Claire sez, "Today on OMNI Reboot: architect and history buff Pablo Garcia digs through Renaissance history to discover that hacking is a mindset that dates back four centuries. Johannes Kepler was a hacker! Edward Mercator a proponent of the hands-on imperative! And more!"
Traveling to the Azores in 1589 under orders from Elizabeth I, Wright broke Mercator’s code with practical, hands-on experience at sea. Combined with his mathematical training, he produced tables with data and instructions for constructing a more accurate cylindrical projection. More than a new, more accurate map, Certaine Errors in Navigation was—like Kepler’s Rudolphine Tables—a computer for producing your own map. Wright’s hack gifted sailors with abilities beyond sea-borne experience. Instead of Mercator’s consumers, they were now self-sufficient cartographers at sea.
Wright understood the Hacker Ethic’s hands-on imperative, to the benefit of all who used his tools. He reminisces in the preface to Certaine Errors that through the expedition he “was first moved… to divert my mathematical studies from theoretical speculation in the Universitie [sic], to the practical demonstration of the use of navigation.” To wit, Wright went from thinker to hacker.
Edward Wright reverse engineered, improved, and shared a secret code. You may not have heard of him before, but he is one of history’s great hackers; a perfect embodiment of the Hacker Ethic.
HACKERS OF THE RENAISSANCE [Pablo Garcia/Omni Reboot]
Scott Edelman writes, “I interviewed George R. R. Martin at a Thai restaurant on Episode 42 of my Eating the Fantastic podcast (MP3), and after I returned home, remembered I’d also interviewed him back in 1993. After digging out the tape, I couldn’t resist incorporating his amusing admission about ‘a fantasy novel I’ve been working […]
Zero-knowledge proofs are one of the most important concepts in cryptography: they’re a way to “validate a computation on private data by allowing a prover to generate a cryptographic proof that asserts to the correctness of the computed output” — in other words, a way to prove that something is true without learning the details.
Retroworks’ $18 decoder rings don’t have much by way of cryptographic robustness (they compare disfavorably to the cipher-wheel wedding rings my wife and I wear!), but they’re not a bad way to introduce the littlies in your life to the idea of habitual secrecy. (via Red Ferret)
The current web development landscape is rife with buzzwords and technology that gets abandoned almost as soon as it’s made. If you’ve never written a line of code before, it can be hard to figure out what’s coming, what’s here to stay, or how to get ahead.This Beginner Web Development Bundle is a great place […]
The Fader Stealth Quadcopter from TRNDlabs packs incredible flight performance into a package small enough to land on your phone screen, and it’s available now in the Boing Boing Store.The Fader’s six-axis gyroscope module gives it perfect balance in the air. This makes the onboard 720p HD camera all the better for shooting amazing flight […]
Although fully autonomous vehicles aren’t yet allowed on public streets, they are poised to dominate the roads in the not-too-distant future. But before that happens, Apple, Google, Uber, and other companies now investing in self-driving tech are going to need talented developers that can account for the dizzying array of factors at play when a […]