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An Enigma machine is any of a family of related electro-mechanical rotor machines used for the encryption and decryption of secret messages. The first Enigma was invented by German engineer Arthur Scherbius at the end of World War I. This model and its variants were used commercially from the early 1920s, and adopted by military and government services of several countries — most notably by Nazi Germany before and during World War II. Several different Enigma models were produced, but the German military models, the Wehrmacht Enigmas, are the ones most commonly discussed. The Enigma Machine enciphers a message with a basic substitution cipher. That is, every letter is replaced by another letter from the alphabet - for example, A for E, B for Z, and so on. The Enigma Machine expands on this concept in two interesting ways: first, it accomplishes this substitution by a series of electrical connections that are hidden from the user. Second, these connections are placed in a set of rotors which can rotate, changing the electrical connections and thus the substitution cipher. This rotation is what made the Enigma code so difficult to crack - it meant that every letter in a message was enciphered using a different substitution cipher, because the rotors would rotate after every letter was entered. In December 1932, the Polish Cipher Bureau first broke Germany's Enigma ciphers. Five weeks before the outbreak of World War II, on 25 July 1939, in Warsaw, the Polish Cipher Bureau gave Enigma-decryption techniques and equipment to French and British military intelligence. Thanks to this, during the war, allied codebreakers were able to decrypt a vast number of messages that had been enciphered using the Enigma. The intelligence gleaned from this source, codenamed "Ultra" by the British, was a substantial aid to the Allied war effort. The exact influence of Ultra on the course of the war is debated; an oft-repeated assessment is that decryption of German ciphers hastened the end of the European war by two years. Winston Churchill told Britain's King George VI after World War II: "It was thanks to Ultra that we won the war." Though the Enigma cipher had some cryptographic weaknesses, in practice it was only in combination with other factors (procedural flaws, operator mistakes, occasional captured hardware and key tables) that those weaknesses allowed Allied cryptographers to be so successful. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]



Pruno, or prison wine, is an alcoholic liquid variously made from apples, oranges, fruit cocktail, ketchup, sugar, and possibly other ingredients, including bread. Pruno originated in (and remains largely confined to) prisons, where it can be produced cheaply, easily, and discreetly. The concoction can be made using only a plastic bag, hot running water, and a towel or sock to conceal the pulp during fermentation. The end result has been colorfully described as a "vomit-flavored wine-cooler", although flavor is not the primary objective. Depending on the time spent fermenting, the sugar content, and the quality of the ingredients and preparation, pruno's alcohol content by volume can range from as low as 2% (equivalent to a very weak beer) to as high as 14% (equivalent to a strong wine). Typically, the fermenting mass of fruit — called the motor in prison parlance (from "promoter") - is retained from batch to batch to make the fermentation start faster. The more sugar that is added, the greater the potential for a higher alcohol content — to a point. Beyond this point, the waste products of fermentation cause the motor to die when the yeasts outgrow their food supply. This also causes the taste of the end product to suffer. Ascorbic acid or Vitamin C powder is sometimes used to stop the fermentation at a certain point, which, combined with the tartness of the added acid, somewhat enhances the taste by reducing the cloyingly sweet flavour associated with pruno. Inmates are not permitted to have alcoholic beverages, and prison authorities confiscate pruno whenever they find it. In an effort to eradicate pruno, some wardens have gone as far as banning all fresh fruit from prison cafeterias. But even this is not always enough; there are pruno varieties made almost entirely from sauerkraut and orange juice. A variety of other prison-made alcoholic potables are known to exist. These include crude wines, famously fermented in toilet tanks. Sugary beverages like orange drink may also be fermented and distilled using a radiator or other available heat source. Though popularized in prison fiction, these techniques are slow and laborious, and generally result in a low alcohol content. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]





