0177: "Alice and Bob"

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Corvin
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0177: "Alice and Bob"

Postby Corvin » Mon Oct 30, 2006 5:46 am UTC

is xkcd really barred from speaking at crypto conferences?

is it really for these reasons?

because that would make me giggle insanely.

Corvin

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Postby Verysillyman » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:02 am UTC

Crypto conference organiser wrote:"This year's guest speaker was going to be Randall Munroe, however, after reviewing his topics we've canceled the conference instead. It's better for all of us this way."

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Postby Hawknc » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:17 am UTC

I'll be the first to say it: what?

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Postby Peshmerga » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:20 am UTC

I feel relatively smart after reading this comic because I decided one night to do an extensive internet-research on the topic of cryptology, including the dos and donts and methods of crytoanalysis.
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Postby Gelsamel » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:52 am UTC

I'm in love with Eve and her eavesdropping.

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Postby wisnij » Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:22 am UTC

But did Victor verify Eve's findings?
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Postby LE4dGOLEM » Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:56 am UTC

Dunno. Call Trent.
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Postby heatsink » Mon Oct 30, 2006 2:55 pm UTC

She sounds more like a Trudy than an Eve.

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Postby strangequarks » Mon Oct 30, 2006 5:04 pm UTC

Poor eve, she feels so victimised.

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She should team up with Mallory for some revenge

Postby lemming » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:18 pm UTC

(finally registered for forums, been reading quite a while...)

I spent the first few panels trying to decide whether she was Eve or Mallory. All things considered, the two of them should team up to give Alice (and maybe Bob, only Alice, Bob and Eve know the whole story, presumably) what for.

Just as a handy link, there's a fairly famous speech that was given about Alice and Bob. It's a good laugh if you haven't read it yet:
http://downlode.org/Etext/alicebob.html

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Postby strangequarks » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:21 pm UTC

That starts off funny and then goes downhill. Which is a shame.

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Postby LE4dGOLEM » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:33 pm UTC

No, it starts off funny and goes obscure and emotional, which is a shame.
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Postby username » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:40 pm UTC

Everyone should check out MC Plus+.

He's a computer science gangsta rapper who has two "albums" available to download for free.

Of particular relevance is the song "Alice and Bob" off the Algorhythms album.

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Re: She should team up with Mallory for some revenge

Postby EM-002.rv-L "Tem Cu » Tue Oct 31, 2006 8:27 am UTC

lemming wrote:(finally registered for forums, been reading quite a while...)

I spent the first few panels trying to decide whether she was Eve or Mallory. All things considered, the two of them should team up to give Alice (and maybe Bob, only Alice, Bob and Eve know the whole story, presumably) what for.

Just as a handy link, there's a fairly famous speech that was given about Alice and Bob. It's a good laugh if you haven't read it yet:
http://downlode.org/Etext/alicebob.html


Ah yes. This justifies my optimism for humanity...
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Postby Narsil » Tue Oct 31, 2006 4:05 pm UTC

I thought he was barred for the Missy Elliot thing.

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Postby theY4Kman » Tue Oct 31, 2006 6:59 pm UTC

Narsil wrote:I thought he was barred for the Missy Elliot thing.

He was. This comic is about Alice and Bob, which are programming alternatives to A and B (Like X or Y in Math). Cryptography and Programming are hand in hand, apparently, now, so that's why it was mentioned...Or maybe it was off-topic...

I don't know, I need sleep.
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Postby Brandon » Tue Oct 31, 2006 8:11 pm UTC

I created an account just to let you all know that if your background is in cryptography that is a darn funny comic. Ah, man, I was showing that around to people.

As a quick explanation, in discussions of cryptography and encodings, etc, Bob is the standard name of the party sending information, and Alice is the standard name of the party receiving information. If there's a passive listener on the line, eavesdropping on the call, we call her Eve (get it, Eavesdropping = Eve?). If Eve fiddles with the information, she's called Mallory, and if there's a trusted third party, he's called Trent. We just use names instead of letters or roles because it's easier to say "Bob's message is read by Eve" than "The outgoing message sent by the first party was intercepted and read by a passive third party listener who's not trusted".

So, thanks, comic writer person. Made my day :)

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Postby umbrae » Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:54 am UTC

Brandon wrote:So, thanks, comic writer person. Made my day :)


Seconded.

The thing I love most about xkcd is that not all comics are meant to be understood by everyone. That makes them all the more funny when you actually get them. If you don't understand them and you take the time to actually research a little, you learn something and find it funny.

It's a win-win.

-Umbrae

(P.S. I actually never followed that it was Eve for 'Eavesdrop'. I thought it was Eve for 'Evil'. :P)

(P.P.S. Fuck computational linguists.)

