Martin Postranecky | 29 Nov 00:50 2015

OBITUARY : Professor S Barry Cooper

Tuesday November 24 2015

OBITUARY : Professor S Barry Cooper

Mathematician who championed the cause of Alan Turing, the disgraced 
wartime codebreaker who has since been acclaimed as a hero

Without the tireless efforts of the mathematician S Barry Cooper, the 
story of Alan Turing, the brilliant but ill-starred computer pioneer and 
wartime codebreaker, might never have re-emerged, enabling him to be 
recognised globally as a British hero.....

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Martin Postranecky | 19 Nov 23:38 2015

OBITUARY : Douglas Nicoll - Wartime codebreaker who took Britain’s spymasters

The Times 
Thursday 19 November 2015

OBITUARY : Douglas Nicoll

- British soldiers lying prostrate after surrendering to Argentine forces
  in the Falklands in 1982. Nicholl later pinpointed the reasons why the
  invasion took the intelligence services by surprise

Wartime codebreaker who took Britain’s spymasters to task in the weeks 
before the Falklands conflict.

Douglas Nicoll was an intelligence officer who highlighted the 
shortcomings of Britain’s spymasters in the 1980s, particularly in the 
months before the Falklands conflict. Some of his work is still 

He was the author of a secret report in 1982 that demonstrated how 
aggression by foreign powers often took the intelligence services by 
surprise; the report was presented — but not acted upon — 29 days before 
Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands and deepened the government’s sense 
of embarrassment as the British task force set out for the South Atlantic. 
Nicoll, who was a codebreaker at Bletchley Park during the Second World 

Nicoll, who was a codebreaker at Bletchley Park during the Second World 

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Martin Postranecky | 28 Oct 10:11 2015

For your eyes only : The Times goes inside GCHQ


The Times 
Wednesday October 28 2015

For your eyes only : The Times goes inside GCHQ

Ben Macintyre

Britain’s most secretive organisation, the eavesdropping headquarters of 
GCHQ, has given unprecedented access to The Times as parliament prepares 
to debate groundbreaking legislation to set out the future of spying in 
the digital age.

The newspaper was allowed inside the agency’s HQ in Cheltenham and its 
top-secret London offices to see the scale of the intelligence-gathering 
operation. I was furthermore shown “the Cage”, which houses the machine 
that generates government encryption codes and is the most secret part of 
the country’s £2 billion espionage machinery...../snip/

- Going into The Cage

- Post-Snowden rebuilding

- From Bletchley to today
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Michael Bilow | 5 Oct 01:57 2015

Mechanical Bombe simulator and Enigma wrist watch

Simon Jensen (asciimation) in New Zealand shows off his completed
mechanical Bombe simulator made with a Raspberry Pi and stepper motors,
including a 20-minute video:

(Direct link to video: )

He previously built a three-rotor Enigma machine wrist watch with an
Arduino, and a 12-minute video:

(Direct link to video: )

-- Mike

Martin Postranecky | 8 Aug 00:29 2015

Son makes war-hero dad a wheelchair built like a tank (fwd)

05 Aug 2015

Son makes war-hero dad a wheelchair built like a tank

A devoted son has built his 96-year-old war-veteran father a unique 
all-terrain motorised wheelchair which resembles an armoured tank

By Telegraph Men, video source SWNS

A frequent complaint of wheelchair users is the difficulty in tackling 
uneven or unstable terrain, which means a trip to the beach is often out 
of the question.

But not for widower Edde Shaw, a 96-year-old veteran of the Second World 
War and Korean War, whose son Peter, a semi-retired plumber from 
Ellesmere, Shropshire, has built him a specially adapted all-terrain 
wheelchair which resembles an armoured tank, complete with caterpillar 

....As a fluent German speaker, he was recruited by British intelligence 
service in 1943 to work on decoding secret Nazi communications.

While working in Algeria, he helped decrypt an intercepted message which 
led to the discovery of a U-Boat containing a crucial piece of Enigma 
machinery - used to send highly classified orders from the German high 

Between 1950 and 1953 Korean-speaking Eddie was hired by British 
intelligence again to interrogate prisoners of war.....
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Martin Postranecky | 7 Aug 20:20 2015

Can you solve the code in the sword ? British Library appeals for help

07 August 2015

Can you solve the code in the sword ? British Library appeals for help in 
cracking enigmatic 'NDXOXCHWDRGHDXORVI' inscription on mysterious medieval 

- A 13th century sword, found in 1825, has a cryptic 18-letter message 
  on it
- NDXOXCHWDRGHDXORVI is engraved down the weapon's central groove
- It is on display at the British Library as part of the Magna Carta 

By Sarah Griffiths and Sam Tonkin For Mailonline

A medieval sword that carries a mysterious inscription has baffled 
historians for centuries.

