Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Book Review: Secret History: the Story of Cryptology

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the read-all-about-it dept.

Books 71

benrothke writes "Narrating a compelling and interesting story about cryptography is not an easy endeavor. Many authors have tried and failed miserably; attempting to create better anecdotes about the adventure of Alice and Bob. David Kahn probably did the best job of it when wrote The Codebreakers: The story of secret writing in 1967 and set the gold standard on the information security narrative. Kahn's book was so provocative and groundbreaking that the US Government originally censored many parts of it. While Secret History: The Story of Cryptology is not as groundbreaking, it also has no government censorship. With that, the book is fascinating read that provides a combination of cryptographic history and the underlying mathematics behind it." Keep reading for the rest of Ben's review.As a preface; the book has cryptology in its title, which is for the most part synonymous with cryptography. Since cryptography is more commonly used, I'll use it in this review.

Kahn himself wrote that he felt this book is by far the clearest and most comprehensive of the books dealing with the modern era of cryptography including classic ciphers and some of the important historical ones such as Enigma and Purple; but also newer systems such as AES and public-key cryptography.

The book claims that the mathematics detailed in it are accessible requiring minimal mathematical prerequisites. But the reality is that is does require at least a college level understanding, including algebra, calculus and more.

As an aside, nearly every book on encryption and cryptography that claims no advanced mathematical knowledge is needed doesn't meet that claim. With that, Bauer does a good job of separating the two narratives in the book (cryptography and history), so one who is not comfortable with the high-level math can easily parse through those sections.

Bauer brings an extensive pedigree to the book, as he is a former scholar-in-residence at the NSA Center for Cryptologic History. While Bauer has a Ph.D. in mathematics, that does not take away from his ability as an excellent story teller. And let's face it; telling the story of cryptography in a compelling and readable manner is not an easy task.

The 20 chapters in the book follow a chronological development of encryption and cryptography; from Roman times to current times. Each chapter has a set of exercises that can be accessed here. Besides being extremely well-researched, each chapter has numerous items for further reading and research.

Chapters 1-9 are focused on classical cryptology, with topics ranging from the Caesar cipher, Biblical cryptology, to a history of the Vigenère cipher, the ciphers of WW1 and WW2 and more.

In chapter 8 World War II: The Enigma of Germany, Bauer does a great job of detailing how the Enigma machine worked, including details regarding the cryptanalysis of the device, both in its rotor wirings and how recovering its daily keys ultimately lead to is being broken. The chapter also asked the question: what if Enigma had never been broken,and provides a provocative answer to that.

Chapter 8 opens with the famous quote from Ben Franklin that "three may keep a secret if two of them are dead". He notes that the best counterexample to that is of the 10,000 people that were involved in the project to break the Enigma. They all were able to maintain their silence about the project for decades; which clearly shows that large groups can indeed keep a secret. Bauer notes that it is often a reaction to conspiracy theories that large groups of people could never keep a secret for so long.

Chapter 9 provides a fascinating account of the Navajo code talkers. These were a group of Navajo Indians who were specially recruited during World War II by the Marines to serve in their communications units. Since the Navajo language was unknown to the Axis powers; it ensured that all communications were kept completely secret.

While part 1 is quite interesting; part 2, chapters 10-20 focuses on modern cryptology and is even more fascinating. Bauer does a fantastic job of encapsulating the last 60 years of cryptography, and covers everything from the origins of the NSA, the development of DES and AES, public key cryptography and much more.

The book was printed in March 2013 just before the NSA PRISM surveillance program became public knowledge. If there is any significant mistake in the book, it is in chapter 11 where Bauer writes that "everything I've seen and heard at the NSA has convinced me that the respect for the Constitution is a key component of the culture there".

Aside from the incorrect observation about how the NSA treats the Constitution, the book does an excellent job of integrating both the history of cryptography and the mathematical element. For those that aren't interested in to the mathematics, there is plenty of narrative in the book to keep them reading.

For those looking for a comprehensive and decipherable text on the history of cryptography, this is one of the best on the topic in many years.

Kahn's book laid the groundwork that made a book like this possible and Secret History: The Story of Cryptology is a worthy follow-up to that legendary text.

Reviewed by Ben Rothke

cancel ×

71 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Oh sure, tell everybody (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45145925)

Post about it on Slashdot. Put it in a book, why don't you?

Re:Oh sure, tell everybody (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45145961)

Meaning what?

