puzzle posted by the FBI recently. It is a challenge to decipher some code. The code is a bunch of symbols. Heopfully each symbol is just a reference to a certain letter or character. The FBI was nice enough to show us where the spaces are in the words.
My interest is to see if I could maybe write a program to do the cracking for me. The symbols look like they each have nine positions. Those positions are sometimes occupied by a circle. When the circle is present, it is filled in with one of a few different colors.
Well I could scan in the picture with my software. Divide up the words by the spaces between them. Then identify where the circles are and what colors they contain. I could definitely represent this as something better that symbology with circles. In fact, assuming this is a simple substitution cipher, I would just want to represent each distinct symbol with a number.
Then I could perhaps do some sort of brute force deciphering. The software should know which letters occur most frequently in normal text. Then it could choose a mapping based on how often the letters show up in the encoded message. Then it could take each word using the current mapping, and see whether the words are in a dictionary.
The software, if fast enough, could iterate through all possible combinations of mappings. Then it could generate a score for each mapping based on how many words are spelled correctly accoring to a dictionary. The software would then present the translation for the highest scoring mappings to the user, who could make the final determination as to what makes sense.
Getting Access to the Code - Right now I am working on a tiger team to research why this new reporting system has different data than the old one. Most of the time I try to figure out...