- Hardcover: 525 pages
- Publisher: Springer; 4th edition (November 14, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 3540245022
- ISBN-13: 978-3540245025
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,018,214 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Decrypted Secrets: Methods and Maxims of Cryptology 4th Edition
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"The best single book on cryptology today." -- Cryptologia (from a review of a previous edition)
From the reviews of the fourth edition:
"This comprehensive updated edition is divided into two sections. The first part of the book deals with The People and the second concentrates on The Machinery. … This volume includes 191 Figures, 29 Tables and 16 Color Plates, plus an Appendix. … Friedrich L. Bauer Professor Emeritus of Mathematics and Computer Science … has written an outstanding book on cryptology that belongs in your personal library or as a gift for a friend. … There are other fascinating sidelights to this excellent book." (The Cryptogram, Page 15, 2007)
"By far the best single work on the subject." -- David Kahn
“It contains a wealth of material on the history of classical cryptology, focusing especially on the first half of the 20th century. … The book is so thorough that it could serve as a textbook for those who want to develop their skills in this area. … this book is an excellent source for the history of codemaking and codebreaking in the early and mid-20th century.” (Neal Koblitz, SIAM Review, Vol. 52 (4), 2010)
Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
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I would recommend this book the mathematicians who want information about applying their mathematics to ciphers, and to experts on ciphers who want to learn more about this highly mathematical approach. I would also recommend the book to someone, like myself, who is more interested in the historical aspects of ciphers, particularly as it applies to the last 100 years. I found the book to be a good adjunct to the other that I have read on this subject, but certainly would not recommend it as a first book on the subject, or to someone with only a casual interest in it.
What is in the Book –
The book is divided into two parts – Cryptography (codes, ciphers, their classification and development), and Cryptanalysis (the techniques used decipher encrypted messages). The approach of each section is to mathematically classify the cipher in question and in the Cryptology section describe how it operates and in the Cryptanalysis part how to go about deciphering each class. The book contains numerous examples of ciphers and their solution, but in a highly mathematical framework. Unfortunately, if you are unfamiliar with the mathematics then much of this material may be quite inaccessible to you.
RESEARCHING THIS BOOK HELPED ME IN MY DISCOVERY OF THE SHROUD CODES IN THE BIBLE.
I have been involved in the study, and application, of cryptology since 1997 when I originally read this book, which helped to educate me about the secretive but fascinating world of hidden codes. This book, Decrypted Secrets: Methods and Maxims of Cryptology, greatly assisted my hunt for the Shroud Codes, which led to my book, Shroud Codes in the Bible. The lessons I learned from books on cryptology were akin to going to a school for cryptology.
Rather than being a dry recitation of encryption and cryptanalysis schemes, Bauer provides a great deal of information about what actually goes wrong when one tries to construct a cipher that must be used under pressure by non-cryptologists, with plenty of historical examples to illustrate his points. And he discusses at some length the ways in which cryptanalysts can hope to unravel ciphers and codes too strong to be broken by standard methods. Much of what he has to say I had never seen in print before; some of it was brand new to me. Perhaps it helps that Bauer is German, and doesn't have to write with the uneasy feeling that NSA or MI-6 is looking over his shoulder at every line he writes. For example, his explanation of how Robert Murphy compromised an American cipher in WW II so badly that the Germans could read it easily is one that I think some American officials would probably still prefer not to have in print.
Despite comments by other reviewers and by Cryptologia, I think it requires a certain mathematical sophistication to absorb much of the material in this book. The math is not hard, but Bauer implicitly assumes a mathematical mindset and a familiarity with the terminology of pure mathematics that most college undergraduates don't have. So I wouldn't choose it as the primary text for a first course in cryptology, but I would certainly use it as a supplementary text. I know of no other book that contains so much material on the practical realities of cryptology.