I have always had a passing interest in encryption and security. My PhD is on network file systems, where managing who has access to what data is an important aspect. I also spent the best part of a year working for a biometric security company (fingerprints and one-time-passcodes).
When Practical Cryptography by Bruce Schneier first came out, I immediately purchased a copy, at least partially because in that era it seemed plausible that the government might try to restrict knowledge of cryptography. It has never liked the idea that people might be able to talk without the government being able to listen, and it still doesn't. I think back then encryption software was still regarded as a "munition" and subject to full-on export regulation.
But the Internet came along and we all use cryptography every day, although it is hidden from us in our web browsers and our smartphones.
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