I am not making assumptions. But in order to know whether I can decode this string I kind of have to know whether I have the right string in the first place (or whether it doesn't matter, modulo a monoalphabetic substitution). I have a dozen cryptanalysis tools open and none of them is giving me anything. Distribution analysis suggests that the string is not "nonsense" per se, but so far I cannot translate it into English.
Edit: Right, I see what I was doing wrong. Because of the layout of the plaintext the result is not exactly English. But I had to select the right alphabet to output. There is no J in the plaintext.
I'm still stuck on how to get from 315 letters in B to 100 letters...
Do I need decoded A to decode B? Or is this another rabbit hole?
Decoded A gives no more information than the wikipedia article does AFAIK.
I guess I`ll have to work on B with different catalyst?
I feel epic stupid right now. I did chemistry in high school. I passed chemistry in university. Then I failed chemistry when I moved to a "better" university.
I have C. I cannot for the life of me figure out A and I'm still stuck at the same point I was at 9 hours ago. gahhh...
I have 8 letters. and I still have 315 letters.
I've decoded "A" hours ago...is "B" at least the same cipher?
Yes you do.
It's very closely related. If you get something with lots of Qs and Ts in it you are nearly there but need to adjust the parameters or look at links to similar ciphers.
You likely know too much chemistry. Stop chasing C completely.
@starwort Your method still sounds unorthodox, but sounds like you got past that stage. I'd love to chat to you for my upcoming blog posts about this series, what's the best method to contact you?
really a unique way to get keywords...
Thanks for the Challenge dan all hint..
Any help for someone who have late start? 😅
I figure out that C contains some chemical molecule.. But can't figure out what to do with it or with A & B
I guess on Telegram (same name).
C is a "catalyst" and that's enough chemistry knowledge you need to know about C.. Think about the definition about catalyst: what role does a catalyst play in a chemical reaction? and what role does a "catalyst" play in a decipher?
This is a really wonderful challenge. There are several steps, but you can easily figure out whether you are on the right track.
i must have tried most of the words around that time code that i think it meant but now i'm faced with "Passcode circuitry too hot." there has to be an easier way than trying every word...
From "B" I got a string with 315 chars containing 5 symbols of chemical elements. When each replaced by a number it makes string with 200 numbers. My next guess is that I split that by 2 numbers and that somehow codes ascii?
there is another obscure cipher that hasn't been used in other challenges that is needed for that step
So I fell asleep last night with 5 distinct symbols, some 200 of them, followed by what seems to be a 6th "termination" character. It looks like Huffman, smells like Huffman, but after putting in the probabilities, the binary output is consistently unintelligible. Mind you three of the symbols have "nearly" equal probabilities, the other two have also nearly equal, so that's 24 things to try all around.
I don't WANT to jump down that rabbit hole, and yes my least favourite part of these challenges is the plethora of potential rabbit holes that go nowhere.
first i think that means "A is the reactant and we need to add C multiple times to get the product"(or something like that.. honestly, my chemistry knowledge is really basic) . So maybe it means that "A need to be decoded multiple times using C as the key". I tried vigenere, but there's someone here saying that the decoding method is never been used in this challenge. Well, vigenere has been used at least twice (from what I remember). So it means that the decoding method is something else, but I can't think any other method that use key other than vigenere... or I need some kind of way to do A + C... nothing comes in mind right now
For "B" I have a string of 8 letters that's 315 characters long starting with "KhhrbN..." am I on the right track here?
Not Huffman. Also your 350 ciphertext letters should give 200 symbols; I believe it's been stated earlier here that the post-colon letters are herrings.
Re: post-colon, that is Useful Information I guess
So 200 "symbols" I've got, with an unknown unspecified previously unused cipher/encoding that (probably) somehow combines each consecutive pair of symbols into 100 characters, probably alpha or alphanumeric. There's a few obscure things, but I wouldn't knock it considering there's 5-factorial = 120 ways of ordering five otherwise-unordered symbols.
Most of the time, the “keyword” has been a single word (or just a last name), sometimes it has been a two word firstnamelastname. This time, think single phrase.
I'm stumped on the keyword, too. I've got everything else out, after a few wrong turnings and hints, and the steps all makes some kind of sense.
But this keyword: I've got the 24 letters, I recognize the format and have looked up the flipping obscure reference, but I can't see (or hear) how to get a word/phrase from it. I've resorted to guessing at the password box, still no luck. Is it something obvious that I've mistyped?
I'm right on the cusp of this. Anyone got a passcode format, i.e. length of the prefix and suffix?
ETA: nvm. I made a silly error. Once I corrected it the solution was much clearer.
I'm on this step for 4 hours now...still nothing useful...
With a tweak in the process, the 8-characters-that-became-5 turned into a different 8-characters-that-became-5 that make more sense with the puzzle's theme. So that gave a particular order of the 5 symbols, leaving me currently with ... 100 2-digit numbers, 22 distinct ones in the set.
Somehow now those paired digits turn into 100 alpha/alphanumeric characters?