Blown to Bits: Your Life, Liberty, and Happiness After the by Hal Abelson, Ken Ledeen, Harry Lewis

By Hal Abelson, Ken Ledeen, Harry Lewis

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Every day, billions of photos, information tales, songs, X-rays, television indicates, telephone calls, and emails are being scattered all over the world as sequences of zeroes and ones: bits. We can’t get away this explosion of electronic info and few folks wish to–the merits are too seductive. The expertise has enabled exceptional innovation, collaboration, leisure, and democratic participation.

But an analogous engineering marvels are shattering centuries-old assumptions approximately privateness, id, loose expression, and private regulate as a growing number of info of our lives are captured as electronic data.

Can you regulate who sees all that non-public information regarding you? Can e-mail be really private, whilst not anything looks deepest? Shouldn’t the web be censored the best way radio and television are? Is it relatively a federal crime to obtain tune? if you happen to use Google or Yahoo! to look for anything, how do they come to a decision which websites to teach you? Do you continue to have loose speech within the electronic global? Do you could have a voice in shaping govt or company guidelines approximately any of this?

Blown to Bits deals provocative solutions to those questions and tells interesting real-life tales. This publication is a warning call to the human results of the electronic explosion.

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Extra resources for Blown to Bits: Your Life, Liberty, and Happiness After the Digital Explosion

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Technology Is Neither Good nor Bad Any technology can be used for good or ill. Nuclear reactions create electric power and weapons of mass destruction. The same encryption technology that makes it possible for you to email your friends with confidence that no eavesdropper will be able to decipher your message also makes it possible for terrorists to plan their attacks undiscovered. The same Internet technology that facilitates the widespread distribution of educational works to impoverished students in remote locations also enables massive copyright infringement.

Millions of Americans are victimized by identity theft every year, at a total cost in the tens of billions of dollars annually. Many more of us harbor daily fears that just “a little bit” of our financial information has leaked out, and could be a personal time bomb if it falls into the wrong hands. Why can’t we just keep our personal information to ourselves? Why do so many other people have it in the first place, so that there is an opportunity for it to go astray, and an incentive for creative crooks to try to steal it?

If you pay with a credit card, the store knows your name, and a good deal more about you from your purchasing history. If you wear those shoes when you walk into a branch store in Los Angeles a month later, and that branch has an RFID reader under the rug at the entrance, the clerk could greet you by name. She might offer you a scarf to match the shoes—or to match anything else you bought recently from any other branch of the store. On the other hand, the store might know that you have a habit of returning almost everything you buy—in that case, you might find yourself having trouble finding anyone to wait on you!

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