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Customer Review

on September 8, 2003
Liked the book a lot, great atmosphere, good plot, but the author makes some incredible misstatements about computers. For example: in this book she receives a folder with an encrypted "computer code " (sic?). She says that the client could have faxed it in thus it must be paper. [beware sery semi-technical stuff folllows - A small b&w (2 inches by 4) picture of any resolution, say that of this screen would be 50000 bytes or 400000 bits. If the bytes were printed as letters and symbols (improbable in itself for technical reasons)that would be 25 solid pages of meaningless strings of letters. If this were represented as 1's and 0's it would be 200 pages.] Then she uses "special software' to decrypt
it. Decryption with the password is instant, decryption without a password is an enormous, long task that takes lots of power and time particularly if the user doesn't know what the code represents, text, image or sound.
Other howling defects. SHe and her partner use common names as usernames with no mention of passwords - even naiive computer people would never use a simple single word for any secure system. Their system is zapped instantly by another computer - again, these are computer security people with no firewalls or virus software?
The point of this is not too nitpick but twofold: If the protagonist is an expert is something, this same protagonist shouldn't be wrong every time she talks about her area of specialty. Two, these constant errors of fact just destroy the atmosphere the author creates so well with the rest of her text.
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