News Tagged "Science"

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Hacking and the Social Contract

  • Viktor Mayer-Schönberger
  • Science
  • February 10, 2023

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The concept of “hacking” is not an invention of the digital age. Nor is it a purely technical process, although today it often requires some technical expertise. Humans have always tried to find loopholes in the systems of rules we find ourselves beholden to. When we reach a wall, we try to find a way around it.

Bruce Schneier’s A Hacker’s Mind is a collection of fairly short, often insightful commentaries about hacking. Schneier is one of the nation’s most well-known cybersecurity experts, and his prose is clear, jargon-free, and a pleasure to read. A reader might pick up this book for the numerous instructive cases and vignettes it offers, but conceptually, …

To Endow Trust

  • Benedikt Herrmann
  • Science
  • October 12, 2012

Liars and Outliers Enabling the Trust That Society Needs to Thrive by Bruce Schneier Wiley, Indianapolis, IN, 2012. 382 pp. $24.95, C$27.95. ISBN 9781118143308.

When the extent of the financial crisis came to light in 2008, former chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan had to admit to Congress that he had “made a mistake in presuming that the self interest of organizations … was such that they were best capable of protecting their own shareholders and the equity in the firms”—a mistake that turned out to be very costly, and not only to the American economy. It might be unfair to blame Greenspan for his misperception of the self-interest of organizations. Until very recently, there was no way for someone to objectively and impartially measure the nature of human social behavior. From Aristotle to George W. Bush, decisions have been made based on personal beliefs about how selfishly or cooperatively other people will act…

Sidebar photo of Bruce Schneier by Joe MacInnis.