Instead, this book advocates a more personal form of revolution—the revolution within your own thinking. Instead of blindly blaming national governments, international corporations, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, multi-cultural organizations, ideological beliefs, religious institutions, or political parties for all the world's problems, this book suggests that:

  • If you change the way you think, you'll change the way you act.

  • If you change the way you act, you'll be able to change the way others act and think.

  • If you change the way others act and think, you can help change the world— one person at a time.

But it all begins with you.

That's why this book advocates changing your own way of thinking first, because none of us can be correct 100 percent of the time, and the first step toward true change is admitting that neither you nor I—nor your parents, your boss, your spouse, your family, your government, or your church—know everything.

There's no shame in not knowing everything, but there is shame in pretending that we do. We can and must learn from each other, regardless of what we look like, where we live, what we believe in, or which country we might be living in. Open, honest communication is the only way we can change this world for the better, and that's where this book and your personal computer come into play.

Communication's the thing

Although computers are still notoriously difficult, confusing, and downright frustrating to use, they represent a quantum leap in communication similar to the inventions of the alphabet or the printing press. With personal computers and the Internet, people can send and receive email, research information through the World Wide Web, and exchange ideas with people all over the world.

But don't be fooled by the marketing hype designed to suck you into the computer revolution. The world of computers is fraught with hidden dangers that the computer marketing departments don't mention, such as Trojan Horses, electronic espionage, remote computer monitoring, hate groups, con artists, pedophiles, pornography, and terrorism—all just a mouse click away.

This book not only reveals these dangers, but will also help you understand how people create them in the first place. The more you know about anything, the better you can avoid or fight it. Besides exploring the underground nature of the Internet that television and magazine ads conveniently ignore, this book also exposes the darker side of the computer industry itself.

Truth is nothing but a point of view

Although this book won't pretend to be a comprehensive resource for every possible legal and illegal activity you might run across on the Internet, keep in mind that the information provided in this book can help or hurt others. The information itself is neutral. Crash your government's computer network and you may be labeled a terrorist. Do the same thing to an enemy's computer network, and your government may proclaim you a hero. Good and evil depend solely on your point of view.

So welcome to the side of computers that the computer industry doesn't want you to know about, a world where slickly printed tutorials and training classes don't exist.

This is the underground of the real computer revolution, where everyone is encouraged to question, explore, and criticize, but most importantly, to learn how to think for themselves.

And to many governments, corporations, and religions, people who know how to think for themselves can be the most dangerous weapons in the world.