answer was not gained from the flash decompile, and my solve was spoilered anyway!
That said, I'm done justifying myself to you, since you're the only one who's upset about this, and the only reason I can think of is that you did the same thing, but didn't post anything. Sorry, but that was your choice. You got credit (even by me) for the music solve. I don't even care about credit. I just posted my results, after working hours on it, so that we could move on; as we've all done on past puzzles. So do us all a favour and drop the subject so we can continue working together.
--thebruce 20:19, 17 September 2006 (MDT)

You know, it doesn't make your argument any more sound by pulling out random quotes of people that may only marginally agree with you,a nd I refuse to post quotes out of context. The problem is that you are failing to respect that there are two kinds of spoiler solutions - normal means and "behind the curtain". Here is my proposal, and I think it is fair. If you arrive at a solution through decompiling or other "behind the curtain" methods, post your solution on Unfiction. I just think it is insulting and disrespectful of the creators of this very interesting story to sit there on their forums and brag about decompiling. It also offends at least a few members of the board. No, maybe not even a majority of readers would be this critical of you, but I'd respect you more if, like me, you choose what you "solve" more appropriately. The OE forums have devolved into too much META as it is. Not all PMs like to directly lay out "rules" (a decision I prefer), but one can infer them even still. Has any clue in OE come even from an HTML source? Have we had to figure out any secret passwords? No. Musical and symbol puzzles are all we've gotten. I infer from this that TPTB did not design and do not want us to look for answers in the source code. Let's do work together, but within the confines of the story. -- Lostpedian 22:55, 17 September 2006 (MDT)

There is no premise to require strict rules here, except that everyone play nice, and people are given the chance to solve for their own. They are not 'random' quotes, they are specific quotes, within context, from various people within the unfiction community, both new and veteran. Many comments were made in context of TLE, and many were made in general. The only comments about not doing it, were related to the fact that a rule was laid out not to decompile flash, for that arg. Otherwise, the only fair result for everyone was that it was fair game, as long as you respect other peoples' right to solve on their own, by putting solves in spoilers. I, too, would respect you more if you didn't claim to state the be-all and end-all of all ethical rules, when clearly there are no strict rules in this case, and once again - do you want me to put this is HUGE bold lettering? I did not get the answer from decompiling flash! . Sheesh! The answer could be arrived at entirely through non-decompiled means. Can that not get through to you? If I had not even said anything about looking at the flash source, you'd have absolutely no problem because every step to get the answer was possible 'normally'. Re-read some of the quotes from above. Or re-read the thread I linked. Then re-read the conclusions I quoted from all the places I looked in your google search, both positive and negative. Then get off my case. --thebruce 07:23, 18 September 2006 (MDT)
for reference, how about Who-is lookups? Once thought 'behind the curtain', PMs (smart ones) will either give fictional registration info, or keep it anonymous. If not, well, too bad for the PMs, they should have thought of that. Smart PMs won't now put anything answer-related in HTML source. Likewise, flash solves. If you can sense the PMs aren't that smart, then use your own discression as to what's "fair" or not. That's ultimately where this ends up.
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