The Last HOPE: Social Engineering

Here it is, my slightly delayed final post about The Last HOPE. I have a tentative interest in the Social Engineering themes that were explored there. I see this as a sort of “How to win friends and influence people” for misfits. (I include myself in this category). Which is not to say that it’s an entirely antisocial practice.

Of course there were talks on prank calling and other activities which exploit most people’s tendency to trust others and take their actions and words at face value. I have to admit, sometimes this is hilarious, even if it does give me slight pangs of social irresponsibility. Here’s an example of one my favorites from classic (aka print) bOINGbOING: Carla crank calls a cryogenics company. (Nothing to do with HOPE, it just cracks me up).

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The Last HOPE: Hacker History

The history-oriented panels at HOPE were very interesting, especially for someone like me who was kind of new to the scene. I am particularly interested in the aspect of history that pinpoints the people and moments where someone looked at something, ignored the expected mode of interaction, and made the creative leap to invent a whole new way of seeing, thinking and using the thing.

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