Algorithmic Gladiators Vie for Digital Glory

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Science  19 May 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5469, pp. 1161-1163
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5469.1161

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For 2 years, cryptographers from across the globe have been cracking one another's ciphers, trying to establish their own algorithms as the new standard in encryption. In mid-April the five finalist teams subjected each other's algorithms to repeated cryptographic attacks, while judges observed the melee. But as the smoke cleared, the contestants found themselves facing a menace from a new and unexpected quarter: the realm of patent law.