Cryptorunes: Codes and Secret Writing

Overview

It's one thing to substitute one Roman character for another, as in the usual cryptogram. But when the new characters take the form of ancient runes, animals, aliens' heads, buildings, and elegant squiggles that could have originated with the inhabitants of Alpha Centauri, both the difficulty and the delight increase by several large jumps.

Clifford Pickover's Cryptorunes derive their content from a wildly diverse assortment of sources -- Goethe, Ibsen, John Fowles, Julian of ...

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It's one thing to substitute one Roman character for another, as the usual cryptogram. But when the new characters take the format of ancient runes, animals, aliens' heads, ... buildings, and elegant squiggles that could have orginated with the inhabitants of Alpha Centauri, both the difficulty and the delight increase by several large jumps. This is a collection of puzzles as beautiful to behold as they are difficult (but rewarding) to solve. But there's more: An excellent brief history of runic alphabets and their sources, and overview of the science of cryptology and more. Read more Show Less

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Overview

It's one thing to substitute one Roman character for another, as in the usual cryptogram. But when the new characters take the form of ancient runes, animals, aliens' heads, buildings, and elegant squiggles that could have originated with the inhabitants of Alpha Centauri, both the difficulty and the delight increase by several large jumps.

Clifford Pickover's Cryptorunes derive their content from a wildly diverse assortment of sources -- Goethe, Ibsen, John Fowles, Julian of Norwich, Bertrand Russell, Jules Verne, and Dale Carnegie, to name just a few -- for quotations and aphorisms that range from the absurd to the eerie. Pickover has not contented himself with rendering these words into ordinary cryptograms; instead, they appear in a wide range of runic alphabets. Some of these are traditional Norse runes; others are brand-new and unique, created for this book by extraordinary calligraphers and typographers.

The result is a collection of puzzles as beautiful to behold as they are difficult (but rewarding!) to solve. But there's much more to this strange and wonderful book: an excellent brief history of runic alphabets and their sources, an overview of the science of cryptology, general rules for creating and solving all kinds of codes, an insightful hypothesis concerning extraterrestrial codes, and a contest for readers. The first five people to decode a set of clues to the earthly locations of some (fictional) golden runes will win a magnificent set of handmade rune stones.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764912511
  • Publisher: Pomegranate Communications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/1/2003
  • Pages: 104
  • Product dimensions: 8.13 (w) x 10.11 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Chapter 1 Cryptography 6
Chapter 2 How to Crack Cryptorunes 18
Chapter 3 Secret Codes from the Stars 22
Chapter 4 The Cryptorunes 31
Chapter 5 The Golden Rune Contest 82
Chapter 6 Clues 91
Chapter 7 Solutions 92
About the Author 98
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