A NEW CLUE TO SOLVE THE CIA’S MYSTERIOUS KRYPTOS SCULPTURE

https://www.wired.com/2014/11/second-kryptos-clue/

IN 1989, THE year the Berlin Wall began to fall, American artist Jim Sanborn was busy working on his Kryptos sculpture, a cryptographic puzzle wrapped in a riddle that he created for the CIA’s headquarters and that has been driving amateur and professional cryptographers mad ever since.

To honor the 25th anniversary of the Wall’s demise and the artist’s 69th birthday this year, Sanborn has decided to reveal a new clue to help solve his iconic and enigmatic artwork. It’s only the second hint he’s released since the sculpture was unveiled in 1990 and may finally help unlock the fourth and final section of the encrypted sculpture, which frustrated sleuths have been struggling to crack for more than two decades.

The 12-foot-high, verdigrised copper, granite and wood sculpture on the grounds of the CIA complex in Langley, Virginia, contains four encrypted messages carved out of the metal, three of which were solved years ago. The fourth is composed of just 97 letters, but its brevity belies its strength. Even the NSA, whose master crackers were the first to decipher other parts of the work, gave up on cracking it long ago. So four years ago, concerned that he might not live to see the mystery of Kryptos resolved, Sanborn released a clue to help things along, revealing that six of the last 97 letters when decrypted spell the word “Berlin”—a revelation that many took to be a reference to the Berlin Wall.

To that clue today, he’s adding the next word in the sequence—”clock”—that may or may not throw a wrench in this theory.Now the Kryptos sleuths just have to unscramble the remaining 86 characters to find out.

Sanborn told WIRED that he’s always been fascinated by Berlin’s many clocks but the Berlin Clock in particular has intrigued him the most. The clock, also known as the Berlin Uhr or Set Theory Clock, was designed in the 1970s by inventor and tinkerer Dieter Binninger. It displays the time through illuminated colored blocks rather than numbers and requires the viewer to calculate the time based on a complex scheme.

A yellow lamp at the top of the clock blinks every two seconds while a row of red lamps beneath it represent five hours. Red lights on a second row denote one hour each, and time is calculated based on the number of lights illuminated. “So if in the first line 2 lamps are lit and in the second line 3 lamps, it’s 5+5+3=13h or 1 p.m.,” notes one description of the timepiece.

“Most people have no idea who Dieter is and all of the other people who make strange clocks in Berlin,” Sanborn says. “There’s a very interesting back story to [the Berlin Clock].”

The focus on the clock, however, may just be a bit of sly misdirection from Sanborn—who is known among Kryptos fans for his puckishness.

“Clock” could easily refer instead to a method devised by a Polish mathematician and cryptologist during World War II to crack Germany’s Enigma ciphers—a method that was expanded on by Alan Turing and his team at Bletchley Park who are credited with ultimately cracking Enigma. (It may be no coincidence that Sanborn has decided to release his new clue at the same time as The Imitation Game, a film about Turing’s work on Enigma, is opening in US theaters on Nov. 28.)

The artwork features a large block of petrified wood standing upright, with a tall copper plate scrolling out from the wood like a sheet of paper. At the sculpture’s base is a round pool with a fountain pump that sends water moving in a circular direction around the pool. Carved out of the copper plate are approximately 1,800 letters, some of them forming a cryptographic table based on a method developed by a 16th-century Frenchman named Blaise de Vigenere.

In 1995 a small group of cryptanalysts inside the NSA quietly deciphered the first three sections of the sculpture, though no one outside the agency and the CIA’s top brass knew about it. In 1998, CIA analyst David Stein cracked the same three messages using paper and pencil and about 400 lunch-time hours. Only his CIA colleagues knew of his success, however, because the agency didn’t publicize it. A year later, California computer scientist Jim Gillogly gained public notoriety when he cracked the same three messages using a Pentium II.

The first message is a poetic phrase that Sanborn composed:

“Between subtle shading and the absence of light lies the nuance of iqlusion.”

———-

thanks to maria for the link..

news to me..what is this?

“a cryptographic puzzle wrapped in a riddle that he created for the CIA’s headquarters and that has been driving amateur and professional cryptographers mad ever since.”

and why?

“The 12-foot-high, verdigrised copper, granite and wood sculpture on the grounds of the CIA complex in Langley, Virginia, contains four encrypted messages carved out of the metal, three of which were solved years ago. The fourth is composed of just 97 letters, but its brevity belies its strength. Even the NSA, whose master crackers were the first to decipher other parts of the work, gave up on cracking it long ago.”

401

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~ by seeker401 on December 12, 2017.

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