Substance Abuse & Body Image

Abuse & Misuse of substances to change body shape is highly dangerous and could even bee lethal. The use of steroids and many other weight loss or body enhancement drugs often have many side effects. Examples would be high blood pressure, difficulty breathing, sweating, cardiac arrest, and sometimes even death. Avoid recreational use of them at all costs.

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The Science of Secrecy

“The science of secrecy from ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography” The Code Book, a national bestseller brings you through the epic story of the evolution of cryptology. Throughout this book in which great minds tackle great problems, there is a common theme. No matter what you do, Never. Give. Up.

One of the great achievements in cryptology was the cracking of the Vigenère Cipher, this one cipher took humans 3 centuries to finally crack. This cipher was nothing like the monoalphabetic substitution ciphers that had previously been cracked because this was not vulnerable to frequency analysis. Mr. Babbage, the first person to crack it, almost took an entire year to do so. There were many steps that Mr. Babbage had to take to finally decipher the Vigenère Cipher. “While most cryptanalysts had given up all hope of ever breaking the Vigenère cipher, Babbage was inspired to attempt a decipherment by an exchange of letter with John Hall Brock Thwaites, a dentist from Bristol with a rather innocent view of ciphers.” (Singh, 67) With his different approach to this 300-year-old cipher, he had managed to crack it. But this wasn’t done without strong perseverance and all the failures that came with it. Although his work was not published and he didn’t gain the recognition he deserved, his contributions in cracking the Vigenère Cipher has made him one of the all-time great cryptanalysts.

World War II could’ve tilted the other way if it weren’t for this.

With tensions rising, Europe was on the brink of war, Germany seemed to have the ultimate cipher which would secure transmitted information, but there was 1 country who had already got a head start at tackling this machine. Poland. Polish cryptanalysts were determined exploit every weakness of the Enigma to gain access to German communications. First, a bit of background knowledge, the Nazis had a day key that consisted of 3 letters, and with every message that was sent with the Enigma the operators had picked a message key, also consisting of 3 letters. All day keys were predetermined and every month the lists for every day key would be distributed. But here was the weakness in the Enigma that Rejewski, the cryptanalyst leading the way for cracking the Enigma, had exploited. Every single day key had been typed twice into the Enigma machine before operators would switch to the message key. Repetition is every cipher’s weakness and Rejewski had started on this lead.

Rejewski had noticed the 1st and 4th letters of every message are encryptions of the same letter, the 2nd and 5th letters also share this relationship, as well as the 3rd and 6th. Knowing that all 1st and 4th letters were related by the initial setting of the Enigma machine had allowed him to find relationships between them. If he had intercepted enough messages, he would complete the alphabet in which he would know what the 4th letter would be encrypted as by looking at the 1st encrypted letter.

Example:

1st letter: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

4th letter: F Q H P L W O G B M V R X U Y C Z I T N J E A S D K

Rejewski knew that the table of relationships would be completely different every time the day key changed. From there, he had created chains of letters. For example, he would see that A on the top row was linked to F on the bottom row, F on the top row was linked to W on the bottom row, and W on the top row would link to A on the bottom row. That was a chain done. He would generate more chains with the rest of the alphabet. Once he was done, he would record the number of links. In our example:

A-F-W-A                                                                                                                           3 links

B-Q-Z-K-V-E-L-R-I-B                                                                                                   9 links

C-H-G-O-Y-D-P-C                                                                                                          7 links

J-M-X-S-T-N-U-J                                                                                                           7 links

This was only for the 1st and 4th letters, he would do the same thing for the 2nd and 5th letter as well as the 3rd and 6th letters. Rejewski noticed that both the length of the chains and the letters in the chains changed every day. So what he did was figure out all 105,456 combinations of chains (3 rotors, 6 combinations, each rotor has 26 options) To this day, that library of chains can still be accessed. Now with only a few minutes of searching, the day key could be obtained and German communications could now be heard by the polish.

This little story is the start of an epic fight for the right of secret communications. But this was the story that allowed the enormous task of finding the 1 out of 158,962,555,217,826,360,000 possible combinations every day. This only talks about the successes of Rejewski, so just imagine how many times he had ideas that led to nowhere. If it weren’t for Rejewski’s determination to crack the Enigma, the world might now have been what it is today.

The science of secrecy is one that takes great determination and skill to succeed in. From Caesar preventing others reading his messages to hashing algorithms that keep everybody’s passwords safe, cryptology is subject that not many people pursue, but everybody relies on. If it weren’t for the perseverance of many cryptanalysts, cryptology would not be as advanced as it is today.

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Adapting

At only 13 years of age, James Beckett had been doing deliveries for KMG, a huge drug business in England. But he wasn’t the only one. Hundreds of other teenage boys were also doing drug deliveries on a regular basis to make a bit of money. But money isn’t James’ incentive. The theme for Class A by Robert Muchamore is that change is inevitable and adapting to the current situation is key.

One example for this would be when James Adams (James Beckett) had sat next to one of the people that Junior Moore disliked and James would’ve not been able to make friends with Junior Moore. He had then gotten into a fight with Junior Moore. Although Moore was strong, James’ superior skills and technique had quickly brought Moore down. With him down, James had to make a quick decision, if he made the wrong one the mission might not be able to continue. But luckily, he had made the right decision. “He had decided to put his hand out” (Muchamore, 87) If he had either left him or kept attacking him, he could’ve been seen as an enemy and would’ve had even less chance of befriending Junior Moore.

Another example would be when Kerry Chang had found the company that had mixed KMG’s cocaine. With her barely holding on to a spot in a mission, she wanted James to company her into the warehouse. With Kyle partying and Nicole asleep, James had to improvise and take Lauren, his untrained little sister, with him. She had done well when covering for Kerry and James as they scouted the warehouse but panic as she saw guards. Although Lauren had gotten into a lot of trouble the following day, the little scavenger was a huge success. Without the quick thinking of Kerry and James, the mission could’ve taken a lot long than it did.

