American Kingpin

Author: Nick Bilton
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0698405730
Size: 50.64 MB
Format: PDF
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER. The unbelievable true story of the man who built a billion-dollar online drug empire from his bedroom—and almost got away with it In 2011, a twenty-six-year-old libertarian programmer named Ross Ulbricht launched the ultimate free market: the Silk Road, a clandestine Web site hosted on the Dark Web where anyone could trade anything—drugs, hacking software, forged passports, counterfeit cash, poisons—free of the government’s watchful eye. It wasn’t long before the media got wind of the new Web site where anyone—not just teenagers and weed dealers but terrorists and black hat hackers—could buy and sell contraband detection-free. Spurred by a public outcry, the federal government launched an epic two-year manhunt for the site’s elusive proprietor, with no leads, no witnesses, and no clear jurisdiction. All the investigators knew was that whoever was running the site called himself the Dread Pirate Roberts. The Silk Road quickly ballooned into $1.2 billion enterprise, and Ross embraced his new role as kingpin. He enlisted a loyal crew of allies in high and low places, all as addicted to the danger and thrill of running an illegal marketplace as their customers were to the heroin they sold. Through his network he got wind of the target on his back and took drastic steps to protect himself—including ordering a hit on a former employee. As Ross made plans to disappear forever, the Feds raced against the clock to catch a man they weren’t sure even existed, searching for a needle in the haystack of the global Internet. Drawing on exclusive access to key players and two billion digital words and images Ross left behind, Vanity Fair correspondent and New York Times bestselling author Nick Bilton offers a tale filled with twists and turns, lucky breaks and unbelievable close calls. It’s a story of the boy next door’s ambition gone criminal, spurred on by the clash between the new world of libertarian-leaning, anonymous, decentralized Web advocates and the old world of government control, order, and the rule of law. Filled with unforgettable characters and capped by an astonishing climax, American Kingpin might be dismissed as too outrageous for fiction. But it’s all too real.

Coders

Author: Clive Thompson
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
ISBN: 152901901X
Size: 43.34 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Facebook’s algorithms shaping the news. Uber’s cars flocking the streets. Revolution on Twitter and romance on Tinder. We live in a world constructed of computer code. Coders – software programmers – are the people who built it for us. And yet their worlds and minds are little known to outsiders. In Coders, Wired columnist Clive Thompson presents a brilliantly original anthropological reckoning with the most influential tribe in today’s world, interrogating who they are, how they think, what they value, what qualifies as greatness in their world, and what should give us pause. One of the most prominent journalists writing on technology today, Clive Thompson takes us into the minds of coders, the most quietly influential people on the planet, in a journey into the heart of the machine – and the men and women who made it.

Conspiracy

Author: Ryan Holiday
Publisher: Profile Books
ISBN: 178283463X
Size: 46.67 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
View: 1897
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In 2016, one of the giants of modern journalism fell: Gawker Media, infamous for saying what other outlets wouldn't say, was sued for publishing Hulk Hogan's sex tape, lost the case and went bust. After countless other lawsuits it seemed that Gawker had finally run out of luck. But luck had nothing to do with it. Peter Thiel, PayPal founder and billionaire investor, had masterminded the whole thing. Still furious at an article that had outed him ten years previously, and increasingly disgusted at Gawker's unscrupulous reporting methods, Thiel had spent nearly a decade meticulously plotting a conspiracy that would lead to the demise of Gawker and its founder, Nick Denton. After a multi-year proxy war through the Florida legal system, the settlement of $140million in favour of Hogan ended it. The verdict would stun the world and so would Peter's ultimate unmasking as the man who had set it all in motion. Why had he done this? How had no one discovered it? What would this mean--for free speech? For privacy? For culture? In Holiday's masterful telling of this nearly unbelievable conspiracy, informed by exclusive interviews with all the key players, this case transcends the narrative of how one billionaire took down a media empire or the current state of the free press. It's a study in power, strategy, and one of the most wildly ambitious - and successful - secret plots in recent memory.