GRAMAHR (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45145963)

"The book claims that the mathematics detailed in it are accessible requiring minimal mathematical prerequisites. But the reality is that is does require at least a college level understanding, including algebra, calculus and more. "

Also a middle school level English.

Alice and Bob (5, Funny)

Moblaster (521614) | about a year ago | (#45145969)

Alice locks her signed copy of the book in the chest with her lock. She sends the chest to Bob. He slaps his lock on it. And send the chest back to Alice. She correctly interprets this as a big FU from Bob and takes a chainsaw to open up the chest and get her damn book back since he obviously doesn't want it.

Re:Alice and Bob (1)

Steve_Ussler (2941703) | about a year ago | (#45146053)

That might be the funniest comment ever!!!! :)

Re:Alice and Bob (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146489)

Alice and Bob work for NSA yo!

Re:Alice and Bob (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year ago | (#45150911)

Alice and Bob work for NSA yo!

I'm not worried about them ... but I hear that Eve works there too.

Re: Alice and Bob (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45155483)

We KNOW Eve works there. I'm worried that Trent might work there too.

Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time Pad (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146087)

I repeat, One Time Pad. Learn it, Use it. Love it.

Trade terabyte harddrives filled with noise with your friends and enjoy 100% perfect forward secrecy.

When you run out of pad, go meet in person and trade another drive after you confirm privacy.

One time pad is best for situations where you can get 100% private with someone, but have to leave that privacy later and still need to speak with them privately.

The NSA revelations tells me that all running key algorithms are dead. I prefer any key being allowed to decrypt any message from my ciphertext. with running key, only one output looks legible, and the others are all gibberish. Thus they can work and slowly attack your crypto using known plaintext attacks and such.

If you write "BAD THING A" they will decrypt various "tries" and get "SADFSAFSADF" or "SAFDFDBERTGSD" or "BAD THING A". Looks obvious when you find the right answer.

With one time pad. Your key is as long as the message so changing the decryption key only changes that one letter. So any possible key could be made to make any possible message. The key "ABC" could decrypt to "KILL EVERYONE" or the key "ZYX" could decrypt the same message to say "SAVE CHILDREN". Harder to know when you've got the right key.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146193)

They'll bust the door in, confiscate those terabytes of OTPs and decrypt everything you've ever sent. Besides, you'll make the OTPs wrong and then accidentally reuse them.

So you can repeat your One Time Pad mantra all you want. It won't work.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (2)

TheCarp (96830) | about a year ago | (#45146329)

Not defending this obvious idiocy but, simply overwriting the pad blocks as you use them easily prevents both reuse, and confiscation as a means to decrypt previous messages. Of course, it does mean that you have to either save those messages in some other manner, or live with having them be "read once".

That said, I don't think its really the case that all stream ciphers are totally broken and not trustable. Nor do I expect that will be the case. The lavabit debacle indicates that the encryption itself is likely still good, or else, why bother trying to force key shenanigans?

If they really could break it, they already have the data, then the only reason is counter intelligence, which would more easily be served by using a paralell construction to get the same information without tipping their hand that they can read the encrypted messages.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#45146593)

That said, I don't think its really the case that all stream ciphers are totally broken and not trustable. Nor do I expect that will be the case. The lavabit debacle indicates that the encryption itself is likely still good, or else, why bother trying to force key shenanigans?

There's several problems with these statements. First, there's no evidence that stream ciphers as an aggregate group are significantly less secure than block ciphers. You shouldn't have to 'expect' this to be the case -- the GP has failed to provide evidence for his claim, and there are studies and evidence to support yours that is common knowledge: Much of the internet is built on stream ciphers, and while particular implimentations have been shown to be faulty, few cryptography analysts have made the statement that they are, as a group, less secure.

However, suggesting that the government "trying to force key shenanigans" is not evidence one way or the other. This is a post hoc, ergo propter hoc fallacy. There may be no relation at all between the government's actions, and the strength of the cryptographic system! In fact, an argument can be made that the government should engage in "shenanigans" even if they possess a low-cost decryption/key recovery method, and can then use plausible deniability when they claim something other than this secret method was used to get the information.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

djmurdoch (306849) | about a year ago | (#45146873)

So instead of busting the door in, you just pick the lock, copy the drive, and you're able to decrypt all future messages. I'd guess the NSA would prefer to be able to decrypt all future messages over being able to decrypt all past messages.

Door failure runs rampant (1)

John.Banister (1291556) | about a year ago | (#45149717)

I keep hearing about how they'll but the door in. Doesn't anyone make decent doors anymore?

