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Rosetta Stone

February 26th, 2005 by Multimedia Mike

After my SUCON multimedia presentations in Zurich, Switzerland, I bummed around Geneva for a few days. This was the highlight of my European junket. I especially enjoyed my visit to the Museum of Art and History. I was particularly amused by the staff who sat in random locations around the building, reading a book or otherwise occupying themselves, until a visitor came around– then they had to get up and pretend to be studying the art. I found it to be an odd charade. But they were still nice people, letting me stick around even after I tripped at least one alarm.

Since multimedia and reverse engineering were still fresh on my brain, I took a particular interest in the Egyptian exhibit. In particular, I remember the stories of how Egyptian hieroglyphics remained a mystery until the Rosetta Stone was unearthed. Think about it: These archaeologist guys find the pyramids with a bunch of weird writing and have no idea how to decode it. Then one day, someone finds a clue that helps them decipher the puzzle.

Why was this even necessary? The ancient culture probably thought it would be around forever. Probably never conceived that other cultures would surpass theirs, find their old artifacts, and seek to understand what they meant.

Just sort of reminds me of trying to understand antiquated data formats, that’s all…

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