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Where to 'S'tart (Posted on 2004-11-30) Difficulty: 4 of 5

1st pass encryption - MIF.CLGMFELCMLM.
2nd pass encryption - VO.IOSTSKQOPYY.
3rd pass encryption - K.XXHMMDBFEOX.

1. What answer would Zero pass encryption reveal, given that the encryption method does not change.
2. How much more difficult is it to get to zero level encryption if you don't have the level 1 values, only level 2?

See The Solution Submitted by Juggler    
Rating: 2.1667 (6 votes)

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Solution Solution to part 2 - partial spoiler | Comment 4 of 7 |

Any message that is encrypted using this technique will have only one valid encryption code, but that encryption will have 26 ways of being created.

If the 1st pass encryption had not been provided, then there would have been 26*26=676 possible messeges which would have resulted in that particular encryption.

Here's a possible variation on this puzzle:  Since this encryption technique loses one character with each pass, what would the final letter be for a given message if it's been run through the algorithm n-1 times if n is the number of characters in the original message?  Also, if we are given the single letter and the number of times it's been processed, could you come back to a single message which makes sense?  I think a computer program could be written to solve the original message, but for a message that's only 15 characters long (as this one is) there would be 6.451x10^19 possible solutions.

  Posted by Erik O. on 2004-11-30 22:08:33
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