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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Number Theory and Cryptography by University of California San Diego

4.5
stars
536 ratings

About the Course

A prominent expert in the number theory Godfrey Hardy described it in the beginning of 20th century as one of the most obviously useless branches of Pure Mathematics”. Just 30 years after his death, an algorithm for encryption of secret messages was developed using achievements of number theory. It was called RSA after the names of its authors, and its implementation is probably the most frequently used computer program in the world nowadays. Without it, nobody would be able to make secure payments over the internet, or even log in securely to e-mail and other personal services. In this course we will start with the basics of the number theory and get to cryptographic protocols based on it. By the end, you will be able to apply the basics of the number theory to encrypt and decrypt messages, and to break the code if one applies RSA carelessly. You will even pass a cryptographic quest! As prerequisites we assume only basic math (e.g., we expect you to know what is a square or how to add fractions), basic programming in python (functions, loops, recursion), common sense and curiosity. Our intended audience are all people that work or plan to work in IT, starting from motivated high school students....

Top reviews

SS

Jul 31, 2020

I loved this course! It is unlike any I have taken before. All courses in this specialization have always included fun activities to make the taught content fun and understandable.

PW

Nov 21, 2018

I was really impressed especially with the RSA portion of the course. It was really well explained, and the programming exercise was cleverly designed and implemented. Well done.

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