Cecile's Reviews > Cuckoo's Egg: Tracking a Spy Through the Maze of Computer Espionage

Cuckoo's Egg by Clifford Stoll
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Sep 07, 09

bookshelves: english, misc

I had the good luck of finding this book in a bookshop in France a long time ago, I was still at school then. I picked it up among books in French, it had only a plain hard cover, without the flap. At last I can see here what the cover looks like.
At that time I was interested in computing history, particularly the hacking part. Probably because I had seen the Wargames movie, but also because I was destined to work as a programmer.
Since then I've read this book several times.

This is the true story of what happened to the author, Cliff: how he, an astrophysicist recycled to a computer centre, managed to track a sneaking hacker through a motley collection of networks and machines.
Probably thanks to his background as a scientist, Cliff takes note of everything in his logbook, from the times and means of the hacking to his struggles with what he calls the three-letter agencies.
Besides his self-assigned quest, which involves a lot of sleeping under his desk, Cliff has also a life of his own, with room-mates, cooking (and cookies), Halloween preparations and so on. All of it is told on a light tone with a hint of humour.

It's really an amazing story, told with every detail and yet still accessible to a large audience.
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