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Disappearing Cryptography, 3rd Edition by Peter Wayner

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Chapter 3. Error Correction

3.1. Close but No Cigar

  1. Speedwalking.
  2. America OnLine, CompuServe and Prodigy.
  3. Veggie burgers.
  4. Using a Stairmaster.
  5. Winning the Wild Card pennant.
  6. Driving 55 mph.
  7. Living in suburbia.
  8. New Year's Resolutions.
  9. Lists as poetry.
  10. Lists as a simple way to give structure to humor.
  11. Cigarettes.

3.2. Correcting Errors

The theory of computers rests on an immutable foundation: a bit is either on (“1”) or off (“0”). Underneath this foundation, however, is the normal, slightly random, slightly chaotic world in which humans spend their time. Just as the sun is sometimes a bit brighter than usual and sometimes it rains for a week straight, the physics that govern computer hardware are a bit more random. Sometimes the spot on the ...

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