Re:Door failure runs rampant (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year ago | (#45150915)

I keep hearing about how they'll but the door in. Doesn't anyone make decent doors anymore?

yes [businessinsider.com]

Re:Door failure runs rampant (1)

John.Banister (1291556) | about 10 months ago | (#45155729)

I think I might need a motor on it if I had my hands full of groceries. Thanks for the link.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Ami Ganguli (921) | about a year ago | (#45146223)

I always thought it would be interesting to try to create "perfect" compression of English (or any language, really). You create an encoding such that every possible message is a semantically and grammatically correct message. Then each and every decrypted message is equally valid.

Of course, this goal is impossible, but I bet we could get reasonably close. Close enough that a human would be required to check each decrypted message, making brute force attacks unrealistic.

A one time pad is simpler, of course, but where's the fun in that?

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | about a year ago | (#45146527)

The problem is that sentences rarely occur in isolation, making encryption harder and harder if you want a bijective mapping to *texts* that make sense. In fact, at some time in a context there might not be enough texts that make sense to encrypt to unless you're willing to introduce a lot of redundancy.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | about a year ago | (#45146609)

Ideally you'd combine the two tactics.

I actually don't think that's so impossible; you just need to rely as heavily as possible on context and put all sentences into a normalized form. English is a bit lame for this, but it should be trivial to do in a Lojban-like language that avoids all particles. As a trivial example: number all verbs and number all nouns separately. If a verb is transitive, then the next two numbers are its nouns, if not, then the next number is its subject and the number after that is the beginning of the next sentence. Have different numbers for verbs and nouns that take different numbers of dependents, for example the transitive and intransitive verbs of 'walk', or versions with or without destination clauses.

This might be trivially crackable on its own by using word-frequency analysis (low likelihood of a noun and verb with the same number both being used frequently, although ideally you'd design the dictionary to encourage this kind of confusion), but absolutely impossible to guarantee correct plaintext through brute forcing a very long XOR key.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45150775)

I always thought it would be interesting to try to create "perfect" compression of English (or any language, really).

Indeed, it would be interesting. "Perfect" compression of English would mean artificial intelligence and a large body of knowledge because only if you understand the text, you can give halfway accurate probabilities for what comes next. And a good estimate for the probability is the key to good compression.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year ago | (#45151577)

...because only if you understand the text, you can give halfway accurate probabilities for what comes next.

Browning turned to the lady saying: "Madam, when those lines were written two knew their meaning, God and Browning. Now only God Knows.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | about a year ago | (#45146393)

I repeat, One Time Pad.

I loled. Golf clap.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Steve_Ussler (2941703) | about a year ago | (#45146467)

What software is available for consumers to use one time pads?

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Panaflex (13191) | about a year ago | (#45147547)

Use /dev/random and Monolith... dd from random into a file the same size as your cleartext, use Monolith to xor the files into a third file, secured file. The random file is essentially your key, so it must be kept separate from your secured file to be safe.

http://monolith.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Steve_Ussler (2941703) | about 10 months ago | (#45154657)

Great...thanks!

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (4, Interesting)

Hatta (162192) | about a year ago | (#45146649)

The math behind public key encryption is still secure. When PKI fails, it is due to bad key management. OTP has the same problem, pad management. The beauty of public key encryption is that it doesn't matter who eavesdrops on your public key, you don't have to prearrange anything with anyone. OTP does not have the same advantages, and keeping your pad secure is every bit as difficult as keeping your private key secure.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#45146869)

I repeat, One Time Pad. Learn it, Use it. Love it.

Trade terabyte harddrives filled with noise with your friends and enjoy 100% perfect forward secrecy.

Mr. Anderson, what good will terrabytes of random pads do if you have no secure operating systems with which to use them?

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year ago | (#45146943)

Sure that's such a good idea? Look at your last example: if their goal is to frame you, there are LOTS of keys which can be used to make you say incriminating things. Since the key is only used one time and should be random, they can easily falsify a key and then what is your defence? Providing your own key says nothing; you could've falsified it too. Most judges don't know anything about crypto, so you'd have to make a case for it, assuming you're given the chance. OTP is very useful when the goal is to hide information you don't want others to find, not so much when others aren't looking for anything in particular. Contrast with, say, AES; good luck finding a key which, when applied to encrypted data using another key, generates a legible message, let alone an incriminating one.

Re:Running key is dead... Long Live the One Time P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45148291)

The average user could NEVER manage keys.

