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Author Topic: 3 letter acronym - Off Topic  (Read 1897 times)
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peteracs
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« on: 09 February, 2015, 05:59:30 PM »

Hi All

Earlier today I was online exchanging messages via AOL instant messaging system which a number of suppliers in the computer parts business use a lot. I asked the guy to check a part availability for me and he replied 'lmc' which amused me as I had never seen it written like that before, he meant 'let me check'. Apart from another meaning for LMC, I was amused as this was coming from a Frenchman who lives in Holland......

Well it brightened my day anyway.

Peter

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Parisien
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« Reply #1 on: 09 February, 2015, 06:43:11 PM »

.....hhhhmmmmm........LMC = Let me check...............basically hes just a ...........LT = lazy typer.............

 Grin

P
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Frank Gallagher
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« Reply #2 on: 09 February, 2015, 10:59:28 PM »

That's instant messaging and text speak - but I'm sure it happened with morse code too Smiley

my usual message sign off is NP
= no problem !

Steve
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Steve Pilgrim
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« Reply #3 on: 10 February, 2015, 01:52:42 PM »

I vaguely recall hearing that a German lazy typer assisted in breaking the Enigma code in World War 2.

It seems a long coded message was transmitted and, whilst not received by the intended German recipient, was received at Bletchley Park. An instruction was sent by the intended recipient to transmit the message again. The lowly communications guy, the lazy typer, decided that in sending it again he would use abbreviations where possible and accordingly re-sent the message. Bletchley Park also picked up the second message and  comparison of the two versions of the same message provided clues as to the manner in which Enigma worked. The rest is, as they say, history.

..... and the the lesson is, do not use abbreviations!!!

                                      TTFN Andy
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« Reply #4 on: 10 February, 2015, 06:34:44 PM »

A well known lesson Andy........loose typing costs lives............

P
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Frank Gallagher
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« Reply #5 on: 11 February, 2015, 09:58:26 AM »

I read a similar story about the lazy Germans and the Enigma machine. Each morning they were supposed to change the rotors then send out a message to confirm with other stations. More often then not, being like any soldier wanting an easy life, they didn't change the rotors and the team at Bletchley reckoned they'd go for a lazy test word too - like 'Hitler'. Sure enough.....................
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« Reply #6 on: 11 February, 2015, 12:29:44 PM »

They also used to start the day with the weather forecast. So you always knew that the first message would be titled "Here is the weather forecast for ..."

... but don't be too complacent - we may encrypt our emails these days ( or rather our email programs do ) but how many end with the same signature ( especially company emails ) ...
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« Reply #7 on: 15 February, 2015, 07:10:17 PM »

On the subject of Enigma, there were more rotors to choose from than fitted in the machine at any one time and the rotors for the day had to be the right ones, in the right order with each one set to the right starting point. Each rotor had an internal wiring pattern which was known from the captured machine and at each key depression the rotors advanced like a trip counter in a speedometer. Thus if you got exactly the same message twice in a row you could work back through the wiring to get the day's rotor order and start position.

My uncle was a Mosquito navigator in the RAF during the war and he has complained about pointless missions to drop mines in the Kiel ship canal. The Germans just came straight out and cleared them. I read recently that, being disciplined and orderly people the harbour master reported the mines in a standard format. Dropping the mines was pointless from the point of view of blowing up shipping but it generated the key to that day's settings for that part of the communications network.

The bombe machines and eventually the Colossus computer were used to churn through all the available combinations till they came up with the right answer.

All very clever stuff.

Frank

 
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the.cern
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« Reply #8 on: 15 February, 2015, 09:48:19 PM »

Frank, thank you for that. It is incredible what went on in those awful years.

                               Andy
 
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chriswgawne
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« Reply #9 on: 15 February, 2015, 11:34:38 PM »

Bletchley Park is well worth a visit to get a greater understanding of the valuable work done there. I took my daughter in law who was fascinated. The house itself is also interesting as to my mind the proportions are all wrong and the architect got confused with different styles trying to appease the first owner.
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Chris Gawne
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« Reply #10 on: 16 February, 2015, 12:43:26 AM »

Bletchley Park is well worth a visit to get a greater understanding of the valuable work done there. I took my daughter in law who was fascinated. The house itself is also interesting as to my mind the proportions are all wrong and the architect got confused with different styles trying to appease the first owner.

Yes,
We  went a couple of years ago and it was well worth the visit, however since we went it seems a new person has taken charge and decided to get rid of the volunteer guides who were very knowledgeable!

Brian
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« Reply #11 on: 16 February, 2015, 10:59:28 AM »

It wasn't until very recent years that any of them even spoke about it and books began to appear because they had signed the Official Secrets Act and to them that was that. Very different from todays leaks all over the place. I think it was in the final episode of Foyle set in the 50's that people were openly talking about who worked for the SOE etc. It just wouldn't have happened at that time. I think it was the 90's before the public had any idea what had been happening at Bletchley. I can recommend 'Between Silk and Cyanide' by Leo Marks about life at the SOE. Mind boggling stuff went on and I'm always grateful there are people around at the right time with bigger brains than me.
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« Reply #12 on: 16 February, 2015, 12:20:24 PM »

Thank-you for that Frank , really interesting 'bigger picture' story
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Steve Pilgrim
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« Reply #13 on: 20 February, 2015, 10:53:42 PM »

Of course SOE and Bletchley Park are two quite different things. Bletchley was a spin off from the code and ciphers school whereas SOE were concerned with direct operations in occupied Europe.

My office was actually involved in valuing Bletchley Park in the eighties when it was one of the Post Office Telephones training centres. We didn't have any idea of it's history then. I also valued a minor country house west of Bletchley and remember being bemused by a wing of curiously civil service standard accommodation at the rear beside the stable yard. Only many years later did I find out it was one of the outlying listening posts for Bletchley Park.

This is a fascinating period of history because information about it is still now being revealed.

Frank
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« Reply #14 on: 21 February, 2015, 04:49:26 PM »

Yes, one thing reminded me of another in my post and I didn't mean to suggest SOE were involved at Bletchley. As you say, SOE were quite separate and were based in Baker Street. I find all of it fascinating.
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