SubCracker


SubCracker is a utility/toy for cracking simple substitution ciphers over the 26-letter English alphabet. It includes a somewhat crude interface with which the user can interactively crack the cipher. More interestingly, it also has a probabilistic model over English words and a stochastic optimization routine that allows it to help with the cracking procedure, and often completely cracks the cipher autonomously in a short amount of time.

It requires:

  • Either a version of Sun's Java Plug-in or a browser/applet-viewer that supports Java 1.3.
  • A computer that doesn't suck. (A Pentium with a couple hundred megahertz will probably do.)
  • At least 64 MB of RAM. (I'm not sure how well it'll run if you only have 64 MB, but it might work. 128 MB makes everything hunky-dory.)
Click here for the version that requires a naturally Java 1.3-happy applet-viewer / browser.

Or, click here for the version that requires the Java Plug-in for Internet Explorer or Netscape.

A screenshot of a successful autonomous crack. (The extra-special bonus Bogoword Generator is also shown bottom right.)

SubCracker can generate semi-amusing puzzles for the user or itself to solve by grabbing sayings from the Cube and then scrambling them. Note that:

  • Some of these sayings may be too short to be unscrambled unambigiously, in which case you should just try another one.
  • Some of these sayings are almost complete gibberish even when unscrambled, which makes unscrambling them hard, if not downright impossible. And of course you may not be able to tell that from the scrambled text. Bwah hah hah hah hah.
  • Some of these sayings are not for the squeamish.
You've been warned.

SubCracker is still in its infancy and is thus currently undocumented. Consider the question "How am I supposed to use this damn thing?" as a puzzle in its own right.


Here's a link to Scott Davies's home page.