University of Virginia, Department of Computer Science
CS588: Cryptography, Spring 2005

Spring Break Assignments

Project Progress

Before Monday, 14 March at 11:59pm every project group should send me an email containing:


Before Thursday, 17 March class, read Chapter 8 in the textbook and the two attached papers:

Whitfield Diffie and Martin Hellman. New Directions in Cryptography, 1976.

R.L. Rivest, A. Shamir, L. Adleman. A Method for Obtaining Digital Signatures and Public-Key Cryptosystems , 1978. This is the original RSA paper, perhaps the most important paper published in any field in the last 30 years. You should read it first in a "special" location like the Rotunda or a lawn garden (or a beach or ski lodge if you are so fortunate to be on one for Spring break). Then, you should read it again in a normal study location.

Useful Proof Methods

Proof by intimidation: "Trivial" or "obvious."
Proof by exhaustion: An issue or two of a journal devoted to your proof is useful.
Proof by omission: ``The reader may easily supply the details'', ``The other 253 cases are analogous''
Proof by obfuscation: A long plotless sequence of true and/or meaningless syntactically related statements.
Proof by funding: How could three different government agencies be wrong?
Proof by lack of funding: How could anything funded by those bozos be correct?
Proof by democracy: A lot of people believe it's true: how could they all be wrong?
Proof by reference to inaccessible literature: The author cites a simple corollary of a theorem to be found in a privately circulated memoir of the Icelandic Philological Society, 1883. This works even better if the paper has never been translated from the original Icelandic.
Proof by forward reference: Reference is usually to a forthcoming paper of the author, which is often not as forthcoming as at first.
Proof by flashy graphics: A moving sequence of shaded, 3D color models will convince anyone that your object recognition algorithm works. An SGI workstation is helpful here.
Proof by vehement assertion: It is useful to have some kind of authority relation to the audience, so this is particularly useful in classroom settings.
Proof by vigorous handwaving: Works well in a classroom, seminar, or workshop setting.
Proof by cumbersome notation: Best done with access to at least four alphabets, special symbols, and the newest release of LaTeX.
Proof by lack of space: "The proof is not detailled due to lack of space in this proceedings..." works well in conjunction with proof by forward reference.

Selected from
None of these proof methods are suggested in your CS588 problem sets or exams.

CS 655 University of Virginia
Department of Computer Science
CS 588: Cryptology - Principles and Applications