WiseOwl Training - Established 1992 Wise Owl Training

Established May 1992
30 years in business
Wise Owl Training
30 years in business
See 482 reviews for our classroom and online training
March 2022 Newsletter Competition - Words in Pictures
One of your special agents has sent you an Excel worksheet containing a picture - your task is to decipher the message it represents!

Posted by Andy Brown on 25 February 2022

You need a minimum screen resolution of about 700 pixels width to see our blogs. This is because they contain diagrams and tables which would not be viewable easily on a mobile phone or small laptop. Please use a larger tablet, notebook or desktop computer, or change your screen resolution settings.

March 2022 Newsletter Competition - Words in Pictures

You've received the following message from a sleeper agent in one of the repressive regimes that you monitor:

Message in picture

You suspect that the message contains text, and want to decrypt it.  Helpfully, the agent has included the picture in this Excel workbook.


You've worked out that each cell's interior colour has a red, green and blue component, and suspect that the first two digits of these numbers (which can go from 0 up to 255) represent the letters of the alphabet, with 0 being A, 1 being B, etc.

The first cell has the colour RGB(130,140,220), which translates to letters 14, 15 and 23 in the alphabet, giving the word NOW.

Your task is to decipher the message.  If you don't know VBA you can do this using Excel formulae, but you may find it useful to download this Excel workbook first (it contains a handy custom GetColour function to get at the colours used in a cell). 

When you've deciphered the text, send the name of the book from which it has been extracted to this email address:

Email address

Send your answer to this email address.  You're welcome to speculate on the meaning of the text!


The first correct answer pulled out of Rushi (our Randomised Unbiased Sorting Hat for Information) will win this month's £50 Amazon voucher and a modicum of fame. 

This blog has 0 threads Add post