Samuel Leroy Jackson is an American film and television actor and film producer. After Jackson became involved with the Civil Rights Movement, he moved on to acting in theater at Morehouse College, and then films. After the 1968 assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., Jackson attended the funeral in Atlanta as one of the ushers. Jackson then flew to Memphis to join an equal rights protest march. In a Parade interview Jackson revealed: "I was angry about the assassination, but I wasn’t shocked by it. I knew that change was going to take something different — not sit-ins, not peaceful coexistence." In 1969, Jackson and several other students held members of the Morehouse College board of trustees hostage on the campus, demanding reform in the school's curriculum and governance. The college eventually agreed to change its policy, but Jackson was charged with and eventually convicted of unlawful confinement, a second-degree felony. Jackson was then suspended for two years for his criminal record and his actions, although he would later return to the college to earn his Bachelor of Arts in Drama in 1972. Early in his career, Jackson developed alcoholism and cocaine addictions, resulting in him being unable to proceed with the two plays as they continued to Broadway. Throughout his early film career, mainly in minimal roles in films such as Coming to America and various television films, Jackson was mentored by Morgan Freeman. After a 1981 performance in the play A Soldier's Play, Jackson was introduced to director Spike Lee who would later include him in small roles for the films School Daze (1988) and Do the Right Thing (1989). He also played a minor role in the 1990 Martin Scorsese film Goodfellas as real-life Mafia associate Stacks Edwards and also worked as a stand-in on The Cosby Show for Bill Cosby. After completing these films, Jackson's cocaine addiction had worsened. As a result, his family entered him into a New York rehab clinic. When he successfully completed rehab, Jackson appeared in Jungle Fever, as a crack cocaine addict, a role which Jackson called cathartic as he was recovering from his addiction. The film was so acclaimed that the 1991 Cannes Film Festival created a special "Supporting Actor" award just for him. In 1994 he was cast as Jules Winnfield in Pulp Fiction, and his performance received several award nominations and critical acclaim. Warning: video contains adult content. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]





The most surreptitious way of cracking a safe is to manipulate the lock in order to obtain the combination required to open the safe without actually damaging the safe. Some rotary combination locks can be manipulated by feel or sound in order to determine the combination required to open the safe. More sophisticated locks use wheels made from lightweight materials which reduces this vulnerability. Another anti-manipulation mechanism is serrated wheels (false tumbler notches) that make tactile techniques much more difficult. Another defense is a clutch-type driver wheel that prevents contact of the fence to the tumblers except in one position. These locks can be identified by a "click-click" feeling in the dial or by a dial that is pushed in and turned. number of companies and groups have developed autodialing machines to open safes. Unlike fictional machines that can open a combination in seconds, such machines are usually specific to a particular type of lock and must cycle through thousands of combinations to open a device. A good example of such a device is a project completed by two students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Kyle Vogt and Grant Jordan. Their machine, built to open a Sargent and Greenleaf 8400 lock on a Diebold Safe, found an unknown combination in 21,000 tries. Lockmasters, Inc. markets two autodialing machines that work on a variety of 3 digit combination safe locks. There also exists a device called soft drill, that is like an autodialer except it listens to the lock and with the aid of a computer makes logic decision like a human manipulator would do. A success rate of 95% has been given to this type of machine. While most safes are hard to open, most are susceptible to compromise by drilling or other physical methods. Manufacturers publish drill-point diagrams for specific models of safe. These are tightly guarded by both the manufacturers and locksmithing professionals. Drilling is usually aimed at gaining access to the safe by observation or bypass of the locking mechanism. Drilling is the most common method used by locksmiths, and is the only method that can be used in cases of burglary attempts, malfunctioning locks or damaged locks. In observational attacks, the drill hole allows the safecracker to view the internal state of the combination lock. Drill-points are often located close to the axis of the dial on the combination lock, but observation may sometimes require drilling through the top, sides or rear of the safe. While observing the lock, the locksmith manipulates the dial to align the lock gates so that the fence falls and the bolt is disengaged. Other methods of cracking a safe generally involve damaging the safe so that it is no longer functional. These methods may involve explosives or other devices to inflict severe force and damage the safe so it may be opened. This method requires care as the contents of the safe may be damaged. Safe-crackers can use what are known as jam shots to blow off the safe's doors. Most modern safes are fitted with 'relockers' (like the one described above) which are triggered by excessive force and will then lock the safe semi-permanently (a safe whose relocker has tripped must then be forced, the combination or key alone will no longer suffice). This is why a professional safe technician will use manipulation rather than brute force to open a safe so they do not risk releasing the relocker. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]



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