The 2019 Alan Turing Cryptography Competition is now in its 7th year! It’s an online competition run by the University’s School of Mathematics. Every one to two weeks a new chapter of the story is released and there are six chapters in total. Each chapter has a new cryptographic puzzle to solve. The team (one to four people) that solves the chapter’s puzzle the fastest wins a prize, but there will also be up to ten ‘spot prizes’ for every chapter chosen at random from teams who submit the correct answers!
The prizes have been sponsored by the travel search company Skyscanner. Two of the three founders of Skyscanner were former computer scientists from The University of Manchester – two people who directly benefitted from Turing’s contributions to Manchester and computing. At the end of the competition we will host the Alan Turing Cryptography Day on Wednesday, 1 May 2019 with everything from a live cryptography challenge to a prize ceremony for the competition winners. It’s not to be missed!
For older sixth form pupils, there is the 2019 MathsBombe! This is an online competition, with two mathematical puzzles being released every fortnight. With four sets of puzzles in total, participants will be competing against other students from across the UK. The puzzles will be quirky, fun and cover the full spectrum of Mathematics; they will not be directly related to the A-Level syllabus and will be unlike problems in, say, the UKMT. Instead, students will need to use their problem-solving skills and be able to ‘think outside the box’ – valuable skills for students going on to study STEM subjects at university. MathsBombe is supported by the Dame Kathleen Ollerenshaw Trust.
The Alan Turing Cryptography Competition begins on Monday, 28 January 2019, with MathsBombe starting on Wednesday, 30 January 2019.