Article | Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Historical Cryptology HistoCrypt 2020 | The Role of Base 10 in the Beale Papers Linköping University Electronic Press Conference Proceedings
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Title:
The Role of Base 10 in the Beale Papers
Author:
Viktor Wase: Stockholm, Sweden
DOI:
https://doi.org/10.3384/ecp2020171019
Download:
Full text (pdf)
Year:
2020
Conference:
Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Historical Cryptology HistoCrypt 2020
Issue:
171
Article no.:
019
Pages:
153-157
No. of pages:
5
Publication type:
Abstract and Fulltext
Published:
2020-05-19
ISBN:
978-91-7929-827-2
Series:
Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings
ISSN (print):
1650-3686
ISSN (online):
1650-3740
Publisher:
Linköping University Electronic Press, Linköpings universitet


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The Beale Papers is an 1885 pamphlet claiming to contain the location of a huge hidden treasure. The only snag is that the message is encrypted and, as of writing this, unsolved. This study investigates the authenticity of the ciphers by comparing the distribution of the numbers in the ciphers to each other, in different bases. Humans are generally illsuited to the task of generating random numbers. As such, one might suspect that the behaviour of the distributions in base 10 would be widely different from the other bases if the ciphers were faked. The results of this study strongly indicate that this is the case.

Keywords: Historical Ciphers; Beale Papers; Benford’s Law

Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Historical Cryptology HistoCrypt 2020

Author:
Viktor Wase
Title:
The Role of Base 10 in the Beale Papers
DOI:
10.3384/ecp2020171019
References:
No references available

Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Historical Cryptology HistoCrypt 2020

Author:
Viktor Wase
Title:
The Role of Base 10 in the Beale Papers
DOI:
https://doi.org10.3384/ecp2020171019
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Last updated: 2019-11-06