Digital Protest, Hacking

An outline of hacking culture

Hacking started as a non-technological thing. The term is coined at the Tech Model Railroad Club at MIT (in the 1940s). They had this huge train track and started using early computers to control signals etc. They ended up using a TX-0 valve computer (which was 3,000,000 at the time). The come up with the idea that information wants to be free.

Like any subculture, these people start to make up their own words: Foobar, mung, hack (which is an elaborate prank at MIT). See also the Jargon File 4.4.7

Language emerged from programming: if (going) and if (!going). Why are programmers into fantasy literature? Because coding is a bit like magic (maybe).

Also The Homebrew Computer Club (where Woz and Jobs would hang out) and 2600 Hacker Quarterly. 2600Hz is the frequency that AT&T would use to indicate that there was money in the phone (ie. if you could whistle into the phone correctly you could make calls for free).

Hacking as protest

List of security hacking incidents

|1903|Magician hacks into a telegraph machine demonstration| |1943|Rene Carmille hacks the Nazis' punchcard system| |1943|Turing|

Von Neuman knew about self-replicating machines (ie. viruses) in the 1940s of course. See also Conway's Game of Life. Also the recursive version.

The CCC happens every year. (They invented Blinkenlights). Hilbilly Tracking of low earth orbit. Also [USB Flashdrives for Freedom]

Aaron Swartz

Julian Oliver: Transparency Grenade - throw it into a building and it starts logging network traffic. Here he's using a physical object to give shape to this abstract protest idea.

Also windo turbines powering a computer mining bitcoin funding climate research. A non-human object that works by itself. Hyvrid-protests.