Difinition confirmation (please read)...

From: Sellam Ismail <dastar_at_ncal.verio.com>
Date: Tue Aug 3 23:45:38 1999

On Wed, 4 Aug 1999, Jason (the General) wrote:

> I need the following word defined/confirmed....
> Hacker
> According to my dictionary, 'hack' means "to chop with exceptional force",
> "a violent cough", or "a horse let out out for common hire"...
> Same dictionary... 'hacker' "one who hacks" (no - really?....), or 'a person
> who is inexperienced or unskilled at a particular activity' example is "A
> Polo hacker".

Here's what The Hacker's Dictionary defines it as:

"hacker: [originally, someone who makes furniture with an axe] n.
    1. A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable
    systems and how to stretch their capabilities, as opposed to most
    users, who prefer to learn only the minimum necessary. 2. One who
    programs enthusiastically (even obsessively) or who enjoys
    programming rather than just theorizing about programming. 3. A
    person capable of appreciating {hack value}. 4. A person who is
    good at programming quickly. 5. An expert at a particular program,
    or one who frequently does work using it or on it; as in `a UNIX
    hacker'. (Definitions 1 through 5 are correlated, and people who fit
    them congregate.) 6. An expert or enthusiast of any kind. One
    might be an astronomy hacker, for example. 7. One who enjoys the
    intellectual challenge of creatively overcoming or circumventing
    limitations. 8. [deprecated] A malicious meddler who tries to
    discover sensitive information by poking around. Hence `password
    hacker', `network hacker'. See {cracker}.

    It is better to be described as a hacker by others than to describe
    oneself that way. Hackers consider themselves something of an
    elite (a meritocracy based on ability), though one to which new
    members are gladly welcome. There is thus a certain ego
    satisfaction to be had in identifying yourself as a hacker (but if
    you claim to be one and are not, you'll quickly be labeled

(from http://codeflux.com/hacker/?query=hacker)

I think this is a very good definition.

> Here's my definition: "One who adapts an existing piece of computer (or
> other type) of hardware to suit one's needs or to improve it without
> instruction from the original manufacturer."

This is also a functional definition, but a subset of the overall
definition of a "hacker".

Sellam Alternate e-mail: dastar_at_siconic.com
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Received on Tue Aug 03 1999 - 23:45:38 BST

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