Everyone knows Qumulo has a culture of problem-solving, but a challenge last week forced Qumulons to dig way beyond their coding skills.

Last Thursday’s inaugural GrumpHunt – named after the Qumulo Grumpquat mascot – tested employees from across the organization in puzzle-solving, wordplay, riddles and, yes, some HTML, as they worked to solve clues to multiple secret locations in and around downtown Seattle.

Nine teams, with members representing a cross-section of Qumulo workgroups, studied maps, researched on the internet, and used their best puzzle-solving skills while team runners hit the streets.

When they reached a target, they were asked to provide photo of their special “Retract-a-Quat” – our Grumpquat mascot on a retractable badge – on the scene as evidence to the Qluemasters who monitored their progress and kept score.

In the end, Team Cha-Ching, made up of people mostly from Finance and Legal with one from Engineering and one from Product, narrowly won the top prize – a shared outing of their choice and an opportunity to destroy Qumulo’s Grumpinata at a party in Seattle’s swank Belltown neighborhood.

Game taps into Qumulo culture of ‘teaminess’

The idea for the GrumpHunt came from Ezra Cooper, and was planned and executed by Cooper and his fellow technical staff members, Patrick Jakubowski and Shawna Jacques, as well as Technical Content Developer Lindsie Winthrop.

Participants included Qumulons from Engineering, Customer Success, Operations, Finance, Product, Sales, People, and Admin/Facilities/IT.

“There’s something special about this company that inspired me, and I think inspired all the others, to do something like this,” says Cooper. “There’s a terrific feeling of teaminess here that we tapped into, and I think it’s a huge credit to the founders, and the execs, to have created and preserved that feeling.”

The first GrumpHunt was a smashing success, and has set the standard for many GrumpHunts to come.

Want to play?

Below is a selection of questions – and answers – from last Thursday’s GrumpHunt.

Crossword Puzzle

Clue

Answer

Will Chen at KEXP Stage

Will Chen at KEXP Stage

Red light, green light

Clue

html code

Answer

Rainbow Crosswalk

Chris Cole at Rainbow Crosswalk on Capitol Hill

Snap to it!

Clue

Teams received a series of photos and were asked to recreate them with their special “Retract-a-Quat.” For each photo recreated, they received an extra point for up to 10 points. Here’s one example with a successful photo below.

Clue Example:

Mosaic Wall

Answer

Retract-a-Quat at mosaic wall in Seattle Center

Search and Spell

Clue

We’ve planted 5 Grumpquats around the office so keep your eyes peeled! Find them all to decode the secret word. But the fun doesn’t stop there! You’ll only snag these 5 bonus points if you send the Qluemasters a picture of your team spelling out the correct word using only your bodies. Hope you’ve done some yoga lately.

Answer

Team Cha-Ching spells PARTY with their bodies

Winning Team Cha-Ching spelling PARTY with their bodies

Fries with that?

Clue

-.-..–.   .. –..-  …—–. ..-..-…….   .–..-…. -…..– ……..–.-.   ..-….-.. –.—.-..-…-. .-… -.—–..-   .–.-.-..-.- .–.-.-..-.- -.–.–.— -.-..-..—….   .–..-…. …—–. ……-…–. ..-..-.—– -…..   …-.-…-…

[The original Morse Code was overly difficult, the Qluemasters ruefully admit, but several of our teams were able to use their puzzle-solving powers—and some controlled hints—to reach the target anyway.]

Answer

Morse Code Translation: Can I get some fries with that shake? Feel golden as you walk, walk, tan-go-close with some help from the streets.

Tango dance steps on Broadway

Tiffani Carl at the Tango Dance Steps on Broadway

The Towns Are Not What They Seem

Clue

You find this torn piece of paper in a dead man’s pocket:

Scrap of paper

Capture the means by which he came into the city.

Answer

Tina Zhang and Bryan Leary at the ferry boat terminal

Tina Zhang and Bryan Leary at the ferry boat terminal

We’re twice as smart as the people of Shelbyville!

Clue

There’s only one way to get this view. Elvis and Frasier Crane got it, but most Seattleites probably don’t care to. To get it for yourself will require you to buy something. On your proof of purchase is a simple math problem. Tell us the answer (don’t worry, it’s OK to be negative)!

Keep your proof of purchase in mind for a future neighborhood; it might be helpful.

Answer

A ticket for Seattle’s Monorail

Time is Ticking

Clue

Seattle is famous for its street clocks on the sidewalk, like this one in the U District. Runners can snag 1 point (up to a maximum of 10) for each picture of a street clock they come across in their travels.

Answer Example

Nate Horter poses by one of Seattle’s many street clocks

Nate Horter poses by one of Seattle’s many street clocks

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