One last example is when James was trapped in the house with 3 psycho murderers in the house. He had told Junior Moore to run and get help while he remained in the house. Hiding behind a ledge, he had lashed out as a armed man had walked in. Quickly grabbing a hold of the gun, he pointed it at the man. James never wanted to kill, but it was a life or death situation and the round went into the man’s body. But that wasn’t it. He had sneaked into the garage and fired up the range rover he had just sat in a few hours ago. The men noticed this and fired shots at the getaway car but the Range Rover held up. James had “turned and slammed the accelerator” (262) as the car sped down the beach. Once he was sure he was out of sight, he went to a local police station to tell his mission controller, Ewart Asker, about the situation.

This book has a lot of suspense and out came a lot of possible themes, but the mission of taking down KMG would almost have definitely failed if it wasn’t for the quick thinking of the CHERUB agents and their flexibility to adapt to the situation.

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WANTED: James Beckett

A New Design

“Drugs, Cars and Guns!”

After causing chaos in the nearby megastore in his neighborhood, I felt it was only right for me to make a WANTED poster for him. His friend, Keith Moore Jr. and he had sneaked out of school and opted to go to a nearby mall, from there, they had attempted to sneak PS4 games out of the store, everything was looking good until the buzzer had gone off. Keith and James had them sprinting as security scrambled after them. When security personnel had got in their way, they used their combat skills to bring them down and the chase had finally stopped when they were out of site.

One of the things that were challenging while making this was finding the information from the book that had the details. This WANTED poster had been based off characteristics from Class A by Robert Muchamore and is one of the many missions in the CHERUB series

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Done With Guns

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Magazine Cover for Lysander

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Moving On

The theme “The only way to move on is to leave the past behind” has been shown in this book cover. This book is mainly about how the main character, Ryan, who saw his best friend commit suicide, decided to o on a mission to uncover the reason behind his friend’s death and exposed panjea’s secret goals to the public

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What had Started the Renaissance

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Hack or be Cracked

“’What is the silence of six, and what are you going to do about it?’” Those were the last words said by Evan Baxter, 17-year-old Max Stein’s best friend. Seconds before hacking into the live Presidential debate at their high school and, committing suicide. Max was left with the scenes of his best friend dying. With the FBI on his tail and so many questions needed to be answered, Max needed to have perseverance, intelligence, and for his curiosity to help him think through tough situations while he’s on the run.

Firstly, he always had the will to persevere and keep on going even when situations were dire and everything was against him. One example would be when Penny and Risse, otherwise known as DoubleThink, had decided to leave Max on his own as they were entering dangerous territories. Despite being a huge blow to Max’s capabilities, he continued on his mission to uncover the secrets to his best friend’s death and bring justice to the silence of six. “‘We can’t do this anymore. We’re done,’ Penny said. (Myers,314) Another example would be when Victor Ignacio, who’s handle is 0MN1, had put him in the ultimatum to either turn in SH1FT, or have his family and friend threatened. Instead of giving him SH1FT, a worm that could infect all computers and devices using Panjea, he had chosen to keep it and try to modify it to make it good and then plug that into Panjea’s servers. Without perseverance, he would not have been able to make it all the way to where he was

Along with his will to persevere, he was also very intelligent. Not only was he a brilliant, hacker, his quick thinking had helped him stay away from FBI agents and being arrested. One example would be the incident at the mall, FBI had guarded all exits of the mall and were closing in on the trio of hackers, Max had come up with a genius plan. They were at level 3 where most of the agents were, they first took the stairs inside Macy’s to the 2nd floor where there was only 1 agent. He ordered Penny and Risse to take the elevator to the ground floor and wait for him in the car while he runs down the stairs, he ran down the up escalator and scraped his knees, but he made it. Without his quick thinking, Max would have been under arrest for murder.

Another case that would show his quick thinking and intelligence was when Penny and he were stuck in Panjea headquarters and had to escape. He had stuck is RFID into someone else’s clothes to make it seem like he was moving with the general crowd to the outside through the app HackerAid. But he was actually running inside to help Penny, who was trapped in a cell like room. He had freed him with an ax he had found on the way, but that was only half the plan complete. He still had to make it back to Risse’s car parked across the street without FBI agents closing in on him and shooting him down. He had split up with Penny to make sure she wasn’t in danger, then he pushed through the middle of the crowd as Panjea’s security guards were closing in on him. Once he saw a red dot on his chest, he made a beeline for the wharf and somehow made it. “Max turned and ran. He heard another pop behind him, the buzz of electricity from a stun gun, more screaming. Someone yanked on his shirt, but he pulled free.” (308)

Lastly, his curiosity had driven him through this entire adventure to uncover the secrets behind Panjea and his best friend’s death. First, he started off with exploring Evan’s house for secrets he might uncover. Once he had found Evan’s friend and he noticed he was being tracked by the FBI, he went on the run to uncover more secrets about Panjea and Evan’s death. The whole reason they had gone back to Granville and gone to Haxx0rade was that he wanted to uncover more secrets and notify the world about Panjea’s secret purpose. Curiosity was not specifically shown in an example, rather it was embedded throughout the story as the driving force for Max’s adventures.

Throughout the story, Max had changed from being a normal schoolboy to a criminal on the run to almost a celebrity by uncovering the secrets behind Panjea. He had to live on the run, wear masks, and sit behind a computer all day.  Although he did have support from DoubleThink, or Penny and Risse, Max could not have accomplished what he had done without being perseverance, intelligent, and his curiosity.

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Impact of Leonardo Da Vinci

A New Design

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