[Hpr] Hpr Digest, Vol 54, Issue 17

Matthew K littlecodemonkey at gmail.com
Wed Mar 20 11:27:15 PDT 2013

Labels work for the most part though. We attempt to classify every
living thing on this earth into a kingdom, phylum, class, order, family,
genius, and species. We attempt classify every type of astral body,
chemical element, state of matter, etc. Not any of them fit everything
exactly, but for the most part the labels work. I think it's silly to
think as a society we can't classify a hacker.

Any group, when specialized enough tries to break out of the labels
placed on it. It often happens when a smaller group within the label
doesn't want to be grouped with another smaller group. It doesn't really
mean much though. I'm sure the nature loving hippe wiccans do not want
to be grouped with goat slaughtering satanists, but they are with the
label of pagan. I'm sure that white collar criminals don't want to be
grouped with murderers and rapists, but they are with the label of
felon. As such makers, hobbists, and engineers are grouped with a darker
group of illicit criminals into the label hackers.

I believe a hacker is someone who has an insatable thirst for knowledge
on a detailed subject, the desire to figure out how certain things work,
and the need to create or modify these things in new or unique ways.

It is why I wouldn't consider the script kiddie a hacker, but although
while I may not agree with what they do, I would consider some black
hats hackers. As long as they are doing something interesting, unique,
new, and messing with things I would consider them hackers. Machinists,
woodworkers, boatbuilders are not necessarily hackers, but they could
be. It depends on how they do what they do. To me, being a hacker is a
state of mind; it is a mentality.


On 03/20/2013 11:31 AM, lostnbronx wrote:
> Personally, I don't care how a person self-identifies.  I have no idea
> what a "real" hacker is, and I don't care to define it.  The act of
> labeling is, by its very nature, destructive, because it MUST exclude
> all those things not perceived as being part of the group.  Amazing
> stuff gets lost this way, no matter how inclusive a group wishes to
> be.
> There are almost certainly listeners of HPR (likely a lot of them) who
> never contribute because they do not think they have anything
> interesting to say.  Certainly, the people on this list will
> understand how tragic that is, but some listeners simply don't see
> themselves as "hackers", and therefore think their own experiences and
> interests don't count as potential HPR content.  Never mind the fact
> that they are fans of the show, which means THEY have an interest in
> this stuff -- somehow they're still on the outside, looking in.  Is
> this a function of the labels we use?  Is it the nature of content
> consumption?  Is it simply human nature?
> Qualifying what a "hacker" is...well, that's a VERY "hacky" thing to
> do, actually, and, on the one hand, I really applaud the effort.  On
> the other, all labels come at a cost.  The cost of exclusion --
> unintentional and undesired though it is -- will always be IMPOSSIBLE
> to assess, since we will never know who we lost, and who we could have
> heard from, save for their fear of rejection or the self-censoring
> aspect of labeled expression.
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