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Steal This Book!

Recently, I had an unexpected endorsement (sort of) for my book. At the Museum of Fine Arts Boston (MFA), the MFA Associates are committed volunteers who serve as guides or floral designers. The Associates have a small back office where they can take breaks, stuff envelopes, or read – the office has two shelves of…

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Buying a Signed Book

Sometimes people ask me about my book tour. I guess that a lot of us have a similar half-formed mental image: the newly-published author is being dragged around the country (or around the world) to promote the new book at lots of bookstore events. The good news / bad news for me is that I’m…

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Security and Breaking Old Stuff

I recently replaced our home wireless network with an eero mesh. I wanted to get something that worked better than the old configuration, and I wanted to replace the old network without anyone else in the house noticing. So I wanted to have no changes of network names, passwords, or configurations. I figured I should…

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Dummies and Geniuses

It’s been interesting to hear a common reaction when I describe my book “Bits to Bitcoin.” My usual pitch is that it’s an accessible guide to operating systems, networks, and security for the general reader. The listener often responds with something like “oh, so it’s a Dummies book,” and I say some version of, “Well,…

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Krugman and “Men with Guns”

Paul Krugman recently used his New York Times opinion column to explain why he’s a cryptocurrency skeptic. I mostly agree with his overall conclusion, and much of what he says is sensible – but one part of his analysis seems so odd that I wonder whether he really meant it. That’s the part where he…

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Bitcoin vs. Bacon

Sometimes bitcoin attracts attention as a bizarre new thing with a rapidly growing price, minting new fortunes. Other times, bitcoin attracts attention as a bizarre new thing with a collapsing price, destroying fortunes. I’m sometimes asked about the price of bitcoin, but unfortunately I don’t have any insights to share – and the reason is…

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