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Postby theY4Kman » Thu Nov 02, 2006 12:46 pm UTC

umbrae wrote:(P.P.S. Fuck computational linguists.)

By joining these forums, are you not a hypocrite for saying that now? :D
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umbrae
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Postby umbrae » Tue Nov 07, 2006 3:42 am UTC

Not that I'm aware of. I don't implement natural language processing on a daily basis. I was just trying to be absurd anyway.

If you mean, since I'm a linguist who uses computational means to convey (by posting on a forum), then I guess I am, but I think that's a natural language processing error. ;)

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Postby Cbass » Fri Nov 10, 2006 3:56 pm UTC

theY4Kman wrote:
umbrae wrote:(P.P.S. Fuck computational linguists.)

By joining these forums, are you not a hypocrite for saying that now? :D



Nope, just a desperate man (or woman) trying to get a little more action in his field

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Postby II » Thu Apr 05, 2007 1:44 am UTC

Insane coincidence.

I read this comic and had a faint recollection of the idea from a scfi story by Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross called Flowers from Alice. Whether the author really intended it to have anything to do with Alice and Bob is beyond me as the main character's name is Cyd. Maybe B=>C?

Anyway, I went back to my course kit to re-read the story, and Doctorow is apparently the coeditor of boingboing.net. Creepy or what?
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Postby sysctl » Sat Jun 02, 2007 8:22 pm UTC

Brandon wrote:I created an account just to let you all know that if your background is in cryptography that is a darn funny comic. Ah, man, I was showing that around to people.

Seconded! That's brilliant.


Registered just to say that.

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Postby Sprocket » Fri Jul 13, 2007 5:21 pm UTC

creepy.
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Postby BrianX » Sun Jul 22, 2007 6:06 am UTC

CatProximity wrote:To be blatantly obvious here but, what kind of person do you think Eve is?

How would she dress? Is she kind of a crazy, computer hacker (pardon the language), fictional typical bad ass...an ordinary woman who's got a stock trading, narc ducking, two timming crime boss for a husband and has just learned enough to be able to observe her husbands dealings? A girlfriend or lover rather than a wife? If you were going to "be eve" for halloween, how would you do it?


She's about 5'9", brown hair, light freckles, wears a brown t-shirt and khakis, and works as a comedian. She has a new boyfriend who was waiting in the car, but she's still angry at Bob.

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I made a movie of #177

Postby BrianX » Mon Jul 23, 2007 4:20 am UTC

"A Rebuttal"

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Thanks!

Postby ejeffrey » Mon Jul 23, 2007 4:37 am UTC

I just used this comic as the last slide in my thesis defense presentation. Thanks!

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q00u
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Postby q00u » Mon Jul 23, 2007 6:20 am UTC

Because I had to look up the comic in question in order to follow the discussion, here:

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Alt text: Yet one more reason I'm barred from speaking at crypto conferences.

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Zak McKracken
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Postby Zak McKracken » Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:11 am UTC

q00u wrote:Because I had to look up the comic in question in order to follow the discussion, here:
[...]
Alt text: Yet one more reason I'm barred from speaking at crypto conferences.


1.: Thanks for posting -- I was just going to search it for myself. I figure the start of this thread was deleted sometime ago.

2.: Can anyone explain wether and why randall was actually barred from speaking at crypto conferences? I can't really see a reason here, though the first posts still visible don't seem to be joking about it.

Thanks,

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Postby Arancaytar » Tue Jul 24, 2007 3:02 pm UTC

I'm pretty sure it's a joke.

Because even if he does do this kind of thing at crypto conferences, cryptographers are mathematicians. And mathematicians have a weird, very weird sense of humor. Except possibly those who work for the NSA. :P

(Doesn't Schneier read this comic?)

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Postby ocean_soul » Wed Jul 25, 2007 6:52 pm UTC

You have no idea how much jokes about the relationships between Alic Bob and Eve go around on a conference about quantum informatics.

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Maurog
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Postby Maurog » Thu Aug 02, 2007 2:39 pm UTC

Zak McKracken wrote:2.: Can anyone explain wether and why randall was actually barred from speaking at crypto conferences? I can't really see a reason here, though the first posts still visible don't seem to be joking about it.

It's just a reference to http://xkcd.com/153/.

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Re: Bob

Postby alice » Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:25 am UTC

I deny all claims made by any third party. I regret nothing.

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Re: Official "Alice and Bob" Discussion

Postby Deviant » Thu Dec 13, 2007 5:27 pm UTC

This was the first xkcd comic I read back in university, I burst out laughing to the bemusment of my fellow students. Obviously I read far far too many wikipedia entries. I think this is a refrence to the Diffie Hellman key exchange ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diffie_hellman ), though alice bob and eve are pretty generic in cryptography terms. Ever since I read this comic I have been hooked!


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