[Asterisk-Dev] Is anyone thinking anymore?

Greg Boehnlein damin at nacs.net
Fri Jul 30 06:20:49 MST 2004

On Fri, 30 Jul 2004, Kevin Walsh wrote:

> Greg Boehnlein [damin at nacs.net] wrote:
> > On Thu, 29 Jul 2004, Steve Szmidt wrote:
> > > Actually hacking is the activity of getting into and working inside a
> > > computer, usually to fix it. However you can hack with criminal intent
> > > and it's still hacking. Cracking came about as people who hacked but
> > > did not want to be associated with the criminal activity, started
> > > calling it cracking. Either one is correct, though one is more
> > > descriptive, but less used. (This is something some people will start a
> > > flame war over.) 
> > > 
> > > Then we got white, gray and black hats etc... Going too far off topic
> > > though. 
> > >
> > Hacking is gaining unauthorized access to resources you aren't supposed
> > to access. Used to mean computers, but it has been expanded to include
> > hacking hardware or non-computerized systems.
> > 
> > Cracking means defeating the copy protection of a piece of software to
> > allow duplication. Such as removing the DECCS encryption from a DVD so it
> > can be copied. 
> > 
> I'm afraid you're all wrong on this way off-topic thread. :-)
> Hacking is what hackers do to code.  Hackers are programmers.  I hack
> code every day, so that makes me a hacker.


1. One who is proficient at using or programming a computer; a computer 
2. One who uses programming skills to gain illegal access to a computer 
   network or file. 
3. One who enthusiastically pursues a game or sport: a weekend tennis  

As I said, the original concept of hacking in relation to computers has 
been expanded to include other things. Keep in mind the origin of the 
word, thought to be related to golfing.. I.E. "He hacked at the ball until 
he finally made it to the green." Taking it back even further, it is 
thought to mean someone who used to build furniture. However you look at 
it, the word has been corrupted from it's original meaning.

> When cracker was caught and claimed to be "just a hacker", learning
> how to code on a machine he couldn't possibly afford, the popular
> press jumped on the term "hacker" as a neat buzzword.  The hijacking
> of the word has never really gone away, which explains why I get weird
> looks when I describe myself as a hacker to people who don't know any
> better.
> Now you get various security consultants, and other script kiddies
> (with their multi-coloured hats) all claiming to be hackers.  This,
> combined with misinformed individuals such as yourselves, means that
> the hijackers of the word are unlikely to give it back to its rightful
> owners any time soon.

You right. The golf and tennis communities will never get the word back! 

> > Such as removing the DECCS encryption from a DVD so it
> > can be copied.
> By the way, you can't remove "DECCS" encryption from a DVD, but you
> can use DeCSS to read a DVD that was encoded using CSS. :-)
> Again, way off-topic.

However, the coding that was done to prevent buffer overflows, is not off 
topic, and is just good, proactive thinking. It is important to have in a 
system that touches the network through multiple protocols and runs as 

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