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Friday, December 3, 2010

The Perfect Virus principle #10: No Common Denominator

As indicated in my post of Monday, 11/22/2010, I am extrapolating Jeff Walker's Principles for the Perfect Application into a discussion of The Perfect Virus. Since Jeff's monograph on the subject did not anticipate stealth or suicide mechanisms, any errors or lapses into stupidity are solely my additions and should not reflect poorly on what I consider to be the biggest single contribution to software application design since the invention of computers. And Jeff, thanks for giving me permission to do surgery on your baby.
THE PRINCIPLE OF NO COMMON DENOMINATOR: The Perfect Virus exploits the strengths of underlying hardware and software, even when those strengths are not universally available.

No Common Denominator is one of the benefits of principle #7, Black Box Portability. Combined with #9, Native Implementation, The Perfect Virus will not only be exhibit more Stealth (principle #14) because of Performance (principle #4), but it will leave a smaller footprint, also a Stealth principle. Finally, because of principle #3, Seamless Migration, pieces of The Perfect Virus can be distributed to systems under your control. Specifically, you might have highly computational requirements that can't possibly be hidden if run on a target system. They may in fact require a server farm or even a supercomputer. We'll cover this in more detail in the Stealth discussion.

Your assignment, prior to Wednesday when I post principle #14 on Stealth, is to get into the proper frame of mind by renting or buying (and viewing) the Woody Harrelson movie Zombieland. Specifically, Jesse Eisenberg's rules to live by.

The No Common Denominator system might even be a one-of-a-kind asset, like maybe the Chinese Mother Ship—the control system for their Mother Fleet (MF) —designed for world cyber domination. It might be the attitude control computer in a military or communications satellite, or nuclear codes in the "President's Football" (who's to say you aren't sitting at a state dinner using high-frequency electronics aimed at the guy with the briefcase handcuffed to his wrist to unleash a little surprise on Mecca?). That's right, grasshopper. Just because you're fighting a cyber war, don't expect real destruction and real death to be far behind.

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Implementation suggestions for THE MORGAN DOCTRINE are most welcome. What are the "Got'chas!"? What questions would some future Cyber Privateering Czar have to answer about this in a Senate confirmation hearing?