Customer Reviews for

The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography

Average Rating 4.5
( 31 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted April 16, 2011

    highly recommended

    Fascinating historical and mathematical progression in relation to "codes" and "codebreaking". I enjoyed how he tied in ancient languages. Overall, highly recommended.

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  • Posted November 12, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    How cipher-men won the wars and were generally awesome

    Quite a good job at making crypto accessible, with fascinating anecdotes on everything from lost civilizations to fainting frenchmen. And, as with Fermat's Last Theorem, Singh has a knack of bringing out the depth and color of the people and crises in espionage and modern tech.

    The book mostly follows wars, and is not shy to report the more gruesome fates befalling those who trusted their spy code tricks. The geniuses and the subterfuge they wreak are actually fun to follow and Singh gently explains how their magic actually worked.

    Criticisms: Some of the claims about perfect security in the last chapter seemed premature. The flow between some chapters is disjointed, but it's entertaining and covers a very broad subject in satisfying depth.

    My day job is modifying security software and it was very cool to read the story behind DH key exchange. DH was completely mind-blowing when I first understood it. Singh put me in the room as the college kids were discovering it. And that was thrilling to me.

    Almost every chapter in this book weaves a good story, connecting you to the protagonists and spectating over their epic battles of mind against mind. Singh has put a lot of time and research into this book and it shows admirably.

    I liked it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2007

    Awesome, yet a little confusing.

    The book goes into great detail about the past, present, and future of codes and cryptography. When he talks about the actual process of the different machines and ways to make codes, it gets a little confusing. Great book though.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2001

    Great Historical Perspective

    The Code Book is an enjoyable read that covers a fairly decent range of history regarding codes and cryptography. However, it is not all encompassing and does not cover all aspects of history or modern innovations. I found the history of Germany's Enigma and the efforts to defeat it quite detailed and very interesting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2000

    Very Frank Look at our world and our data, thoughts and ideas

    I work with computers and sensitive data day in and day out. Having been a student of codes and ciphers as a youth, I was reminded sharply of the needs for protection of data in our modern world. My company's customers work with sensitive data that must be shared with their customers and regulatory and public agencies. After reading this book, I foresee a need for process and plant data to be protected by some sort of secure transaction layer.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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