Computing > Security

Nerds solve 50+ years old Zodiac killer's cipher

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DrG:
"Dubbed the "340 cipher," the message was unraveled by a trio of code breakers -- David Oranchak, a software developer in Virginia, Jarl Van Eycke, a Belgian computer programmer, and Sam Blake, an Australian mathematician."  https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/11/us/zodiac-killer-cypher-340-code-trnd/index.html

Website: http://www.zodiackillerciphers.com/

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1oQLPRE21o&feature=youtu.be

TheNewLab:
Well I think this is cool.

 IT happening was before my time, however, I remember the later years and periodic articles over the years.
Sent the links to my sister who was stationed in SF during those years working as a stewardess. She was scared.

DrG:

--- Quote from: TheNewLab on December 12, 2020, 03:02:57 am ---Well I think this is cool.

--- End quote ---

Agreed. How they solved it is a terrific story. Nothing but respect for people who get together to solve something because it is there.

TomS_:
Its a tiny bit spooky that just a month or so before cracking it, the guy was giving a presentation about how they were looking into various patterns that had been discovered, like the one down two across kind of transposition which eventually became part of the solution. You almost kind of wonder if they knew at that stage if there was any significance in that but just didnt say anything, or if there was a massive light bulb moment shortly after...

I guess if you spend enough time looking at something you'll start to see these kinds of patterns and can start working on them to see if they have any meaning.

Learned a lot by watching these videos. Pretty basic cipher overall, but lots of good information about techniques and features of the english language that you might never have known about otherwise!

ledtester:
The one-down two-across pattern was noted several years ago:

https://youtu.be/BV5R3TBMWJg?t=14m04s

(A talk at the 2015 Cryptologic History Symposium on October 22, 2015.)

I guess it just took a long time to investigate it vigorously.

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