Create an Account
username: password:
  MemeStreams Logo

Elonka's Memestreams Page - Subcultures R Us


Picture of Elonka
Elonka's Pics
My Blog
My Profile
My Audience
My Sources
Send Me a Message

sponsored links

Elonka's topics
  Sci-Fi/Fantasy Literature
   Movie Genres
    Sci-Fi/Fantasy Films
  TV Game Shows
  SciFi TV
  Role Playing Games
  Trading Card Games
  Video Games
   PC Video Games
   Console Video Games
   Multiplayer Online Games
Health and Wellness
Home and Garden
   Using MemeStreams
Current Events
  War on Terrorism
   Asian Travel
   North American Travel
Local Information
   St. Louis
    St. Louis Events
  Politics and Law
   Civil Liberties
    Internet Civil Liberties
   Computer Security
   Human Computer Interaction
   Web Design
  High Tech Developments

support us

Get MemeStreams Stuff!

Cryptography, steganography, movies, cyberculture, travel, games, and too many other hobbies to list!

Slashdot | Interview With Cryptographer Elonka Dunin
Topic: Miscellaneous 12:19 pm EST, Mar 14, 2006

Interview With Cryptographer Elonka Dunin

from the old-school-geeks dept.

An anonymous reader writes "Whitedust is running a very interesting article with the DEF CON speaker and cryptographer Elonka Dunin. The article covers her career and specifically her involvement with the CIA and other US Military agencies."

Top link on slashdot for the nanosecond...

(3/15/2006 Update): Pushed my book's Amazon ranking, too. Current high-water mark, #2,721.

(3/16/2006: #7588, #12,274)

(3/17/2006: #9,569)

Slashdot | Interview With Cryptographer Elonka Dunin

RE: How Dan Brown's wife unlocked the code to bestseller success
Topic: Miscellaneous 11:28 am EST, Mar 12, 2006

oaknet wrote:

The story of Blythe is just another piece in crappy jigsaw puzzle of publicity about a dopey book - specifically trying to enthuse the psuedo-feminisist claptrap that behind every great man is an even greater woman. That's not feminisim, that's making an excuse for yourself. Feminism is about making a name for yourself.

Actually, no, I don't think that this is part of the publicity engine. I think that Blythe has done everything possible to stay *out* of the spotlight. She's never (to my knowledge) given an interview, and there are very few pictures of her available.

My own stand on this, is that I'll admit that I'm annoyed when the public spotlight for any major accomplishment focuses on a single individual, whether it be writing a bestselling novel, negotiating a peace treaty, developing an artificial heart, or creating a critically-acclaimed movie. I have too often seen attention go to a single name, simply because that makes the story easier to understand, but it ignores or belittles all the dozens of other people who were instrumental in that accomplishment. It also bothers me when I see all the attention go to the man of a relationship, when it's clear that the success was the result of a partnership between a husband and wife team. In those cases, I say give the credit to the team, not just to the man. In the case of Brown's novels, I think it's a clear case that Blythe has been a close partner, not just personally, but professionally as well, and she should be recognized for that.

As for whether The Da Vinci Code is well-written, I'm not going to argue that. ;) I think the history is appalling, the conspiracy theories are garbage, and the frequent insistence on phrases like "all of this information is factual," or "most historians agree" is nauseating. Then again, historical accuracy aside, it *is* a fun read, and it has sparked a public debate and search for knowledge about some worthy subjects. I know that my own knowledge of the Grail legend, and the history of the Knights Templar and other elements of the Crusades has increased several hundred percent over the last year, as I've dug in to determine for myself what is fact and what is fiction. And bookstores all over the place have noticed an increase in sales of books about medieval history. I think those are good things, even if the result was unintentional. ;)

Elonka :)

RE: How Dan Brown's wife unlocked the code to bestseller success

How Dan Brown's wife unlocked the code to bestseller success
Topic: Miscellaneous 8:12 pm EST, Mar 11, 2006

Blythe [Brown] was the research expert behind some of the most colourful and intriguing themes in the work, which involves a search for the Holy Grail via clues hidden in Leonardo da Vinci's paintings.

Hitherto barely heralded, the older, more glamorous half of the Browns is emerging as, if not the 'real brains' behind The Da Vinci Code, then certainly a creative energy as indispensable to her husband as the Mona Lisa herself.

The reclusive and childless New Hampshire couple are a formidable literary team. Blythe, 53, the 'silent partner', has been her husband's artistic lodestar ever since they formed a relationship in Los Angeles 16 years ago. She is cited by Brown, 41, as his 'inspiration'.

As I've been doing my own research on Dan Brown for his Wikipedia biography, I'd already come to the same conclusion -- that his wife, Blythe, was one of the driving forces behind his success. After they met, she introduced him to the right people, wrote press releases, and did a lot of the books' promotion. She's not the sole reason for his success (even with her help, Brown's first CDs and books had only mediocre sales, until The Da Vinci Code went to #1 in its first week), so there's still other ingredients required in the bestseller recipe. But I'm glad that the mainstream press is catching up with this, because I think that Blythe *should* get credit, where credit is due.

Elonka :)

How Dan Brown's wife unlocked the code to bestseller success

Navigating the Amazon Sales Ranking
Topic: Miscellaneous 11:00 am EST, Mar  8, 2006

Books with rankings over 100,000 are also recalculated every day and applied with historic sales information and projections, although in the case of these books, history takes a back seat. Sales projections and trending take an active role here, which is why a book’s ranking can leap from 900,000 to 200,000 in the span of 24 hours or less. Does this mean the book has sold 700,000 copies in 24 hours? Absolutely not! What it does mean is that recent activity (i.e. purchases) for that book is trending higher than those 700,000 books it just surpassed. But, don’t get excited just yet; since the activity of those 700,000 other books range from slow to stagnant, one or two orders are sufficient to catapult a ranking.

