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turbinetree

(24,577 posts)
Wed Apr 1, 2020, 07:28 PM Apr 2020

The Woman Who Smashed Codes: The Untold Story of Cryptography Pioneer Elizebeth Friedman [View all]

How an unsung heroine established a new field of science and helped defeat the Nazis with pencil, paper, and perseverance.
Brain Pickings |

Maria Popova

While computing pioneer Alan Turing was breaking Nazi communication in England, eleven thousand women, unbeknownst to their contemporaries and to most of us who constitute their posterity, were breaking enemy code in America — unsung heroines who helped defeat the Nazis and win WWII.

Among them was American cryptography pioneer Elizebeth Friedman (August 26, 1892–October 31, 1980). The subject of Jason Fagone’s excellent biography (public library), Friedman triumphed over at least three Enigma machines and cracked dozens of different radio circuits to decipher more than four thousand Nazi messages that saved innumerable lives, only to have J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI take credit for her invisible, instrumental work.

Fagone writes:

The modern-day universe of codes and ciphers began in a cottage on the prairie, with a pair of young lovers smiling at each other across a table and a rich man urging them to be spectacular.

The two young lovers were Elizebeth Smith and William Friedman, and the rich man, the eccentric textile tycoon George Fabyan.

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/the-woman-who-smashed-codes-the-untold-story-of-cryptography-pioneer-elizebeth-friedman?utm_source=pocket-newtab



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thanks Locrian Apr 2020 #1
K&R smirkymonkey Apr 2020 #2
Wonderful story Roland99 Apr 2020 #3
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