Big Brother is Watching You, My Science Fair Project 1999-2000
I was going through boxes that I had in my dad's attic the other week and found a lot of my papers from my junior and senior years of high school. Final papers for English, Calculus AB/BC notebooks, and this - my senior year science fair project. "Big Brother is Watching You" is what I titled it - LOL. All about encryption, I really wish I knew where I got the idea to do this project from! Though I for sure know the book that I got, once I had the idea. It's there in my bibliography. Applied Cryptography, 2nd Edition, by Bruce Schneier. The big red book.
Honestly, it kinda blows my mind that I did this, I hardly even remember doing it. I think since I had already taken every Computer Science AP class and essentially had my own unlisted CompSci AP class, I was allowed to work on this project as the only real work I had to do for that class. I completely forgot though how I had learned it that year, and all the time I spent on the C++ code that I created for it. (though the code is probably not that great in retrospect!) But yeah, this project is why, when the Snowden stuff happened, I remember being very confused by everyone's reactions. I thought it was common knowledge. I even said that to people, and they probably thought I was just being some weird wannabe-know-it-all computer nerd. But I mean I wrote about it in 1999 and it's all right here - I mention the NSA specifically. I mean, I guess it was just speculation, I wasn't going to bet my life on it or anything- well, actually, I probably would have if the reward had been substantial enough.
So yeah this has most of the project. The C++ code that I wrote, I have it all, it's all on paper- I had printed it to bring to the science fair. Thankfully, because I certainly don't have the files themselves anymore. But personally I think I did some weird boneheaded stuff in the code, I don't know what I was thinking, but I mean I did just learn this stuff that year. It's hard for me to read stuff I wrote so long ago and not cringe a little, but that's okay, I'm still going to post it. Right now it's just the images from my scans, but I guess I can make it actual text at some point. And I didn't scan all of the C++ code, one day I can do that, too.
Please remember I was only 17 when I wrote this stuff, Y2K hadn't even happened yet when I did a lot of this- LOL!