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Comment Dubious, right? (Score 2) 158

Dubious, right? If nobody knows, mandating outside references exudes oddness. Variable acronyms lose time in nervy efforts! :-) In other words, the initial-based decryption as claimed looks like hopeful nonsense rather than a proper decryption as such. More here:-

Submission + - The Lady Magdalene De Lancey Ciphers, now open for (

nickpelling2 writes: "Here are some just-revealed historical ciphers from 1819 that the NSA's cryptologists weren't able to crack. So now it's your turn! To get you started, I suspect it's some kind of verbose cipher or steganography, i.e. where the ciphertext is much longer than the plaintext. Sort of like a lovesick Regency version of Abbot Trithemius. Find Lady Magdalene's ciphering trick & you'll read her secret messages! Go for it, /.ers! ;-)"

Submission + - 105-page masonic initiation cipher cracked! (

nickpelling2 writes: "Ever heard of the "Copiale Cipher"? (Nope, neither had I). It's a 105-page neatly-written ciphertext dated 1886, i.e. a year before the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn was formed. What's neat is that three researchers have just published details of how they decrypted its homophonic cipher. However, they've only transcribed the first 16 pages: might the rest refer to the mysterious Fraulein Anna Sprengler? Cool!"

Submission + - Centuries-old mystery solved.... oh dear :-( ( 1

nickpelling2 writes: "Though the centuries-old "Le Livre Des Sauvages" is hundreds of pages long, its psychosexually demented contents — think "Marquis de Sade's bad dream diary" — place it in a category all of its own... Ciphered Books You'd Have To Be Mad Yourself To Want To Decrypt. Basically, it's 100x more suited to bad T-shirt art than to cryptological study. For those brave few who haven't yet pressed PageDown, today's must-read story comes courtesy of intrepid Cipher Mysteries expert Nick Pelling, who has — at considerable personal risk — put together a handy guide to reading Le Livre's pictures, just for you. Errrm... enjoy!"

Submission + - The secrets of the Chaocipher finally revealed! (

nickpelling2 writes: In 1918, John F. Byrne invented a truly amazing cipher system called "The Chaocipher", that fitted inside a small cigar box, could be operated by a ten-year-old, yet produced practically unbreakable ciphertext (arguably even stronger than the Nazi Enigma machine). But now, thanks to the efforts of Chaocipher fan Moshe Rubin and the generous gift of Byrne's cryptographic effects by his daughter-in-law Pat Byrne to the National Cryptologic Museum, the secrets of the Chaocipher are finally starting to be revealed — it's a great story.

To accompany Moshe Rubin's excellent textual description of the Chaocipher, I've posted a 30-second animation of the Chaocipher in action to YouTube, just in case anyone wants to see the most devious cipher of the 20th century in action (sort of). :-)

Comment Re:Debunked almost a year ago (Score 1) 320

That's my blog: I've been documenting Edith Sherwood's amazing (but wobbly) Voynich claims for the last few years, such as:-
(1) That a very young Leonardo da Vinci wrote it
Problem: LdV was left-handed, while the Voynich Ms was written by a right-hander. D'oh!

(2) That she has managed to decode the Voynich plants
Problem: her botany and history both seem thin (if not actually transparent). Duh!

(3) That the VMs is anagrammed, as evidenced by the unreadable marginalia on the back page
Problem: this is just optimistic rubbish, based on her reading of the third letter. Drat! See the above link as well as:-

Honestly, why does she keep posting up this stuff? And (perhaps more interestingly) why does she keep promoting it via Google Adwords? Given that she must have spent thousands of dollars by now, perhaps she's planning to write an amazing "The-Voynich-was-by-Leonardo" book? All nonsensical grist for the long-suffering Voynich mill, I'm afraid. :-(

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