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What is Cicada 3301?

On January 5th 2012, an image was uploaded to various image boards. It contained two messages. One was obvious & easy to read. In white letters on a black background it said:
Hello. We are looking for highly intelligent individuals. To find them, we have devised a test. There is a message hidden in this image. Find it, and it will lead you on the road to finding us. We look forward to meeting the few that will make it all the way through. Good luck. 3301
As promised there was another message hidden inside the image. It was the start of a bizarre, as yet unexplained chain of complex hidden messages leading those who could solve them on a journey across the Internet and around the world towards a destination none of them could predict with certainty. Is it a highly evolved ARG? Is it a recruitment campaign for the NSA? Welcome to the mystery of Cicada 3301.
posted by scalefree on Nov 25, 2013 - 44 comments

Not your average, everyday locust swarm...

That time has come again, the magical time of the century when the, somewhat creepy, bugs we know as the cicada appear. [more inside]
posted by RolandOfEld on May 18, 2011 - 105 comments

Prime Numbers For Web Designers

The Cicada Principle and Why It Matters to Web Designers
posted by veedubya on Apr 7, 2011 - 38 comments

Brood XIII

The invasion has begun. Millions of big, ugly, red-eyed, noisy bugs are beginning an invasion of the Midwestern U.S. today. It won't be pretty. And it's not the first time. Remain calm - the invasion may not be as big a deal as predicted.
posted by Kirth Gerson on May 22, 2007 - 51 comments

Cicada Mania

Cicada Mania.
posted by hama7 on Nov 2, 2006 - 20 comments

Sounds in the Nighttime Trees

Sometimes mistakenly called "locusts", American cicadas come in a wide variety of colors, and make different and distinctive sounds. Some highlights: Diceroprocta viridifascia, Neocicada hieroglyphica, Tibicen marginalis, Tibicen pruinosa, Magicicada septendecim.
posted by interrobang on Jun 20, 2006 - 19 comments

Too much time on their hands...

Cicadaville. We all know cicadas are on their way above ground this summer, but "Most of the information about cicadas in the media is false. Only at Cicadaville.com can you learn the real truth." Protect your children!
posted by adamms222 on May 18, 2004 - 8 comments

Cicadamania

Cicadamania
Periodical Cicada Page
Brood X (17-year)
Cicada: The Other, Other White Meat
Invasion of the Brood - The 17-year cicadas are about to emerge in force
posted by y2karl on May 10, 2004 - 18 comments

Ladies & Gentlemen! Brood X!

The Brood is Back. No, not that Brood. This brood.
posted by grabbingsand on May 7, 2004 - 14 comments

Periodical cicadas

Periodical cicadas, the 13-year and 17-year varieties made up of 23 separate broods, sometimes emerge concurrently, as they did in Missouri in 1998. The result of their combined mating calls is a cacaphony. There are many different varieties of calls: those by Magicicada cassini, Magicicada septendecim and Magicicada septendecula are just a few. Brood XXIII is due this year. The prime numbers of the two cycles make it difficult for predators to evolve matching breeding cycles. More cicada links.
posted by TurkeyMustard on Jun 28, 2002 - 26 comments

1200 video clips

1200 video clips of the American Wilderness, captured by PBS, is a great reminder of the country's natural beauty. For insectly weirdness, check out Maryland's cicada invasion.
posted by owillis on Oct 5, 2001 - 7 comments

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