True Head to Head
Comparison Continues


In response to skeptics who say that you can find codes in any book, we conducted an experiment earlier this year comparing equidistant letter sequences (ELSs) from the Bible and from a Hebrew translation of Tolstoy's War and Peace.

We e-mailed ELSs of a group of Islamic nations in Hebrew to our Hebrew expert, Dr. Nathan Jacobi, along with letters before and after each ELS. We asked him to try to extend them, or to see whether it was possible to make longer phrases or sentences from the one or two word names of nations. Half of the ELSs were taken from the book of Ezekiel and half from a segment of War and Peace. It was a blind experiment, so Dr. Jacobi did not know which text any of the ELSs were from.

The major surprise of the experiment was the discovery of a few long ELSs in War and Peace. However, the results also showed that the Ezekiel searches were significantly more productive than those from War and Peace. The findings of this first phase of the experiment are summarized in the following table, which appeared in the March issue.

In the second phase of this experiment, we asked code researcher and Hebrew expert, Moshe Shak, a native of Israel and an engineer living in Montreal, to examine the same set of Hebrew letter strings. What effect would a different set of eyes have? We summarized the results in the next table.

We had found statistically significant differences between the control and Ezekiel from the translations of another Hebrew expert. And the important “discovery rate” from the control text was very similar (18.6% versus 18.0%).

We also found that there were sizeable differences between the length of the extended ELSs in Ezekiel and War & Peace. For example, 10 of Nathan’s extensions from Ezekiel were 20 or more letters long, while only two from War & Peace were that long. These comparisons are presented below.

Appreciable differences between the length of the extended ELSs in Ezekiel and War & Peace also appeared among Shak’s translations. For example, seven of Moshe’s extensions from Ezekiel were 20 or more letters long, while only two from War & Peace were that long. These comparisons are shown below.

What all of these comparisons told us was that we had blindfolded two Hebrew experts and each had found much more sensible Hebrew around the initial ELSs in Ezekiel than around those in War & Peace. Furthermore, the discovery rate of extensions expected from an ordinary Hebrew text was only in the range of 18.0% to 18.6%—decidedly less than the extension rate we had been experiencing from most of our Biblical investigations.


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