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Following the True Path to Hacking by Voya (July 7, 1999)

:KrillinThug: This Textfile was written on the summer of july 7th 1999 by Voya :KrillinThug:
computer ship it GIF


ABOUT THIS DOCUMENT: There is a difference of opinion on whether the experienced should help the novice. There are those who believe that the experienced should finally start teaching the inexperienced, while others say that they should stop tutoring and leave the novice to ponder by themselves without any help or interference, just like the first members of the community had to do when they began their quest. These people believe that a newbie should not have any advantages that they did not have.

No one helped THEM, since there was no one at that time who knew enough. By the end of this document, you will understand why teaching or not teaching a novice can affect their outcome and role in the scene. Perhaps i have already said too much. In this guide, I will not give you technical instructions. I will not tutor you or instruct you. However, what I will do instead is steer you in the right direction and guide you to the CORRECT path if you decide to pursue one. I hope that by the end you will be determined to walk the correct path. If this is true, I will no longer be able to help you, and you will be alone.
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'THE PATH'

I resent the word 'hack'... in this document I have written it only once. I will not mention it again, or any of its derivations. It will be obvious when I am referring to the people who practice it, unless I am specifically talking about someone else. An individual who practices it will be referred to as 'one'. Now you should ask: But why do I restrain myself from using this word? But the answer to this you probably already know. How many times have you heard this word used by the media? How many times have you heard this word in the same context with 'crime', 'criminals', 'theft', 'destruction', 'terrorism'? The media has brainwashed the public and they have substituted the real meaning of this word with a false one. This word has been abused and raped by the media and its profiteering whores.

The word has suffered senseless abuse, and no matter how much anyone tries, the public will never learn. If one says it in public, he/she will automatically inherit all the bad prejudged properties that are the luggage of this word. They go where it goes. Whenever you hear someone brag and brag about it(like the media), I assure you... they don't know what they are talking about. They don't know what it is, what its about, and who are the people that are involved. The word, seems to carry certain preconceptions about it. It is associated with evil, terrorism, anarchy, crime. Truly, it has been mistaken for many things.

Why? Because the media has a tendency to twist the meaning of this word. And the public follows the media blindly. Why does it twist the meaning?
To make us the criminals! We make their money, because we are the story they sell. There is nothing that I can say or show you that will make this word and its TRUE meaning clear enough for you. The best way for you to learn is to get involved in the scene.

:Reportinggirl: WHAT IS THE SCENE?

The scene is anywhere where knowledge is unrestricted, where information is free to flow, where no secrets are being kept, where people meet to exchange ideas and knowledge, to converse and learn.

In the 80s the scene used to be a collection of telephone numbers to BBSs. Out of mutual distrust, a global net was born, that we now call the Internet. The internet gave birth to web sites, message boards, ftp sites, and suddenly the scene became much larger, and much more complicated. The scene truly changed.

:doodleDavid: WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE SCENE?

It is dying. Many older masters left the scene and joined the corporations to embrace the profit. Others have been, sadly, assimilated to work for the feds, and are now working against the scene. Many have become administrators and computer security consultants and are now helping the agents.

Some are in prison, but still hold on to their values, and believe. The scene is now shallow in experience. All that is left are documents and data collected from the old masters. But few can understand or interpret these mystical documents. The community was once rich in joy and excitement. It was full of knowledgeable and resourceful people bound together by a common interest and the will to learn. But now all those values and ideals seem to have deteriorated.

When the most experienced masters left, they took with them the vital will to learn and understand. Our community now lacks spirit AND experience.
Today many groups and individuals fight against each other, exposing all of us to a greater threat. The feds profit from our wars. Why do we fight? It is in our nature. We struggle to expose one another and prove who is better. If one is caught, we are all at risk.

:pepsimaN: HOW CAN I BENEFIT THE SCENE?

