V l l l PREFACE Implementing encryptio n scheme s i s considerably easie r wit h th e us e of the computer . Ther e ar e JavaScript programs , which ar e availabl e fro m th e webpage fo r thi s boo k an d ru n o n th e user' s computer , fo r al l th e cipher s introduced i n thi s book . Informatio n abou t thes e program s i s contained i n Chapter 24 . This book i s based o n materials tha t I use in my course, Topics in Mod - ern Math : Cipher s an d Codes , a t Loyol a Colleg e i n Maryland . Th e course , which ha s n o prerequisites, satisfie s Loyola' s cor e mathematical science s re- quirement an d i s take n primaril y b y humanitie s majors . Th e cours e wa s originally develope d i n th e earl y 1990 s wit h th e suppor t o f a Loyol a Col - lege Summer Teachin g Gran t an d wa s significantly enhance d b y a year-lon g College sabbatica l i n 1998-99 . I a m gratefu l fo r tha t support . Eac h tim e I hav e taugh t th e course , I hav e foun d way s t o improv e th e cours e materi - als usin g comment s an d suggestion s fro m m y students . I t wa s thei r voice s that I heard i n the backgroun d an d whic h I have tried t o kee p i n min d a s I prepared thi s book . I am thankful t o many peopl e who have contributed t o m y developmen t as a teacher o f mathematics. I have been fortunat e t o hav e spen t m y caree r at two institutions that valu e teaching, Hamilton Colleg e and Loyola College in Maryland. I have learned much from m y departmental colleague s a t bot h institutions. Sadly , two of the most influentia l colleagues , John T. Anderso n and Georg e Mackiw , ar e n o longe r living bot h wer e broadly-rea d mathe - maticians wh o care d deepl y abou t thei r students . I t wa s Gordo n Pritchet t who first taugh t m e ho w to writ e mathematics . Several peopl e playe d significan t role s i n th e developmen t o f thi s boo k and I a m gratefu l t o them . Joh n Hennesse y first suggeste d th e basi c ap - proach to the course, that th e "stor y line comes first," precedin g the mathe - matics. Eric a Flappan, on e of my first students a t Hamilto n an d no w a pub- lished author herself, encouraged m e to submit m y materials for publication . David Hadda d supporte d addin g thi s projec t t o m y administrativ e respon - sibilities. Edwar d Dunne , Edito r fo r th e Boo k Progra m a t th e America n Mathematical Society , mad e man y valuabl e suggestion s a s well a s provide d general encouragement. Emili e Kulis read the entire manuscript, worke d th e exercises, checked the computer programs , made many excellent suggestion s for improvement , an d assiste d m e in so many other ways , going well beyond her responsibilitie s a s m y executiv e administrativ e assistant . I coul d no t have complete d th e projec t o n tim e withou t he r help . Finally , m y wonder - ful husban d Davi d gav e m e hi s unwaverin g suppor t an d encouragemen t al l along th e way , a s he alway s does .
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