If anyone runs across memes that give more information on the Amazon sales ranking algorithm, please pass them along? I'm still sorting through it, myself. Today, my book (currently scheduled for a late April 2006 release) spiked up from a ranking of 1 million-plus a couple days ago, to #32,935 . I guess that means that somebody bought a copy... ;)

Elonka :)

3/17/2006 Update: The book will be released on March 28 in the U.S., and April 27 in the UK.

Navigating the Amazon Sales Ranking

Librarian comments on 'Da Vinci' lawsuit
Topic: Arts 1:11 pm EST, Mar  7, 2006

An attorney for the authors told the court that Brown's wife, Blythe Brown, and Planton scoured religious and historical texts on Brown's behalf as he wrote his novel, typing up notes and in some instances, copying parts of the 1982 book.
Planton said he doesn't know anything about that.

"His wife was doing much of the research," said Planton, who said he didn't save any of his e-mails. "They work in a very symbiotic relationship."

Librarian comments on 'Da Vinci' lawsuit

DNS Report
Topic: Web Design 2:33 pm EST, Feb 28, 2006

This site will provide you with a DNS report for your domain. A very large percentage of domains have DNS problems; this site will help you find those problems and fix them.

Handy utility.

DNS Report

UK Guardian: In a packed high court, a new twist in The Da Vinci Code begins to unfold
Topic: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Films 2:18 pm EST, Feb 28, 2006

Regarding Baigent/Leigh's 1982 Holy Blood, Holy Grail, and Brown's 2003 The Da Vinci Code:

The respective figures for the two books are around 2m copies and 36m - still rising and set to rise even more sharply with the imminent release of the film version.

The claim by Mr Baigent and Mr Leigh is that "the central theme" of their book has been borrowed for the novel. The two men were noticeably not flanked by minders from their publishers: they are suing not Dan Brown but his publishers, for breach of UK copyright in the UK editions of the book. In a coincidence almost worthy of a conspiracy theorist, because of a string of takeovers in the industry, the books share the same publisher, Random House.

I'd noticed that traffic to my Kryptos site had doubled, with this time a sizeable percentage coming from a Guardian article that was published several months ago. Looks like this story is the reason: Brown is currently getting sued in the UK, and the Guardian article about it has a "see also" section referring to the Kryptos story.

There's speculation that the trial may delay the release of the movie. I wonder if that'll change the release date of my book! It's a strange feeling, seeing my own fortunes tied so closely to far away headlines...


UK Guardian: In a packed high court, a new twist in The Da Vinci Code begins to unfold

Chris Bliss
Topic: Arts 1:48 am EST, Feb 25, 2006

Go to this link. Watch "The Big Finale".


Chris Bliss Mammoth Book of Secret Codes and Cryptograms: Books: Elonka Dunin
Topic: Cyber-Culture 4:13 pm EST, Feb 20, 2006

Ranking: 171,588 in Books
Yesterday: #1,129,031 in Books

I found this interesting. Yesterday, my book (which isn't even hitting the shelves until April) was ranked at 1,129,031 in sales on Amazon U.S. Today, it's at 171,588. I wonder if this has something to do with the Digg attention . . .

Elonka Mammoth Book of Secret Codes and Cryptograms: Books: Elonka Dunin

Famous Unsolved Codes and Ciphers (and
Topic: Web Design 3:12 pm EST, Feb 20, 2006

My Famous Unsolved Codes page got "Dugg" (again), resulting in massive traffic, from hundreds per day to many thousands per day, starting at about 1 p.m. on Sunday (traffic jumped from 40/hour, to 244/hour, to over 3000/hour).

My current "Diggs" score is 1124 (most other scores that day were in the single digits). This pushed my site over the 1.5 million number in terms of total page views.

Total "" traffic, according to sitemeter:

   Total 687,705
   Average Per Day 2,780
   Average Visit Length 1:45
   Last Hour 268
   Today 4,391
   This Week 19,458


   Total 1,522,072
   Average Per Day 4,153
   Average Per Visit 1.5
   Last Hour 370
   Today 6,112
   This Week 29,069

The harmonics are interesting, though it's unclear on which site picked me up first.

Referring sites list, ranked by visits, of the last few thousand visitors:

2,264 56.6%
468 11.7%
96 2.4%
92 2.3%
83 2.1%
27 0.7%
21 0.5%
19 0.5%
15 0.4%
11 0.3%
10 0.3%
9 0.2%
8 0.2%
8 0.2%
8 0.2%
7 0.2%
6 0.2%
5 0.1%
5 0.1%

At the AAAS conference over the weekend, there were some interesting numbers presented by academics who are studying internet usage, especially among teens (who are currently describing email as "something that you use to talk to old people"). I'd very much love to have some age demographic data on my website numbers, to learn how many of the visitors are from adult academics, and how many are teens who are following the latest "must go see the site that all my friends are looking at, so that I can say that I looked at it too...."

Famous Unsolved Codes and Ciphers (and

(Last) Newer << 4 ++ 14 - 15 - 16 - 17 - 18 - 19 - 20 - 21 - 22 ++ 32 >> Older (First)
Powered By Industrial Memetics