You can benefit the scene in many ways. You can embrace it, learn its ways. Understand and think. Learn and practice. Listen, but be patient. Never get angry if someone won't teach you the first time you ask him/her. With experience, comes paranoia. The experienced do not share knowledge with those who are irresponsible with power, or with those who are not familiar to them or are new to the scene. Have patience. Be in the scene long enough, and soon everything will connect together.

Benefit the scene. Many are able writers. Write FAQs, documents. Teach. Understand the scene, know your group. But never join a group to gain respect or admiration because you are in it. Join a group to form new friendships and the chance to learn more and practice what you have learned. Earn your position or your group's name. Actions speak louder than words. But never destroy, harass or annoy others. Explore. Learn by exploration and gain experience, but always remember to cover your tracks. When you have enough experience construct something that will simplify a process or benefit the scene and its individuals, and then give it away for free to everyone.

By demonstrating generosity, you will earn your name and title. Once you leave the scene, do not take all the answers with you, instead leave them behind for the next generation. They will ask the same questions you once asked, and wondered why you did what you did.

:CokeCan: WHY AM I DOING THIS?

Now that you have read so far, you are ready and deserve to understand the most consequential thing about this wisdom that you wish to acquire. *It was never about using this knowledge to commit crimes, or gain respect, or to show off, or to hurt anyone or anything.* It is about the process of learning that is responsible for development of character and personality in an individual. It is about being with people who demonstrate similar abilities and bear identical values. Along this path there are certain rewards. You will find opportunities to bond with people. Don't miss these opportunities, as some of these people will prove to be your life long allies. You will uncover rewards and understand my advice: Never believe or trust all you hear; Think quickly, but talk slowly; When you lose, do not forget the lesson; Before breaking the rules, make sure you understand them and the risks involved; Great achievements sometimes involve great risks. Share your knowledge! It will be a way for you to achieve immortality. One must first gain wisdom. It is time for you to start.

:PixelLucario: HOW DO I START?

In my life I have encountered two kinds of people. Those who get a small taste of what the scene is like, directly search for a fast way to appear to have learned and earned their stay. Once there, they leech scripts and newest exploits to harass others in order to feel smart. The other kind does not directly seek the scene and its respect but rather has a natural interest that will push an individual forward without any need for material gain, respect, title, name or bragging rights. This kind of an individual is able to wake up one morning and realize what he has become along the way. In his path one was never tempted by sudden urges to show off power fed by wisdom and knowledge. One never ran someone else's scripts and programs to show off. Instead one read good code and wrote good code. One worked on all operating systems, understood their advantages and disadvantages. Many languages were familiar to him.

When one would think of a program, he would not consider it and confine it in terms of one language, but remember it in terms that are common to all languages. Naturally, his mind worked globally and universally, never confined to one language but to infinite possibilities of all. You must abandon your hope of a fast and easy way, because there is none. Forget about your mission, forget about why you are reading this. Instead, develop an interest and pursue it. Disregard your wish to become one, but never neglect your wish to learn. By doing this you will never risk taking the easy way. Those who do, cant see past the confines of their limited knowledge and are now called 'lamers' and 'code kiddies'. They try to get into the scene too quickly, and soon believe they are a part of it.

They believe that what they know is all there is to it. But they will never be as powerful or resourceful as you could be. They will never contribute to the community and never fully experience it or understand it. There are so many of them. So many. Now you understand why The scene is so shallow. But every time one of them stops and asks: "hey wait a minute... I would like to know more about this tool that I am using. Who made it and how?, How can it be improved and made more powerful, or faster or better?".

Every single time an individual stops and asks these questions that comes purely from his own interest, there is still hope! Fate plays tricks on us all, and we can never know what can become of us or others. Maybe this individual will become a demigod tomorrow? Maybe not...; The point is that he should be helped. His questions should not remain unanswered, because tomorrow he may be the one providing answers. When do YOU start? Don't rush, there is ample time to do it all. Read books. Try different operating systems. Establish a kind of an experience that will help you connect new pieces of information you obtain.

