Notes from DEFCON and DEFCON Kids

I've been posting lightly around here for the past week, as I've been at DEFCON, where I gave a speech. I brought my whole family -- wife, daughter, and parents -- and the kid got to do some lockpicking workshops at DEFCON Kids, the astoundingly bad-ass kids' computer literacy program run alongside the main event. I was run off my feet (in a very good way) at the event and haven't yet gotten enough of a handle on it to write something coherent, but my wife Alice has a good writeup of our experience there, with special emphasis on the DEFCON Kids axis-of-awesome (my wife was Education Commissioner for Channel 4 for some years before quitting to do a startup and has seen every educational tech approach under the sun, DEFCON Kids blew her away) and, separately, Katy Levinson's stupendous, semi-drunken, vodka-fueled, obscenity filled virtuoso engineering talk on the practical difficulties of building and operating robots.

Update: Katy Levinson adds in the comments, "Also, if you have a moment, please help us save Hacker Dojo, a wonderful hackerspace and the first home of Pinterest. Hacker Dojo is currently in danger of being shut down by the city."

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    1. Cyborgs in that someone has an accident during the process that costs them a limb, and they decide to graft on their robots project in its place?

  1. Hello! DEFCON 20’s talk isn’t up yet but DEFCON 19’s talk is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Drk3Dz3_yLE (skip the first 5 minutes, the dudes had been shouting for me to take my shirt off and it kinda frazzled me so I was kinda boring).

    Also, if you have a moment, please help us save Hacker Dojo, a wonderful hackerspace and the first home of Pinterest. Hacker Dojo is currently in danger of being shut down by the city. http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/384590180/an-events-space-and-a-design-studio-for-hacker-doj

    Thank you!

    1. “the dudes had been shouting for me to take my shirt off”
      Why do i find myself continually embarrassed of my gender?

      1.  Don’t worry, we all look like shit when compared to the lowest denominator. You can’t let the dregs of humanity get you down or you’ll never get anything done :p

      2. Coincidentally, I’m continually embarrassed by your gender too, whichever one it is.

        Anyway, I was there at the Rio too, but up in the room watching via (the frequently broken) DEFCON TV (Is Quicktime streaming EVER a good idea? Really guys?), and thought that Katy’s talk was rather… well…  mediocre.  Not bad… just boring.

        Perhaps if -I- were drunker it might have been more interesting, but I ended up watching the SIGINT talk on track 1 instead.

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