Little is known about double-edged weapon, least of all the meaning behind 
a cryptic 18-letter message running down the central groove which reads: 

Now The British Library have appealed for the public’s help in cracking 
the conundrum..../snip/

Read more :

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Martin Postranecky | 3 Aug 15:16 2015

'Decoding the war' : Letters to The Telegraph, 'Y' service

Letters to The Telegraph
16 Nov 2014

Decoding the war

SIR – The story of Alan Turing and his team at Bletchley Park is very 
interesting, but it is only part of the story.

The origins of decoding can be found in the First World War, when wireless 
was in its infancy. Mata Hari, the Belgian courtesan and dancer, was 
caught by a wireless operator passing vital information to the Germans. 
She was tried and shot. Winston Churchill heard about the incident and 
encouraged the Armed Forces to set up wireless intercepting units.

My father was a railway telegraphist and a 1914 volunteer to the Army. The 
First World War ended and he came home safely. In 1938 he responded to the 
government’s appeal for civilian wireless enthusiasts. He was interviewed, 
signed the Official Secrets Act, and was accepted, becoming one of 1,600 
top-secret civilian “Y” outworkers around the British Isles. Bletchley 
Park became top secret station “X”.

As a family we knew nothing of this. I remember hearing the Morse code 
sounds, wireless whistles and shushings coming from under the stairs and 
thinking it was Dad’s hobby.

M I Osbourne
Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire
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Martin Postranecky | 30 Jul 21:59 2015

The First Bletchley Park : New exhibition reveals the secrets of Room 40

30 July 2015

The First Bletchley Park : New exhibition reveals the secrets of Room 40 
where codebreakers became the hidden heroes who won World War One

- Room 40, the Government's top secret listening post, paved the way for 
  the Government Code and Cypher School
- That school was based at Bletchley Park, where codebreaker Alan Turing  
  was based during World War Two
- Admiralty intelligence department decoded Zimmerman telegram, which 
  proved German's hostility to the US
- Exhibition marks role Room 40 - where legendary codebreaker Dilly Knox 
  worked - had in ending World War One

By Steph Cockroft for MailOnline

The fascinating work executed by genius codebreakers at Bletchley Park 
during World War Two is now the stuff of legend, thanks in no small part 
to Benedict Cumberbatch's performance in the award-winning Imitation Game.

But perhaps the most crucial - and relatively untold - story in Britain's 
codebreaking history is that of Room 40, an organisation which intercepted 
and deciphered a series of German messages during World War One which 
dramatically changed the course of the bloody conflict.

The organisation, the Government's top secret listening post, carried out 
decoding work which paved the way for the the now-famous Bletchley Park, 
where crucial intelligence exploits was carried out behind closed doors to 
defeat the Nazis.

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Martin Postranecky | 18 Jul 19:36 2015

OBITUARY : Ruth Sebag-Montefiore

The Times 
Saturday July 18 2015

OBITUARY : Ruth Sebag-Montefiore

- Sebag-Montefiore worked as a coder at Bletchley Park during the war

Matriarch of the prominent Anglo-Jewish family who wrote a revealing
memoir about the vanished age of her childhood

“Always damp your forehead with sea water before bathing,” the young Ruth
Magnus was advised soon after the First World War. Other pearls of wisdom
she recalled included “never eat lettuce in France” and “never pick
blackberries low down” — this last drummed into her by the nurserymaid, a
farmer’s daughter from Kent.

In time, she became the matriarch of one of the leading Anglo-Jewish  
families, the Sebag-Montefiores, and, through her published memoir and
lectures, a repository of knowledge both about her forebears and the
nowvanished age of her childhood....


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Dick Schlaff | 17 Jul 02:52 2015

What Turing Himself Said About the Imitation Game - IEEE Spectrum

Sent from my iPad

Ronald E Wyllys | 15 Jul 03:48 2015

Change of email address

Please change my email address on your records FROM




The reason for this request is that wyllys@... is no
longer a convenient email address for me to use.

Thank you.

Ronald E. Wyllys