What is Cryptogrammer?

Cryptogrammer is a program that generates cryptograms, similar to the "Celebrity Cipher" columns in most newspapers. Basically, a cryptogram is a letter-for-letter transposition cipher, where each letter is equivalent to another letter, and the equivalency is the same throughout - however, it is randomly letter-for-letter, not an alphabetic shift like the classic Caesar's Code. Even so, it can be solved given time, logic, a letter-frequency table, and an understanding of English grammar. For some people, deciphering famous quotes is equivalent to doing a crossword puzzle.

What are the two programs?

Cryptogrammer is a cryptogram-generator equivalent to the standard generation method - that is, the letters are transposed, but the punctuation stays the same as in the original plaintext. Super Cryptogrammer takes the challenge a step further - it transposes the standard punctuation as well.

How do I use the programs?

When you start the program, you may get a dialog box stating that one or more alphabet-equivalency errors have occurred. What this means is that when the program calculated the random transpositions, one or more letters were set equivalent to themselves. While this is technically valid, it can make for a confusing cryptogram, so you can choose whether to use the transposition or not.

Next, it will ask you for text file, clipboard, or user input. Remember that all alphabetic input must be in all-caps, or it will not be transposed properly. When using Super Cryptogrammer, only use the allowed punctuation. After entering this, you will be prompted to name the resulting text file, which will appear on the desktop.

The text file contains two things. The first is the encrypted message, or ciphertext. Below that, all of the letter equivalencies are listed, if you want to include one as a hint to go along with your cryptogram.

What can I do with a cryptogram?

Puzzle your friends! Amaze your relatives! Mesmerize the family pet with little pieces of paper! Stick it in one of those annoying little blank spaces on your newspaper layout! The possibilities are endless.

Version Info

v1.0 - first release.


©2000 David Kibrick.

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