I don't know if this has now been stated clearly anywhere, but we now have a pretty definite answer to Jacob's Cabin.
Ilana is definitely team Jacob. She knows the rules, and was looking for Jacob when she went to the cabin. "Someone else has been using it", means someone other than Jacob. She also noted that the ash ring was broken. We know a ring of ash keeps out the Smoke Monster. The Ash ring was therefore to keep Smokey out, not to keep him in. The break in the ash means that Smokey can get in.
After this, they torch the cabin to stop it from being used.
This now gives us some more or less definite conclusions:
- Jacob was using the cabin for things he did not want to know the MiB to know about.
- Jacob's tapestry in the Cabin & tapestry in the statue = Jacob's Plans; Ilana found part of this tapestry in the cabin.
- someone deliberately created a gap in the ash.
- MiB has been in the cabin, so he has found a part of or a copy of Jacob's plan. This might have been a deliberate scam by Jacob.
We should also note:
- No ash around the statue,
- No ash around the lighthouse.
- No ash around Jacob on the beach
This means that Jacob does not use ash to protect himself, merely for privacy.
Any theories about what the ash is?