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Ed
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Alice & Bob

Permalink 02/02/07 at 03:18:49 pm, by Ed, 170 words   English (US)
Categories: General

The convention surrounding cryptanalysis is that person A (Alice) wants to send person B (Bob) a message, without person C (Charlie) finding out what the message is.

For several years before I learned this naming scheme, I had resolved to not learn peoples' names since it's not information I need to know, instead just calling them Alice and Bob. Now, it's obvious why cryptanalysts chose Alice and Bob: They correspond to A and B, the first two letters of the English alphabet. I had no such reason behind my choosing. I just picked two names randomly, and they happened to be the same two names. Even if I were picking for A and B, I could have chosen Allison, Amy, Andrea, or any other plethora of A names, and for B I could have chosen Ben, Bill, Blake, but no, I chose Bob and Alice. Does this mean I was destined to be a cryptanalyst? Or just that I can read people's minds by accident?

I vote the second one.

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