Caesar Cipher
This page was last reviewed on Jul 3, 2023.
Dot Net Perls
Caesar cipher. A cipher obscures text. In the Caesar cipher, letters are shifted by a specified number of places in the alphabet. We reverse this by shifting each letter back.
Strings are immutable. So we cannot change their letters directly—instead, we can convert them to a character array. And then, for each letter in it, we apply the shifting logic.
Caesar method. This accepts a String, and an int that indicates how many places each character is to be shifted. It handles out-of-range characters by subtracting, or adding, 26.
Start We convert the String to a char array. This is a mutable data structure: an element can be changed.
char Array
Return We return a String by converting the char array into one. We use the String constructor.
public class Program { static String caesar(String value, int shift) { // Convert to char array. char[] buffer = value.toCharArray(); // Loop over characters. for (int i = 0; i < buffer.length; i++) { // Shift letter, moving back or forward 26 places if needed. char letter = buffer[i]; letter = (char) (letter + shift); if (letter > 'z') { letter = (char) (letter - 26); } else if (letter < 'a') { letter = (char) (letter + 26); } buffer[i] = letter; } // Return final string. return new String(buffer); } public static void main(String[] args) { // Test the cipher method. String a = "test"; System.out.println(a); System.out.println(); String b = caesar(a, 18); String c = caesar(b, -18); System.out.println(b); System.out.println(c); System.out.println(); String d = caesar(a, 1); String e = caesar(d, -1); System.out.println(d); System.out.println(e); System.out.println(); String f = "exxegoexsrgi"; String g = caesar(f, -4); System.out.println(f); System.out.println(g); } }
test lwkl test uftu test exxegoexsrgi attackatonce
In testing, the caesar() method correctly converted the Strings. It converted the String "test" to "lwkl." And then it round-tripped the conversion.
So For Strings with just ASCII letters, the method appears to be correct. Other values are not tested here.
ROT13. The Caesar cipher is nearly the same as ROT13, except with Caesar, we do not rotate just 13 characters. We must additionally know (or decipher) the "offset" or "shift" value.
Espionage is part of human civilization. Even in 40 BC, messages were being intercepted. The Caesar cipher, unlike modern systems, is easy to break—given the right knowledge.
Dot Net Perls is a collection of tested code examples. Pages are continually updated to stay current, with code correctness a top priority.
Sam Allen is passionate about computer languages. In the past, his work has been recommended by Apple and Microsoft and he has studied computers at a selective university in the United States.
This page was last updated on Jul 3, 2023 (edit).
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