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This Blog is a chronological log of the development of CryptoLeague.com taken from the notebooks of Christopher Cracknell.   The story starts with the oldest articles at the bottom of the list.

The Little Notebook - a look at the solver tool PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 29 September 2010 09:08

I use computer based design and analysis tools, but I have to be honest;  frequently I do the first sketches/notes for a design or plan on paper.   Using a notebook per project makes a very useful historical record of the project - I frequently find myself consulting these notes during the later stages of a project to remind myself why I did something in a particular manner.

For this project I used a small school jotter, since they are on special offer in Germany right now (due to the start of the school year) and I can pick them up for about 15 cents apiece!   For this installment, I have decided to simply show you a scanned page from the notebook for this project, so that you can see what the raw creative process looks like...

Use Cases PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 29 September 2010 08:40

Use Case analysis involves identifying who is going to use the system, and what each of these actors is going to do.   "Who" in this case may be other components of a complex system, or web-services, etc.   i.e. Not necessarily a real flesh and blood person.

This form of analysis is very useful early on in the project as a tool for capturing the user requirements.   It is also useful in the testing/verification phase, since it explicitly states who needs to verify what behaviour.

Mind Mapping PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 28 September 2010 12:18

The Mind Map is a useful tools for capturing one's thoughts on paper.   It is especially useful in the early, conceptual, stages of a project where it is important to get a good overall picture of all the diverse aspects relevant to the development.

I actually used my little paper notebook (more on that in another installment), but I have used FreePlane, an open source mind mapping tool, to produce the diagrams here:

A Look at the Competition PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 28 September 2010 11:49

After putting my initial concept down on paper, the next sensible thing to do is to have a look at what else is already there.   In this day and age it is rather naive to suppose that any idea is genuinely new and/or that the competition is remote enough to ignore.

Sure enough, I found a few sites doing more or less exactly what I had proposed.   Including one with simple monoalphabetic substitutions, an interactive client, a large database of puzzles and tools to anayse the results.   Another offered daily puzzles on Android phones.   I'm sure there is an iPhone equivalent.   Hmmm!   What now?


Welcome to the CryptoLeague Development Blog PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 28 September 2010 11:38

One of the reasons for this development was as a case study in using a number of open source technologies tied together in a real world example and using an appropriate development process to manage the development.   The selection of the technologies and of the development process is part of the case study.

In the course of this blog I will document the steps taken in developing the concept of this website and the actual building blocks used to implement it.   The decisions made during this process and the reasons for making them are important, but the way in which the decisions were made and coordinated is even more important.


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