Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Cliff Stoll bounces around and talks

I know who Cliff Stoll is because I read the book "The Cuckoo's Egg", in which the astronomer tackles an accounting anomaly and tracks down hackers from an eastern block country (sorry, forget the details) stealing information from a government lab. The year was 1986. And as I recall, the book is quite good. I was also aware of his Klein Bottle hobby (its a bottle that has no volume and its outside and its inside are one continuous surface, it in theory can't hold a liquid).

I would never have guessed from that book that this energetic, bouncy, distracted, extremely interested and interesting man was the same person. Here is a talk he gave in 2006 in which he touches on so many things in 17 minutes, it defies description. I think one of the most profound questions he is interested in is what will society be like in the future, not what technology will be. (he's supposed to be talking about the future)