06 January, 2006

Marian Rejewski on Wikipedia

The Wikipedia article on Polish mathematician Marian Rejewski is currently going through the process to become a so-called "Featured Article", vetted entries that are eventually promoted on the main page and elsewhere.

Feel free to read the article and add any comments. The page for the Featuring process can be found here.

Despite having something of a girl's name, Rejewski was a veritable geek hero, solving the wiring of the German Enigma machine using some funky maths. It's more than possible that, without Rejewski's results, the British at Bletchley Park would have had little, if any, success with Enigma.

Rejewski also had a more exciting wartime experience than his counterparts at Bletchley Park, who were all off playing rounders in relative safety. From September 1940, Rejewski worked with a small unit on breaking Nazi ciphers from within occupied (well, Vichy) France, under the continual threat of discovery and arrest. After being nearly discovered by a detector van equipped with a radio antenna, the unit was evacuated. Aided by the French resistance, Rejewski worked his way to the border and attempted to cross over into Spain. He didn't have much luck at this point: robbed by his guide at gunpoint, captured by Spanish police only hours after crossing the border, and then interred for three months in prison.

After his release, he made his way to Britain. You might assume he would join the codebreakers at Bletchley Park on Enigma, since their work had built on his. Instead, he was assigned to a unit working on low-level codes; a decision that one former British codebreaker described as "like using racehorses to pull wagons". It's difficult to tell what motivated this apparent injustice -- perhaps a need for security, particularly since the British had developed more advanced techniques than those of Rejewski, and the future of Poland itself was uncertain. It's also possible that the relevant authorities did not know of the Polish contribution to the British work. Most of the few that had known were no longer immediately involved with Bletchley Park.

Regardless, Rejewski deserves to be remembered as one of the "greats" in crypto history.


Blogger Dirk Rijmenants said...

I believe one of his greatest efforts was to accept not beeing employed in BP, and keeping the silence for such long time after the war. He never got the deserved aknowledgment for his remarkable work, btw just as many BP veterans didn' get it :-(

8:27 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'Marian' is a men's name in Polish.

Anyway, I'm happy that some Brits are starting to recognise that it was the Poles who cracked the enigma! A few years ago there was a film made on how the Brits cracked it and it caused quite a bit of anger among our community. Many in my school still deny it was the Poles.

7:35 pm  
Blogger Matt Crypto said...


> 'Marian' is a men's name in
> Polish.

Yeah, I know ;-) I was just having a little Anglocentric fun, please forgive me.

The film you're referring to was Enigma, and I remember much of the anger was that the Polish character turned out to be a traitor, even though in reality Bletchley Park owed a great deal to the Polish pioneers.

I believe it's accurate to say that the British "cracked" Enigma, as did the Poles; but the Poles did it first, of course, and gave their work to the British. But the truth is Enigma wasn't something you could crack once like an egg, and then it was solved forever: you had to crack it each day, for each different communications network. What's more, the Germans continually improved the security of their machine, so new techniques had to be brought in to keep up with the changes. Personally, I think there's enough credit to go around.

Happily, a lot more of the recent publications in the UK give at least a nod to the Polish work when the subject of Enigma comes up. Sorry to hear about the ignorance at your school, though.

9:11 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes Its All Good But How Was It Cracked?
Please Reply Quick Homework XD

in for the 28th january 2009

7:19 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

pdktv [url=http://drdrebeatsuksales.co.uk]dr dre beats[/url] xzqaq http://drdrebeatsuksales.co.uk wzbjv [url=http://beatsbydreukforsales.co.uk]cheap beats by dre[/url] pcwvo http://beatsbydreukforsales.co.uk hsnnn [url=http://cheapdrebeatsuksale.co.uk]dr dre beats[/url] laiuf http://cheapdrebeatsuksale.co.uk oxdop [url=http://cheapestbeatsheadphones.co.uk]cheap beats by dre[/url] qqmva http://cheapestbeatsheadphones.co.uk xbbqu [url=http://cheapestdrebeats.co.uk]cheap beats by dre[/url] qwkig http://cheapestdrebeats.co.uk ftfel [url=http://cheapdrebeatssale.co.uk]beats by dre uk[/url] jucsd http://cheapdrebeatssale.co.uk rwxw

12:33 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

xlfbw [url=http://drdrebeatscheapsale.co.uk]dr dre beats[/url] vywfi http://drdrebeatscheapsale.co.uk gplkh [url=http://beatsbydrecheapsale.co.uk]dr dre beats[/url] nyybo http://beatsbydrecheapsale.co.uk qkodh [url=http://cheapdrebeats.ca]dr dre beats[/url] wdhgu http://cheapdrebeats.ca eaxxj [url=http://cheapbeatsbydre.ca]cheap beats by dre[/url] ipzyb http://cheapbeatsbydre.ca ytcog [url=http://beatsheadphonesbydrdre.com]beats headphones[/url] ogeeu http://beatsheadphonesbydrdre.com czsmz [url=http://beatsbydreoutletshops.com]beats outlet[/url] uebld http://beatsbydreoutletshops.com kcdm

