Public: Communication
Citation code   (0)  [vote for, against]
Not unbreakable encryption

A message is encoded by breaking it down into a sequence of words. Each word is replaced by a citation to some kind of published work, giving a full reference and page number (the word to be encrypted being the first word on the referenced page).

The message is transmitted as a sequence of citations. It is decoded simply by looking up the references provided, which will give the sequence of words of the original message.

Decrypting the message is not difficult, and in theory anyone can do it, but it will require access to a good library.
-- pocmloc, Oct 28 2019

One Time Pad https://en.wikipedi...g/wiki/One-time_pad
...unbreakable [Frankx, Oct 31 2019]

This isn't a cipher, it's a code. Ciphers are generated by an algorithm; codes are a look-up table.
-- 8th of 7, Oct 28 2019

This idea seems to combine all the advantages of being cumbersome and tedious with the clear benefits of being insecure.
-- MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 28 2019

//access to a good library//
Sp: "the internet".
Cumbersome and tedious (to borrow from [MaxwellBuchanan]) would have worked well, before computers came along, but these days not so much.
-- neutrinos_shadow, Oct 28 2019

//This isn't a cipher, it's a code//

Thank you

//the internet//

I have plenty of books in my house, and many more in the libraries within half an hours walk of here, which have not been digitised and are not available online. So I think it should be fairly easy for me to make an encoded message that requires library access and not just internet access.
-- pocmloc, Oct 29 2019

But then you require the other person to have access to a library that has not only the same books, but the same editions of those books.
-- MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 29 2019

What if you only have the Bible, Shakespeare, and 10 vinyl records ?
-- 8th of 7, Oct 29 2019

You can cite a vinyl record sleeve.

€5 in the post to the first person to decode this message:

Morgan, P. Oxford libraries outside the Bodleian. Oxford: Oxford Bibliographical Society, 1974, p.89
Buchan, J. The thirty-nine steps. London: Longman, Green & co. (the Heritage of Literature series), 1947, p.105
Abbadie et al, Museum Manifesto: What future without nature? Paris: Editions Museum National d'Histoire Natruelle, 2017, p.76
Montaigne, Essays (trans. J. Florio, intro C Whibley). London: Blackie & son Ltd., no date, p.245
Lyons, L. A practical guide to data analysis for physical science students. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991, p.88
Mrs Beeton's Cookery and Household Management. London: Ward Lock Ltd, 1960, p.379
-- pocmloc, Oct 29 2019

I fear this is not a very practical idea.
-- pocmloc, Oct 29 2019

Wikipedia lists Turkey as sharing nuclear weapons provided by the U.S. This is an intensely bad idea. These nuclear weapons are allegedly kept secure remotely by a "Permissive Action Link (PAL)" which is "almost impossible to bypass"

Really, has anyone created encryption which can't be broken, given enough time?

Those weapons should not be in Turkey. They should not be in Germany.
-- 4and20, Oct 29 2019

No, they should be dropping out of the sky further to the south-east at this very moment ...
-- 8th of 7, Oct 29 2019

It's an interesting question: would Turkey or any other country really nuke their own border?
-- 4and20, Oct 29 2019

Yes, if the wind's blowing in the right direction. A low yield airburst will do a lot of damage but dump relatively little contamination in the immediate area. The USSR proved out the use of tac-nukes this way in the 1960's and it was part of NATO's strategic posture during the Cold War if the Ivans ever trundled into Germany ....
-- 8th of 7, Oct 29 2019

//can't be broken, given enough time//

I believe a "one-time pad" is considered unbreakable, but has practical limitations. [link]
-- Frankx, Oct 31 2019

So you are suggesting that every book, once cited, has to be burned?
-- pocmloc, Oct 31 2019

Start with the Barbara Cartlands then, plenty to go at ... then the Mills & Boon ...
-- 8th of 7, Oct 31 2019

There's still a €5 reward sitting here for a correct decryption

After Brexit it will be replaced with £5
-- pocmloc, Oct 31 2019

In that case, patience seems the best policy, as £5 is already worth more than €5, and will be worth even more after Brexit.
-- 8th of 7, Oct 31 2019

random, halfbakery