The Enigma machines made their debut in short-lived peace, just following the first Great War. Enclosed in foldable wooden boxes, the devices featured series of protruding knobs and keys, resembling a cross between an antique typewriter and a laptop computer. These were among the first ciphers, boxes capable of coding and decoding staggeringly complex communications. German electrical engineer Arthur Scherbius invented the Enigma machines in 1918, believing the banking industry would find them useful. He would find, however, the devices were too far ahead of their time.