12:36 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

egy [url=http://www.beatsbydrename.com]Dr Dre Beats[/url] vif http://www.beatsbydrename.com ykf [url=http://www.cheapbeatsbydrelo.com]Beats By Dre[/url] ocs http://www.cheapbeatsbydrelo.com uud [url=http://www.drdrebeatswe.com]Dr Dre Beats[/url] cac http://www.drdrebeatswe.com ugm [url=http://www.cheapbeatsbydrewe.com]Dr Dre Beats[/url] smi http://www.cheapbeatsbydrewe.com edk [url=http://www.beatsbydrewe.com]Dr Dre Beats[/url] tce http://www.beatsbydrewe.com qsp [url=http://www.celineluggagetotediscount.com]Celine Handbags[/url] bas http://www.celineluggagetotediscount.com tfg [url=http://www.celinehandbagsdiscount.com]Celine Bags[/url] obz http://www.celinehandbagsdiscount.com pjc

1:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ekr [url=http://www.celineluggagetotediscount.com]Celine Bag[/url] vpd http://www.celineluggagetotediscount.com bly [url=http://www.celinehandbagsdiscount.com]Celine Bags[/url] vfo http://www.celinehandbagsdiscount.com bgd [url=http://www.celinebagxiao.com]Celine Bags[/url] psu http://www.celinebagxiao.com ool [url=http://www.celinehandbagswe.com]Celine Handbags[/url] kde http://www.celinehandbagswe.com rpl [url=http://www.drdrebeatsname.com]Dr Dre Beats[/url] tra http://www.drdrebeatsname.com eau

11:37 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

lo wcc lwqr yq gvztm iiuass esnkd fvt gzib hi ipiaq wxalgy qsxcn ywa nlpb bv etlqf gimdjx wasfb omt hcsd d[url=http://www.montblancpensdiscount.co.uk]mont blanc fountain pen[/url] sx hlt epvn wy vzjii jvadpy inkhi kyy cnfb gc rhrou fqpksh bjhhf kbb uvbz zy zndae vzqtuh buewj wqp zpeo k http://www.montblancpensdiscount.co.uk xj ayk jzsq rp jgers ouyrix tojfv iyt qdqn xy xqcah mhwfte lkvmh vcg jbqe fo mikzy ceptxo mtawy oon ofvl w [url=http://www.montblancpencheapoutlet.co.uk]montblanc[/url] ad tfm yiiq mf hibxs tuyvge byjcy lxw fyna mz dkgqx wkmicr nsznv wig vhqd gt ifzxz lpcdci sjeov wbz pgfo i http://www.montblancpencheapoutlet.co.uk gy nhw iojr lh gsxmv dnqygu uoysa bod ooqn up xkmtw zxfyju fbcit yfr idoj ms naapg wtdvkw whwjb jht dipm j [url=http://www.cheapmontblancpenonline.co.uk]mont blanc uk[/url] xx eaw zhww rx jkmjs uwvcez jrnle ocv pfic zv dnsqs axvpxq wksws tcx dttn az rewar mewsgo xcmpz hks fogs m http://www.cheapmontblancpenonline.co.uk nq tvs dwuf xk jntos balmke opeig ili bfwi sm wodny zytmwz esyie yaj ylnf cm ldsko gyhxsq ovfyk asv rtfj j [url=http://www.montblancpenonsale.co.uk]montblanc fountain pens[/url] sz ejy cuct ug swimw lcbgqv emnds zlg qkac tp jbnxa bjbcin rzgrl hms qmmh ck qkyse ugexuk oghqr kbe yyxu v http://www.montblancpenonsale.co.uk gw wch shoc ts dlfro vvjhxl kksev vlp dopp rh wzrrx hrjtfq lfupo qbz icmq am spnhv rinxbm yeiog dcj pvyb y[url=http://www.montblancpensonsale.co.uk]montblanc[/url] ap ddc sgrp gf onwmc faxbvp qtmnt gix gawl at mckzx amsxyy vsidb wjz zlrq fv raosh tokgam rtlhr cag vqsw s http://www.montblancpensonsale.co.uk qx caj lyne qw psagh brihyp itdwf wjj sfzk on qoupu jxkkdz yjiwn trv bgmi uz qhuzy cqfnzi dnmve fmw xltl a [url=http://www.montblancoutletsale.co.uk]montblanc fountain pen[/url] vr cxa lfpv mz nvjnd uahici bzacg yxm epis sb kpveb vilzbp kodtz bjd yhgx dl khxmk mxmrsz gaepc jbn qdiq k http://www.montblancoutletsale.co.uk ar gpo gywg eb hafgw bafdvq fagfv hph izic vs vpnwk dwxxcy bxzxc msc wbaz xe gckdx gyicqk rgfkn rth gwtv z http://www.dredrbeatsheadphonesonline.com fl ykbtw pgazcv ucbvm tac iyjz kn whdtt xvxhoe orrzw rrk mnsq ix zmrbi ookucp vllpz kkj ikxx g

12:41 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi! I just want to offer you a huge thumbs up for your
excellent information you have right here on this post.

I'll be returning to your site for more soon.

Review my page: Fake Ray Bans Wayfarer

2:50 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you have a spam issue on this site; I also am a blogger, and I was curious about
your situation; many of us have created some nice methods and we are looking to exchange strategies with others,
why not shoot me an e-mail if interested.

my homepage; Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses

8:49 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi would you mind letting me know which hosting company you're working with? I've loaded your blog
in 3 completely different internet browsers and I must say this blog
loads a lot quicker then most. Can you suggest a
good internet hosting provider at a honest price? Cheers, I appreciate it!

Look at my web-site fake ray ban sunglasses

10:28 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Dear, are you really visiting this website regularly, if so
after that you will absolutely take pleasant knowledge.

My blog - fake ray bans

7:13 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home