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Al Gore didn't invent the internet.....

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Mike Bossy


...and the Wachowski brothers didn't invent the matrix. Everyone know William Gibson did. :) Tonight he was in Seattle doing a book signing for his latest book so I showed up and waited in line for over an hour to get my ratty old copy of Neuromancer signed along with a copy of his latest novel.

Growing up his books really got me into computers to a whole new level. After reading Count Zero I totally got into the hacker scene of the day. Of course it was using my 1200 baud modem on my 64 but it was still sweet. The whole while I totally felt like I was jacking into the 'Net.

Back then all you needed was a phone line and the local access number for Datapac (in Canada, Telenet and Tymnet elsewhere). My very first coding was creating some scanners that went through all the possible addresses looking for machines. The good old days. I never did anything beyond exploring. It was fun enough finding machines and figuring out what default logins they left around. Being in Canada there was far less chance of getting in any kind of trouble. The never was an "Operation Sundevil" in the great white north.

In a way I feel sorry for today's kids. Sure with the internet being everywhere there are many more opportunities for exploring networks and systems but the flip side is a stronger chance of being caught. I agree anyone trying to deface sites or steal data should be caught but I think there is something to be learned by just exploring. Maybe once everyone gets transitioned to Internet2, or whatever the next-gen super fast and auditable 'net is we should keep the existing network up as a wild west. Free for exploration and learning. A true digital wild west with no laws or borders.

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That's quite a dream, and would be really cool! :)

Unfortunately, I'm part of that younger generation being brought up on the tough internet we know today (currently I'm 18). I'm always so jealous of the people like yourself who talked about the old days and all of the cool stuff you could do "back then". *sigh* If only there were time machines when people knew the difference between good and bad hackers and not lumped them up as all hackers are bad hackers.

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