Monday, May 23, 2005

Coded Messages

People have used coded messages to send information for a long time. Messages can be coded for a couple of reasons. Sometimes the message is coded to prevent other people from reading the message. Even the Romans used to use secret codes to send messages so the enemy would not be able to understand the message were they to capture the messenger.

One code they used to use was to take a long strip of paper and wrap it around a stick, barber-shop style. Now write the message down the stick. Fill in the rest of the paper with random letters. Now take the paper off the stick. If you try and read it, the message looks like a meaningless jumble of letters. To read the message, just wrap it around the stick again.

Another reason for sending coded messages is for speed. The general might order part of his troops to wait until they see the smoke from a bonfire, then attack. The meaning of the message is decided upon beforehand. Then a very simple thing, like lighting a fire or waving a flag, can have a larger significance due to the previously agreed upon meaning it had already been given.

You probably have some coded messages you and your sweetie use to communicate. Maybe there is a certain look or a special word that means something only to each other. For the past several months a few "coded messages" have worked their way into this page. For a good time, try some of these:
Later we'll explore some more fun ways of a secret message to your sweetie.
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