All the numbers inside parentheses are less than or equal to 26, so there could be a correspondence to letters.
The letter number looks like a spreadsheet entry; could be a coordinate system.
I assume from the question mark that the message forms a question; so each "word" of the message could be an English word. s8(9) could mean something like, go to a certain book, section 's', the 8th page, 9th word. Or maybe sections of the perplexus website, science section, 8th problem, 9th word.
Sorry for the rambling, but that's all I have right now, someone must've sunk my battleship. My compliments to the cryptkeeper on what looks like a very difficult puzzle.
Posted by Larry
on 2004-04-14 00:19:47