Cryptonomicon

Front Cover
Harper Collins, May 3, 2000 - Fiction - 928 pages
2142 Reviews
With this extraordinary first volume in what promises to be an epoch-making masterpiece, Neal Stephenson hacks into the secret histories of nations and the private obsessions of men, decrypting with dazzling virtuosity the forces that shaped this century.

In 1942, Lawrence Pritchard Waterhouse - mathematical genius and young Captain in the U.S. Navy - is assigned to detachment 2702. It is an outfit so secret that only a handful of people know it exists, and some of those people have names like Churchill and Roosevelt. The mission of Watrehouse and Detatchment 2702-commanded by Marine Raider Bobby Shaftoe-is to keep the Nazis ignorant of the fact that Allied Intelligence has cracked the enemy's fabled Enigma code. It is a game, a cryptographic chess match between Waterhouse and his German counterpart, translated into action by the gung-ho Shaftoe and his forces.

Fast-forward to the present, where Waterhouse's crypto-hacker grandson, Randy, is attempting to create a "data haven" in Southeast Asia - a place where encrypted data can be stored and exchanged free of repression and scrutiny. As governments and multinationals attack the endeavor, Randy joins forces with Shaftoe's tough-as-nails grandaughter, Amy, to secretly salvage a sunken Nazi sumarine that holds the key to keeping the dream of a data haven afloat. But soon their scheme brings to light a massive conspiracy with its roots in Detachment 2702 linked to an unbreakable Nazi code called Arethusa. And it will represent the path to unimaginable riches and a future of personal and digital liberty...or to universal totalitarianism reborn.

A breathtaking tour de force, and Neal Stephenson's most accomplished and affecting work to date, CRYPTONOMICON is profound and prophetic, hypnotic and hyper-driven, as it leaps forward and back between World War II and the World Wide Web, hinting all the while at a dark day-after-tomorrow. It is a work of great art, thought, and creative daring; the product of a truly icon

  

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His prose and humor are great. - LibraryThing
The writing was so lazy at times, I was amazed. - LibraryThing
It is engaging and could be called a page turner. - LibraryThing
Top Shelf though with a weak ending. - LibraryThing
Loses a half star for the ending - LibraryThing

Review: Cryptonomicon (Cryptonomicon #1)

User Review  - Pete Marchetto - Goodreads

Oh dear, where to begin? Okay, this lengthy tome has been called 'the ultimate geek novel', but I don't buy into that. What Stephenson has written is an adventure novel with depth and intelligence ... Read full review

Review: Cryptonomicon (Cryptonomicon #1)

User Review  - Dodecahedron - Goodreads

I finished it! high five! Whenever I see books this big I have to wonder... is it really worth reading? I mean, do I really want to invest three weeks and a potential headache to finish this? Besides ... Read full review

All 15 reviews »

Contents

I
5
II
23
III
31
IV
48
V
62
VI
75
VII
85
VIII
89
XLIII
543
XLIV
553
XLV
561
XLVI
569
XLVII
577
XLVIII
586
XLIX
590
L
609

IX
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X
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XII
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XIV
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XXIX
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XXX
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XXXI
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XXXVI
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XXXVII
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XXXVIII
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XXXIX
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XL
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XLI
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XLII
529
LI
620
LII
633
LIII
639
LIV
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LV
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LVI
675
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LVIII
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LIX
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LX
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LXI
717
LXII
730
LXIII
738
LXIV
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LXV
753
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764
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785
LXIX
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LXX
814
LXXI
827
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LXXIV
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LXXVI
863
LXXVII
877
LXXVIII
885
LXXIX
893
LXXX
901
LXXXI
907
LXXXII
911
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 73 - ... responsible persons who need the information in order to discharge their duties. No action is to be taken on information herein reported, regardless of temporary advantage, if such action might have the effect of revealing the existence of the source to the enemy.
Page 911 - Solitaire gets its security from the inherent randomness in a shuffled deck of cards. By manipulating this deck, a communicant can create a string of "random" letters that he then combines with his message.
Page 911 - Codes, he describes a real pencil-and-paper cipher used by a Soviet spy. Both the Soviet algorithm and Solitaire take about the same amount of time to encrypt a message.
Page 911 - Solitaire to be secure even against the most well-funded military adversaries with the biggest computers and the smartest cryptanalysts.
Page 911 - It's not fast, though. It can take an evening to encrypt or decrypt a reasonably long message.
Page 69 - ... what he sees in his mind's eye when he looks at the...

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About the author (2000)

Neal Stephenson is the author of Reamde, Anathem; the three-volume historical epic the Baroque Cycle (Quicksilver, The Confusion, and The System of the World); Cryptonomicon; The Diamond Age; Snow Crash, which was named one of Time magazine's top one hundred all-time best English-language novels; and Zodiac. He lives in Seattle, Washington.

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