: New: Book Report: The Unseen World

It's a novel about a young lady who grows up amongst researchers at something kinda like MIT's AI Lab, but different. There's learning and forgetting and machine learning and I suppose machine forgetting too. There's also a little spy stuff and codes.

E.g. there's a character named Diana Liston. She does a lot of talking on the phone while someone's eavesdropping, so it seems important that her name dianA LISton contains the sounds of "Alice". Or maybe that's a red herring—we know the name of the eavesdropper and it's not Eve; "Alice" doesn't mostly talk to a "Bob" (although there is a Robert scurrying around, we don't hear from him much).

And there's a kid who uses a secret code that combines a Caesar Shift cipher with with A=1 B=2 numeric. That's not a super-secret code, but it's plausible for a kid. It's not so clear to me how the narrator knew so much about a message encoded in that cipher, but maybe that just means that I'm over-focusing on the wrong things. Like there's a snippet of LISP code and I'd have preferred a longer snippet so I could test a theory about a mysterious message that we never learn the meaning of for sure&hellip Not every novel needs to be a neat puzzle-box. (Or maybe this novel is a neat puzzle-box and I staggered past the solution while looking for LISP code that just would have ruled out a red herring? Anyhow.)

Tags: book puzzle scene

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