I’ve finally made some more updates to the Zodiac webtoy! The biggest change is the addition of simple letter-frequency statistics.
Remember when Ralphie cracked the “secret code” in A Christmas Story? Ralphie: [Reading his decoding]: “Be… sure… to… drink… your… Ovaltine. Ovaltine? A crummy commercial?!? Son of a bitch!!”
Here is the list of noteworthy changes:
Added frequency tabulations for symbols, decoded plaintext letters, and expected letter frequencies (as specified here). Frequency analysis of this sort might be useful to cracking the cipher. Eventually, I would like to include more n-gram statistics (occurrences of letter combinations of length n) to make this more useful.
Added the 408 cipher, which has a known (and creepy) solution. Click on the “Switch to 408 cipher” link to see it. The known solution link is below the 408 cipher (it is labeled “The correct one” next to “Interesting decoders”).
Fixed some formatting bugs that were causing the columns of the cipher grid to get squashed.
Computer Randomly Plays Classical Music
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Article ID : 261186
Last Review : March 27, 2007
Revision : 3.3
This article was previously published under Q261186
During normal operation or in Safe mode, your computer may play “Fur Elise” or “It’s a Small, Small World” seemingly at random. This is an indication sent to the PC speaker from the computer’s BIOS that the CPU fan is failing or has failed, or that the power supply voltages have drifted out of tolerance. This is a design feature of a detection circuit and system BIOSes developed by Award/Unicore from 1997 on.
Anyone remember the famous scene in 2001 when HAL the computer gets shut down?
HAL: I’m afraid. I’m afraid, Dave. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I’m a… fraid. Good afternoon, gentlemen. I am a HAL 9000 computer. I became operational at the H.A.L. plant in Urbana, Illinois on the 12th of January 1992. My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you’d like to hear it I can sing it for you.
Dave Bowman: Yes, I’d like to hear it, HAL. Sing it for me.
HAL: It’s called “Daisy.”
[sings while slowing down]
HAL: Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do. I’m half crazy all for the love of you. It won’t be a stylish marriage, I can’t afford a carriage. But you’ll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two.