What we all want to know (2)

John Jorsett (171560) | about a year ago | (#45146169)

Which chapters have the embedded NSA trapdoors?

Re:What we all want to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146269)

It's on page fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii....
*splthunk*

Looks interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146219)

although pretty expensive for a digital copy I must say.

Re:Looks interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146553)

I think CRC sells mainly to the academic crowd and the academic books are always son the expensive side.

But yeah, I would expect more of a discount for a digital copy.

Singh's "The Code Book" is very good (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146347)

Highly recommended for the history part, not so much the math. But it's very well written.

Amazon link [amazon.com]

Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146387)

Review should read:

5/10, too derivative: I liked it better when it was called "Cryptonomicon".

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146601)

Cryptonomicon is a classic!

But again, it is fction.

This title is non-fiction.

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146647)

Cryptonomicon is a classic!

But again, it is fction.

This title is non-fiction.

Bullshit. The service record of Lawrence Waterhouse was simply encrypted too heavily to ever be recovered. That all happened, for reals.

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45147805)

All the masturbation, blow jobs from German spies, and casual visits to whore houses? Mostly what I remember about that book was all the masturbation, and something about cap'n crunch.

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (1)

airdweller (1816958) | about 10 months ago | (#45157399)

"All the masturbation, blow jobs from German spies, and casual visits to whore houses? Mostly what I remember about that book was all the masturbation, and something about cap'n crunch."
People tend to remember what's important for them.

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (1)

Willuz (1246698) | about a year ago | (#45146615)

Agreed. Neal Stephenson already fully covered the birth and development of encryption in simple terms for the non-mathematician.

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45147451)

what about for the post-doc in mathamatics?

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about a year ago | (#45149271)

A spelling book?

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (1)

Steve_Ussler (2941703) | about a year ago | (#45147033)

Why would Slashdot advertise for Amazon?

Re:Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.co (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45147337)

::Another inflated slashvertisement for amazon.com

what is that supposed to mean?

Oblig Xkcd (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45146419)

http://xkcd.com/177/

The NSA (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#45146453)

Bauer writes that "everything I've seen and heard at the NSA has convinced me that the respect for the Constitution is a key component of the culture there". Aside from the incorrect observation about how the NSA treats the Constitution...

There's no reason to suggest the NSA has any less respect for the Constitution now than it did at time of publication. Culture does not change that quickly in an organization; the "big reveal" of Snowden, et al., may be changing our perception of the NSA and our culture, but I see no reason to believe it has changed the NSA's internal culture significantly. Especially when you consider one of the NSA's central tenets is to assume that all its systems are already compromised. For them, this would simply be evidence in support of the prevailing opinion there.

Much of this radical expansion of surveillance of the internet and telecommunications wasn't initiated internally, but instead by external political pressures. The NSA is still a support agency, and its mandate is to assist the FBI, CIA, DHS, and other law enforcement agencies with their own intelligence needs. The NSA does not have a mandate to pursue things on its own initiative.

Much of this expansion started under the Bush Administration and has continued under Obama -- the changes in the NSA's operational budget and goals is directly tied to changes in political atmosphere. It would be intellectually dishonest to suggest the NSA is responsible for this; They are not the initiators of these activities, they are merely providing the service requested. This is akin to suggesting that tech support broke your computer when you call in... the NSA didn't "break" the Constitution, or the internet, etc. They're just the people executing the orders they're given.

It's not the NSA that is disrespecting the Constitution, but the people using the NSA. Directly, that's the FBI, CIA, DHS, and other major agencies they serve. And in turn, those agencies are following the mandates issued by their executive staff, which in turn reports directly to the President and to Congress.

If we're going to point fingers, point them at the source, not the destination. It is entirely possible to have respect for a thing, while simultaniously being forced into actions which are disrespectful to it. Examples like Snowden's defection demonstrate there is at least some dissent amongst the rank and file within the organization as to the legitimacy of these demands.

You may recall the KGB had similar defections throughout the Cold War, most notably Vasili Mitrokhin, the head librarian of the KGB and a pre-computerization counterpart to Snowden. The Mitrokhin Archive was a major intelligence coup for the United States, and it happened for very similar reasons to Snowden's defection: Disagreement with the leadership over the legitimacy of external political demands, and the leadership trying to meet those demands instead of resisting them.

