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Cubic Dilemma (Posted on 2005-01-05) Difficulty: 4 of 5
Imagine a cube, 3x3x3 in size. Each of the 27 segments inside the cube contains a different character including the 26 letters and one space.

The characters are arranged in such a way that A will be next to B, which is next to C etc. They are connected side by side or top and bottom, not diagonally. The space is next to the Z; other punctuation should be ignored.

De-cipher the following code relating to the above cube:

y2b, x3a, y2a, z3c, y1b, x2b, y1b, z2a, x1a, x2c, x3a, y2c, y1b, y1a, x3b, x3a, z1a, y1b, y3b, z3b, y2b, z1c, y1b, x3b, x2b, z1a, y1b, y3b, z3b, z3c, y1b, z1a, y3b, y2b, x1a, y1a, x3a, y3b, z3b, y1b, x2c, x1a, y1a, y1b, y1a, x3b, z3c, z2a, z3c, y1b, z2b, x2b, z1c, y1b, x2c, z3c, y1b, z2b, y3b, z2a, z3c, y1b, y1a, x3b, x2b, z3b, y1b, y3b, z3b, z3c, y1b, x1c, x2b, z1c, y1b, y1a, y3b, y1b, y3c, x3a, z3b, z2c, y1b, x3a, y1a.

See The Solution Submitted by Juggler    
Rating: 3.7500 (4 votes)

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Solution solution | Comment 2 of 8 |

Were it not for the fact that the space is encoded as one of the triplets of characters, this would be easily convertible into an ordinary single substitution cypher.  As it is, there's no indication where the spaces between words occur, and unlike cyphers in which the spaces are merely expunged, they just look the same as letters.

So, I tried letting the space be represented by each of the coordinate triplets in turn (in the order of first appearance).  The other triplets were assigned to the other letters of the alphabet, sequentially, again in order of first appearance. The result was:

 ABCDEDFGHAIDJKALDMN ODKELDMNCDLM GJAMNDHGJDJKCFCDPEODHCDPMFCDJKENDMNCDQEODJMDRANSDAJ
A BCDEDFGH IDJK LDMNAODKELDMNCDLMAGJ MNDHGJDJKCFCDPEODHCDPMFCDJKENDMNCDQEODJMDR NSD J
AB CDEDFGHBIDJKBLDMNAODKELDMNCDLMAGJBMNDHGJDJKCFCDPEODHCDPMFCDJKENDMNCDQEODJMDRBNSDBJ
ABC DEDFGHBIDJKBLDMNAODKELDMN DLMAGJBMNDHGJDJK F DPEODH DPMF DJKENDMN DQEODJMDRBNSDBJ
ABCD E FGHBI JKBL MNAO KEL MND LMAGJBMN HGJ JKDFD PEO HD PMFD JKEN MND QEO JM RBNS BJ
ABCDE EFGHBIEJKBLEMNAOEK LEMNDELMAGJBMNEHGJEJKDFDEP OEHDEPMFDEJK NEMNDEQ OEJMERBNSEBJ
ABCDEFE GHBIEJKBLEMNAOEKFLEMNDELMAGJBMNEHGJEJKD DEPFOEHDEPM DEJKFNEMNDEQFOEJMERBNSEBJ
ABCDEFEG HBIEJKBLEMNAOEKFLEMNDELMA JBMNEH JEJKDGDEPFOEHDEPMGDEJKFNEMNDEQFOEJMERBNSEBJ
ABCDEFEGH BIEJKBLEMNAOEKFLEMNDELMAHJBMNE HJEJKDGDEPFOE DEPMGDEJKFNEMNDEQFOEJMERBNSEBJ
ABCDEFEGHIB EJKBLEMNAOEKFLEMNDELMAHJBMNEIHJEJKDGDEPFOEIDEPMGDEJKFNEMNDEQFOEJMERBNSEBJ
ABCDEFEGHIBJE KBLEMNAOEKFLEMNDELMAH BMNEIH E KDGDEPFOEIDEPMGDE KFNEMNDEQFOE MERBNSEB
ABCDEFEGHIBJEK BLEMNAOE FLEMNDELMAHKBMNEIHKEK DGDEPFOEIDEPMGDEK FNEMNDEQFOEKMERBNSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLB EMNAOELF EMNDE MAHKBMNEIHKEKLDGDEPFOEIDEPMGDEKLFNEMNDEQFOEKMERBNSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBME NAOELFME NDEM AHKB NEIHKEKLDGDEPFOEIDEP GDEKLFNE NDEQFOEK ERBNSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMEN AOELFMEN DEMNAHKBN EIHKEKLDGDEPFOEIDEPNGDEKLF EN DEQFOEKNERB SEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMENOA ELFMENODEMNAHKBNOEIHKEKLDGDEPF EIDEPNGDEKLFOENODEQF EKNERBOSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMENOAPELFMENODEMNAHKBNOEIHKEKLDGDE FPEIDE NGDEKLFOENODEQFPEKNERBOSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMENOAPELFMENODEMNAHKBNOEIHKEKLDGDEQFPEIDEQNGDEKLFOENODE FPEKNERBOSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMENOAPELFMENODEMNAHKBNOEIHKEKLDGDEQFPEIDEQNGDEKLFOENODERFPEKNE BOSEBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMENOAPELFMENODEMNAHKBNOEIHKEKLDGDEQFPEIDEQNGDEKLFOENODERFPEKNESBO EBK
ABCDEFEGHIBJEKLBMENOAPELFMENODEMNAHKBNOEIHKEKLDGDEQFPEIDEQNGDEKLFOENODERFPEKNESBOTEBK

Only the fifth line has reasonably sized words.  When deciphered it's something like

LIKE A RUBIX THIS ONLY HAS ONE SOLUTION BUT THERE MAY BE MORE THAN ONE WAY TO FIND IT

At this point I couldn't be sure the X was right for y2c (I in the transliterated version).  I knew it wasn't a K, as already taken by  y2a (C in the transliterated line: ABCD=LIKE).  It could be C or X.

But laying this out according to the coordinates, with the first group below representing first coordinate x; the second group, the first coordinate y; and the third group the first coordinate z.  Within each group, the first line has middle coordinate 1; the second, 2; and the third, 3.  The leftmost represents third coordinate a; the middle, b; the rightmost, c.

U.W
.AB
IH.
T .
KLX
.OF
S.Y
RMD
.NE

The position where the X is placed actually needs to be occupied by C, so the decrypted saying is

LIKE A RUBIC THIS ONLY HAS ONE SOLUTION BUT THERE MAY BE MORE THAN ONE WAY TO FIND IT


  Posted by Charlie on 2005-01-05 20:26:23
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