16 Solving ciphers with hill climbing

Many of the encryption methods introduced in this book can be broken with a strategy called hill climbing. Computer scientists developed this technique to solve certain kinds of optimization problems, most of which are not crypto related. It is well suited, for instance, to finding the shortest route that includes certain cities or determining the most efficient configuration of a production facility. The method is named “hill climbing” because it aims to improve a given configuration iteratively, until the “top of the mountain” is reached and no further improvement is possible, as represented in Figure ...

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