That's all very well, but.. (1)

DigitAl56K (805623) | about a year ago | (#45146469)

.. the history aside, a far bigger, immediate and very real problem is that the vast majority of people don't even understand why they ought to care more about secrecy, partly because they are either unaware of where their communications are being intercepted, by whom, and then even more complex, how the data can and is being analyzed today and for what purpose, and even when it isn't being analyzed today for purposes that may concern them, the permanency of that data and the possibility of tomorrows uses.

We assume that because we as technically minded people can grasp the possibilities, others can too. I think that's very much not the case.

Similar to Cryptography Decrypted by Mel and Baker (1)

Coop (9778) | about a year ago | (#45146487)

I really enjoyed Cryptography Decrypted [amazon.com] which takes a similar history-based approach. It's shorter and written in an entertaining way.

Re:Similar to Cryptography Decrypted by Mel and Ba (1)

Steve_Ussler (2941703) | about a year ago | (#45146535)

Sounds interesting...but it is 13 yrs old.

Of course (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45147095)

... it is published by *CRC* pres

Re:Of course (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45148313)

what does that mean?

Re:Of course (1)

myowntrueself (607117) | about a year ago | (#45151113)

what does that mean?

(Invisible) College of the Rosy Cross?

Wait, are we talking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45147485)

cryptology or cryptography?

Re:Wait, are we talking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45148075)

Read the review...it clarified that.

Re: Wait, are we talking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45148591)

No, the review called them synonyms. They are not. Cryptography is the science of secret writing, enabling transmission of hidden messages. Cryptanalysis is the practice of breaking cryptic systems. Cryptology is the study of cryptography and cryptanalysis together. Source: CISSP Exam Guide by Shon Harris, 5th ed, p.676.

Car analogy: door locks vs. anti-theft system.

Re: Wait, are we talking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45148919)

review sez: which is for the most part synonymous

meaning there a similar, but not identical

Re: Wait, are we talking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45155261)

Oblig xkcd.com/386

Stephenson's Cryptonomicon is fiction? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45147705)

I thought it was a history of the birth of information theory as a weapon of war.

Secret history? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45149289)

Hundreds (if not thousands) of books on cryptography have been published.

Re:Secret history? (1)

Steve_Ussler (2941703) | about 10 months ago | (#45154681)

Nah...millions! :)

So...they ripped off "The Code Book"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45149355)

That's exactly what it is (and an excellent read).

DRM is applied (2)

sackbut (1922510) | about a year ago | (#45149397)

$57.00 for the Kindle version??? Wow.

This reminds me... (1)

Michael Jenkins (2869453) | about a year ago | (#45150643)

I should go back to reading Cryptonomicon. For the life of me, I couldn't help but get overwhelmed every I read it, making me quit eventually.

Spoiler: This book is not about Bigfoot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45150669)

I thought this book would be about the government coverup of the existence of bigfoot, chupacbra and the loch ness monster. What I got instead was a book about a bunch of boring math stuff instead. Hated it! One star!

Re:Spoiler: This book is not about Bigfoot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45150861)

It is a book about Bigfoot etc. But if he had written it in the clear, the government would never had allowed him to publish it. Therefore he encrypted it in a lot of mathematics. You just have to get the secret key, and you'll uncover all the secrets about how the monster got into Loch Ness, and how Bigfoot and the Yeti helped with that.

Re:Spoiler: This book is not about Bigfoot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45151177)

If your read between the lines...Sasquatch mentioned on every page..NO JOKE!!

www.blackmagicandgenies.com (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45150743)

black magic spells,love spells.wealth spells,protection spells, revenge spells

No mention about the Code Book!! (1)

sdsri (2855599) | about a year ago | (#45151093)

Surprised to see that the Slashdot review did not include a comparison of this book with The Code Book by Simon Singh (http://www.amazon.com/The-Code-Book-Science-Cryptography/dp/0385495323).

Re:No mention about the Code Book!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45154189)

Agreed, that is an excellent book.

Speaking of Cryptonomicon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45151127)

How come the most awesome book Cryptonomicon has 1,049 reviews on Amazon - http://www.amazon.com/Cryptonomicon-Neal-Stephenson/dp/0060512806

and CyberStorm by Matthew Mather which just came out has 2,172 reviews? Any answers?

www.amazon.com/CyberStorm-Matthew-Mather/dp/0991677196/ref=la_B006QY78Z4_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1382008463&sr=1-1

Re:Speaking of Cryptonomicon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45152213)

Another thoughtit is pretty amazing that it could get 2,100+ reviews being out for a few months, when Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets is over 13 yrs old and have 3,570 customer reviews.

How do you figure that?

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>