It takes many years, even with interest and devotion. Those who lack either only wish to convey knowledge for others to know that they understand. Do not get trapped in this. I never said it was easy, it takes a lifetime.

:JahySmug: WHERE DO I BEGIN?

Begin to learn languages. Learn HTTP so you can contribute to the scene. Learn C, so you can understand Unix. Don't use Visual Basic to code nice GUI to run your scripts. By doing this, you provide tools for lamers. Once you understand languages, think in similar terms of all languages, but use individual ones to interpret your thoughts in different ways. Escape from Dos and Windows, and get Linux. Learn how to manipulate it, and make it do what you want it to do. Notice its power and flexibility.

Get to know shells, and understand some basic networking. Now, it will be time for you to wander the net in search of what you want. About the net: The net has many parts, it has usenet, www, irc, message groups, mailing lists, ftp's, gopher telnet and others. From experience you will be able to tell which ones will benefit you the most, and which ones will be the least accessible to you. Avoid IRC, it is equivalent to an addiction. It's a place where lamers beg for scripts and newest exploits, and OPs show off by providing to them. You will learn nothing here. Avoid websites with flaming skulls and other garbage. They are made by lamers for other lamers to use.

All that you will find here are ancient tools, that no one on that site can understand or explain to you. You will learn nothing there either. Instead look for things that astonish you the least. Look for plain text, because plain text is what you want. Here, you will learn the most. Read! Download RFCs (request for comments). Know each one by heart.

Read FAQs written by other members of the community. I can not advise you which ones to read and which ones to ignore. There is always a controversy and debate about this topic. You will have to read and judge them yourself. They are indeed all helpful and useful, but useful to whom? a 'lamer'? a 'code kiddie'?, a criminal? or someone else, someone beyond all this. Get books, unix manuals, books on protocols, everything you can get your hands on. Never throw away anything. You never know what might come in handy one day. But don't use books to learn programming. To code well, one must read well written code and write efficient code. Imitate the masters. There is no better way to learn. Seminars wont help you, books won't help you. You may study programs written by masters, but never use someone else's tools! Write your own tools, understand how they are made, how they work and what concepts they involve.

Don't distribute them to those who will abuse them, but to the few who are willing to learn, just like you.

globogymface SHOULD I VISIT CONS?

Get to know the physical part of the scene. Go to cons. Know where they are and when. Cons are always good places to meet new people, and learn new things. Find out about cons as well. Don't worry about not knowing anyone. With time you will. Remember the names of the speakers, they have been around for a long time. They can give you advice. Knowledge does not necessarily have to be your ticket in, but the WILL to learn could be. Be kind, and respectful to others. If you are lucky, they may provide you with great help, when you are ready.

PePsIcAnpixeled CONCLUSION

Remember: If you are just starting, don't go out on the net right now and leech texts, rfcs, manuals and other technical handbooks because you probably won't understand them.

You will get stuck.

And then the easiest escape is to use pre made tools and scripts. But what are these good for if you can't understand them? The only thing left to do is harass others and feel smart for having the power that tools provide. But this power you can't even understand. You cannot recreate it, improve it or learn its unique concepts. Your knowledge will be confined and you will have no more will to learn. This is exactly how lamers are born. Learn programming. Learn Unix. Read material for you level of understanding.

Don't rush. Leave everything else for later, when you are ready. Attend comp.sci at some university for a couple of years. Turn your hobby into a career. Get paid for what you like to do, but never work against the scene. Return to it later and observe how it has changed.

:Hulksterx2: KNOW THE SCENE

Know the people in the community. Know the names of people who invented great things and then gave them away for free to benefit mankind. Know the names of people who sold out, and those who embraced the media to sell for money. Know the names of those who are now in prison held without a trial. Know those who have written great documents and remember their words. I have given you all the advice I can. The fate of the community now rests on YOU.
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Voya [voya@idirect.ca]
 
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