Before I familiarized myself with the type of cryptography that became popular with the rise of the information age, I was very much into what the community seems to call "classical" ciphers: Caesar shift ciphers, the Vigenère cipher, grilles, scytales, the Playfair cipher, the Enigma machine, and a few other techniques that might not qualify as ciphers. There were two kinds of ciphers, substitution and transposition (there was also a distinction between codes and ciphers), but I saw much more variety among cipher designs during that period of my life compared to after learning the classifications of information age algorithms used by modern cryptographers, like SP-networks and Feistel designs. *Sigh.* The world was much more beautiful back then.
Anyway, enough reminiscing. After understanding what a Feistel cipher—and all Feistel-like designs—is and what a substitution-permutation network is (before learning this one, I could actually see a little more variety), it seems like all I could up with were designs that fell into either category. Maybe three years ago I discovered the ARX classification and I figured that most ciphers that wound up in that those would always be Feistel-like ciphers. Later, I learned of Speck which has a really unorthodox design (no swapping of the halves after each round). I didn't think of it as a different kind of structure until I saw that the CryptoLUX article on lightweight block ciphers lists it (ARX) as one. It also lists "generalized Feistel network" and "generalized Feistel structure", but I think those can be relabeled as "Feistel-like". And looking back on Speck, it seems like it cannot be classified as either a Feistel-like cipher or an SP-network.
So, my questions are:
- Are ARX block ciphers considered there own class of block cipher separate from SPNs and Feistel-like ones?
- Are there other schemes out there besides Feistel-like designs, SPNs, and ARX?
- Or is there really nothing new under the sun?