RE: Contemporary knowledge of the ms
byatan > 17-07-2021, 09:14 AM
Rather than give more complete distributions, because that would take longer, I'll come up with boundaries and a guess at the median. Conceivable upper bounds can be much higher under improbable scenarios. The assumption for all of these is that the ms text contains enciphered information.
1a) 1 to 1000. Median, 10 or fewer.
1b) Within a scale factor of 2 of 1a.
Why: These things could be on a need to know basis. Under many arrangements only a subset of those who access the information would need to know.
2a) 1 to 10,000. Median, 100 or fewer.
2b) Extrapolate from 1b.
Why: Why go to all the trouble to protect the information if it's for a wide audience?
3a) 0 to 40,000. Median, 200 or fewer.
3b) Extrapolate from 1b.
Why: This should not be much higher than 2 unless the audience is bad at keeping secrets (probability unknown, but reasonable).
4) 1 to 10. Median, <2. Full ciphertext copy only qualifies.
Why: Secret, difficult, expensive to copy.
5) 0 to 10,000. Median, dozens. Ciphertext or plaintext partial copies qualify, even if the latter are generic, as long as they come from the ms.
Why: Depending on what qualifies as a partial copy, it's easy to imagine either very many or very few.