Gerald Selby has always loved riddles: where others saw only noise, he strove to find order and harmony. While working at Kellogg's Oatmeal Factory, he analyzed materials to increase shelf life. One day, while studying cereal from other companies, Jerry came across a strange sequence of characters on the back of a General Mills box. Instead of a date and a manufacturing factory, a mysterious code was printed there. Jerry decided to decipher it: taking several boxes of Kellogg's and General Mills breakfasts, he began to compare their moisture content, realizing that cereals with approximately the same moisture content should have close production dates. By making notes on paper, he identified some patterns. Soon he was able to decipher everything that made it possible to determine the place, date and time of manufacture. In a more aggressive line of business, “hacking” competitors' secrets could have been a huge benefit, but not in the production of oatmeal, so management was not enthusiastic about its discovery.
28 february 2021, 12:20