In Episode 13 of Robotics;Notes, the most recent one, Frau Koujiro takes 19 random images found in the leaked final episode of Gunvarrel, and by manipulating those images, she manages to get 19 completely different images with hidden letters in them. Surely this is silly and unrealistic. Nope, it’s actually quite plausible.
Hop on, reader, and assume the role of Frau, as I teach you about the wonders of Steganography and have you reveal the subliminal images found in that clip yourself! (As long as you have PhotoShop or GIMP… otherwise you’ll have to take my word for it.)
(If any of thee images don’t show up due to minus’ hotlinking limitations, here’s a link to the gallery containing every image in this article, though refreshing usually fixes it)
Before I go on, keep in mind this is entirely speculation. All I know on this subject is what I’ve learned in the past few hours after a blog I really like posted a review on the new episode, that pointed out how her method seemed farfetched. I decided to look into it, and now I have an explanation I like. As Akiho would say, I’m fired up. That doesn’t mean it’s the truth, for all I know, in the year 2019 they have amazing magical programs that automatically do this for you, or perhaps another method of steganography was used. But putting that aside… get your PhotoShop ready, and follow along!
The Scenario: Frau Finds the Subliminal Message
Pretend you are Frau Koujiro, and you just watched the leaked Gunvarrel clip on MewTube. It’s a 4 minutes and 31 seconds long crudely pieced together video, and something stands out: 19 seemingly random and unrelated images are present in the clip. You then download the leaked episode and export those frames for further investigation.
Now, from the look of those images, they all seem to be stock photos of famous places, events, objects, or people. They were probably pulled straight from the internet and put on that clip. Wondering the meaning behind them, you decide to reverse image search the pictures on Deluoode, and to no surprise you easily find the original ones, along with information on them. After a lot of research, you arrive at the conclusion the images are truly random, and by chance, you decide to compare the frame from the video with the original picture.It’s barely noticeable at all, but you have a perceptive eye, and notice that the frame from the video is ever so slightly darker than the picture you found on Deluoode, which came from the We-Key Pedophiria article for the guy. It wouldn’t hurt to investigate that, so it’s time to Open PhotoShop! (Sorry, I don’t have a Science Adventure’s parody name for that)…
Now follow along if you can, and you’ll know this is for real. Open the video frame, Figure A, on PhotoShop (GIMP and others will probably work but you’ll have to adapt it yourself). Now copy and paste Figure B, the picture from the internet, on PhotoShop on top of Figure A. Select the top layer and change the layer blend mode to Difference. Then, flatten the image (Layer -> Flatten Image) so that it’s a single layer. You’ll end up with the following:It doesn’t take you long at all to notice there’s more to this image than the difference in darkness between the two versions of the picture you had. What comes next? Kona-chan said it herself in the episode, so you – being her – should know! Level correcting! Go to Image -> Adjustments -> Levels. Step 1: Click the White Eyedropper (“Sample in image to set white point”) and click on the lightest part of the image that’s around the bottom right corner. Suddenly, the whole image lights up and it should already be pretty obvious what you’re looking at. Of course we’ll do a complete job, so Step 2: Select the Black Eyedropper (“Sample in image to set Black Point”) and click on the red color, and it will turn into black. Good job, here’s your subliminal image! The same one from the episode! Incredible, huh? It wasn’t so implausible in the end. Now you just need to do the same with the remaining 18 pictures from the leaked episode, and you’re set to find the password to dark history! Go lick some fingers!
Hiding Images Within Images
Okay, so, unlikely as that may be, you’re tired of being Frau Koujiro. You know how to find subliminal images, but you want to know how I set this whole post up and hid the room’s image inside the guy’s image. Very well then, because I couldn’t find any good tutorial myself, I’ll briefly explain it to you!
Updated Jan 25th with magical link above.