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I was just wondering if a cipher existed where a number of symbols were colored with different colors forming a cipher?

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    $\begingroup$ That's merely a question of representation, so you can basically do this with all ciphers that operate on raw data. $\endgroup$ – SEJPM Feb 8 '17 at 17:19
  • $\begingroup$ What research have you done? I'm asking because sharing research efforts helps everyone! Tell us what research you did, what you found, and why it didn’t meet your needs. That shows users you took time trying to help yourself, it saves us from reiterating obvious answers, and (most important) it helps you to get more relevant on-point answers. In case of doubt, you can start by searching this site for related Q&As that might shed light on your question. At worst it will help you frame “a better question”; at best it might even answer it. $\endgroup$ – e-sushi Feb 9 '17 at 4:07
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Something that may interest you would be a secret sharing scheme by Shamir titled Visual Cryptography.

http://www.cs.nccu.edu.tw/~raylin/UndergraduateCourse/ComtenporaryCryptography/Spring2009/VisualCrypto.pdf

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I haven't seen any such implementation of a cipher. That being said, you could implement it yourself. If you take each byte in a cyphertext and put them into a bitmap, you can display each "letter" as a pixel. Remember, a byte consists of 8 bits, which can represent a number between 0 and 255. Which is one of the most common amount of colors a pixel can hold.

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  • $\begingroup$ From my experience, "the most common amount of colors" would be represented as RGB which holds 3 bytes per pixel (red value, green value, and blue value) and not 1 byte as you stated. What you describe would result in a grey-scaled or a custom 256-color-table image format as it was commonly used around and about two and a half decades ago. $\endgroup$ – e-sushi Feb 9 '17 at 12:16
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I was just wondering if a cipher existed where a number of symbols were colored with different colors forming a cipher?

What you describe is not related to cryptography, but practically boils down to a form of encoding a ciphertext.

Cryptographically secure ciphers tend to programmatically output a series of bytes. How you handle and represent those bytes is up to you. Most of the time you'll see binary blobs (read: data packages like files) or - for example when using GnuPG/PGP in emails - somewhat long HEX strings.

So, to answer your question directly: since "encoding" is something completely different than "encryption" and since "encoding" does not add any security, you will not find any cryptographically secure cipher which natively produces an output "where a number of symbols were colored with different colors forming a cipher".

At its best, yet totally insecure for cryptographic use, your idea would result in a kind of (monoalphabetic) substitution cipher; also known as pigpen cipher.

By the way…

Related to your question, you might also want to check on the Q&A "Are specially designed fonts sometimes used in cryptography?" as it comes pretty close to what you are thinking about. To keep this answer short, I'll simply refrain from repeating the same infos which I already provided in my answer there.

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