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Centralization is a common positional extraction method used in hunt puzzles. It involves taking a series of strings and reading the letters at their centres (either one or two letters) to get a new string.
Puzzle Application[edit | edit source]
As with most other positional extraction methods, Centralization is exactly what it sounds like: it involves taking the middles of things. While other methods may involve consistent implied indexing, like Initialization (which always uses an index of 1), Centralization instead changes what the implied index is from string to string depending on their lengths. For example, a 5 letter string would extract the 3rd letter, while an 11 letter string would extract the 6th letter. Additionally, the length of a string can affect how many letters get extracted. Odd-length strings have single-letter centres, while even-length ones will always have double-letter centres.
THEANSWER --> THEANSWER --> N SOLUTION --> SOLUTION --> UT
Centralization is one of the less-common types of positional extraction, partially due to the inability to apply is consistently to any given string, and partially due to it not being overly intuitive to try out without hints. As a result, its use is often coupled with in-text hints towards it being used for extraction.
Strategy[edit | edit source]
Identification[edit | edit source]
Notable Examples[edit | edit source]
- Spaghetti Western (MITMH 2020) (web) - One of the mini-puzzles in this puzzle involves beheading even-length words and taking the middle letters of the resulting words to make a final answer.