Cuckoo's Egg: Tracking a Spy Through the Maze of Computer Espionage
||Author: Clifford Stoll|
List Price: $13.95
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Publisher: Pocket Books (03 October, 2000)
Sales Rank: 8,776
Average Customer Rating: 4.71 out of 5
Customer ReviewsRating: 5 out of 5
Even to non-computer wise peoples The Cuckoo's Egg is a delightful read the explores the reality of computer hackers and the vulnerability of systems to new age hackers. In concise words it tells the story of a 75 cent discrepancy in a 'home-brewed' accounting system that leads to much more.
Rating: 5 out of 5
A well-written and thoroughly engaging account. Although this book will be most interesting to computer geeks, it is written to be accessible to all readers - technical jargon is kept to a minimum, or clearly explained when necessary. Because the events occurred in the eighties, many of the specifics seem rather dated now, but the basic principles are still relevant.
But the essence of this book is not the technical aspect - it's the very human story of an individual determined to solve a mystery at all costs. Stoll wrestles with adversaries (not only the spy himself, but also unhelpful government agents, his bosses, and even awkward computer systems), finds solutions to his problems (sometimes through cleverness and ingenuity, sometimes through tedious, determined effort), celebrates his victories and comes to terms with his failures, and shows how he has grown from the experience and come to new understandings.
Though Stoll downplays his computer expertise ("I'm an astronomer, not a programmer"), he's clearly a hacker in the truest sense of the word - ingenious, determined, iconoclastic, and a bit of a mystic. Frankly, he seems like a helluva guy, possessed of intellect, integrity, and a clever sense of humor. Perhaps one of the most valuable aspects of the book is the insight it gives into the hacker mindset.
The book occasionally gets repetitive - usually to reinforce the technical concepts for the benefit of general readers - but overall, it's competently written and easy to read. Stoll isn't here to craft award-winning literature; he's here to tell a story, and he does that quite well.
I've read this book several times, and will certainly read it several more times. If you fancy yourself a hacker, or just like a good real-life adventure story, this book is essential reading.
Rating: 5 out of 5
I couldn't put this book down. I love it when real life surpasses fictional imagination. The story of Mr. Stoll's discovery of a hacker in his university's computer network, and the international chase that ensued was thrilling. His all-nighters, help from his girlfriend (turned ex-girlfriend by the book's end), and triumphant and happy ending makes for fascinating reading.
I think that this book would make a wonderful movie, even if the technology is way outdated by now. Hollywood -- pay attention.
· The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security
· Silicon Snake Oil : Second Thoughts on the Information Highway
· Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution
· The Fugitive Game
· The Masters of Deception : Gang That Ruled Cyberspace, The