So this is the infamous keyed-columnar route-transposition method.
See it at Gary Phillips Realm of Twelve Site:
I basically took screenshots of his animation so really, go see his site. Spend some time there, click on all the links, make a donation or something. It’s one thing to see a description of a cipher solution but it’s quite another to watch it happen.
Remember, I didn’t make these.
I’m just showing them on my site so you can see this method because I’m too lazy to re-do all the 336 letters in columns etc. etc.
Here we go.
Pad it out:
when it’s done…
Next is the keyed-columnar (as rows):
when it’s done…
Finish it off with a route transposition:
Work in progress…
And you’re done! Sort of…
Here’s Gary’s excellent scroll of the result.
So by this method you can see that the “?” is left out of the transposition because it doesn’t allow a proper gridding of the K3 text. With it we have 337 letters but without it we have 336 and can grid out a 7×48 grid.
This would be part of the argument for “?” being part of K4.
If all I had was this method I would still be skeptical because it would leave the last sentence of K3 without punctuation.
How does this compare to Solution One?
Well, if #1 uses every 192nd letter and #2 uses column lengths of 48, then you can see that 4×48=192 which implies the connection. There are other people who could show the parallels between the two better than I can so I’ll leave it up to the rest of you to figure it out. I’m no mathematician and I’m no expert but I guess you could make the argument that due to the methods used to encipher K3, it lends itself readily to a variety of decryption efforts. This may be intentional or accidental, I don’t know. Probably the number of letters, the number of columns and the key used would be the influencing factors.
At least we know they work, that’s what matters, at least we know they work.
p.s. Did I mention the images are from someone else’s animation?