Google I/O is scheduled for May 17 to 19 at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, Calif. Of course you couldn’t expect a company that prides itself on algorithms and computing to just come right out and give the dates though. Instead, it tweeted a puzzle with clues about this year’s annual conference and waited for the tech community to come up with the answer.
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— Google Developers (@googledevs) January 24, 2017
Google I/O dates revealed in cryptic puzzles
To reveal the dates of Google I/O, Alphabet tweeted a link and graphic puzzle on its developer account. If you click on the link in the tweet (embedded above), you’re taken to a page that tells you to “save the date.” That page has a redirect on it which transports you to a page on GitHub. On that page, you find five puzzles; after solving the puzzles, you learn the full details about this year’s Google I/O conference.
Android Police explained how the puzzles were solved. The GitHub repository in the first clue gives a set of coordinates which points to a jungle in Brazil, while the second clue takes you to a YouTube video that’s unlisted but gives you another set of coordinates. The third puzzle gives coordinates in Warsaw, Poland, while the fourth is a riddle found inside a corrupted image which points to Thailand.
After taking the name of the countries in those locations and placing them onto a chess board and then doing a little math, you come up with a jumble of letters that’s easily unscrambled to reveal Shoreline Amphitheatre. It took a Discord channel that was dedicated to finding the solution of the cryptic puzzle. That channel also gave May 17 to 19 as the most likely dates of the conference.
Google I/O held again at the Shoreline
Alphabet has yet to update the Google I/O 2017 page with information, but perhaps it is just giving fans time to solve the puzzle. This year marks the eleventh year Google has held its developers conference and the third year it has held it at the Shoreline Amphitheatre. Most of the previous events have been held at San Francisco’s Moscone Events Center, but apparently Google I/O is just too big for that venue anymore.
It’s expected that the company will again offer the coveted passes to the event using a lottery system. Last year, machine learning was the big theme, but we’ll just have to wait and see what this year’s theme will be.