With all the ABC excitement I forgot to mention that I have a review in last week’s Wall Street Journal of three books about trust and security: Bruce Schneier’s Liars and Outliers, Kip Hawley’s Permanent Emergency, and Harvey Molotch’s Against Security.
With limited space to cover all three books, I ended up not really talking about any of the mathematical content. There was some! I didn’t get to mention, for instance, that Schneier uses the prisoner’s dilemma as a central organizing principle of his account of trust. Or that Hawley, the former director of the TSA, asserts that he was strongly influenced by complexity theory, chaos theory, and network theory in his approach to transportation security. I certainly would have written about that last part if Hawley had given a clearer account of what he meant by this intriguing claim. But what we cannot talk about we must pass over in silence.