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> Kenshiro writes:
> > I am planning to do take an independent study course in cryptography. A
> > professor here is interested in doing it with me, but neither he nor any
> > other faculty members at this school is very knowledgeable about
> > cryptography (hence his interest :). I am looking for good (technical)
> > books on cryptography which would work well as textbooks for undergraduate
> > computer science majors with scant knowledge of number theory.
> The right place to start is the new edition of Bruce Schneier's book,
> Applied Cryptography, which will be coming out within a month. The old
> edition will probably do until then. There are a number of other
> books, but Bruce's is the One Stop Shopping center, and you can spend
> years dredging up the things in the bibliography.
> For flavor and motivation, you might also want to read the (unabridged
> hardcover -- not paperback!) version of "The Codebreakers" by David
> Kahn. I read this book as a child and I suppose it got me interested
> in crypto for life -- the funny thing is, it appears that the same
> experience inspired Whit Diffie to go off and co invent Public Key
> Cryptography, so it is probably a history maker. However, I'll note
> that its fluffy -- all it will do is give you a solid perspective on
> how hard it is to do this stuff right and how important it is.
I also suggest "A Course in Number Theory and Cryptography, 2nd Edition"
by Neal Koblitz, published by Springer Verlag.
"Applied Cryptography" is certainly the book of choice, but Koblitz
is an excellent secondary reference for covering a lot of the relevant
mathematics in more depth.
In my opinion, "Applied Cryptography" was written from the perspective
of computer science, "The Codebreakers" was written from the perspective
of history, and Koblitz's book was written from the perspective of
They are all nicely complementary.
Dana W. Albrecht