Hack­ers are ex­perts who help to solve prob­lems

OpenSource For You - - YOUSAID IT -

I would like to bring to your no­tice the in­cor­rect us­age of the word ‘hack­ing’ in the March 2015 edi­tion of OSFY. Hack­ers are pro­gram­mers who push tech­nol­ogy to the fore­front, and are keen on solv­ing chal­leng­ing prob­lems. Kindly re­fer to the fol­low­ing sources of in­for­ma­tion: Free as in Free­dom at http://www.oreilly.com/open­book/free­dom/ Sadly, mar­ket­ing peo­ple have come up with the term ‘eth­i­cal hack­ing’ for self­ish rea­sons and have cor­rupted the mean­ing of hack­ing. In en­gi­neer­ing cir­cles, ‘hack­ing’ is a good thing, and is a way to im­prove code and solve prob­lems.

In the ar­ti­cle ‘ModSe­cu­rity Solves the Manager’s Dilemma’ on Page 61, left col­umn, the au­thor used it in the right con­text, “…as op­posed to ‘hack­ers’, who don’t per­form such ma­li­cious stuff,” but sub­se­quently, in the right col­umn, used it in­cor­rectly: “Around 73 per cent of or­gan­i­sa­tions have been hacked through in­se­cure Web ap­pli­ca­tions ...”

There are a few train­ers and au­thors who claim to be ‘Cer­ti­fied Eth­i­cal Hack­ers’, which is a mis­nomer and a false trap that peo­ple fall into. Those of­fer­ing cour­ses on ‘eth­i­cal hack­ing’ nei­ther teach the ba­sics nor how the se­cu­rity tools are im­ple­mented. I would ap­pre­ci­ate it if you could make peo­ple aware of the ter­mi­nol­ogy, as it is fun­da­men­tal to the free and open source soft­ware work cul­ture. It is the crack­ers that com­pa­nies need to be wary of.

—Shak­thi Kan­nan, shak­thi­[email protected] ED: Thanks for point­ing this out. We will cer­tainly en­sure our au­thors use this term cor­rectly.

We are look­ing for­ward to ar­rang­ing one ses­sion in the com­ing month for Linux begin­ners, for which it would be great help if we could get some sup­port from OSFY. The main pur­pose of this event is to in­volve more stu­dents who are not familiar with the Linux OSs (like Ubuntu) and pro­vide them with some open source al­ter­na­tives to Win­dows based soft­ware.

It will be a great help if OSFY could sup­port us by pro­vid­ing some re­sources or good­ies that we can share with our stu­dent par­tic­i­pants. The event can help us to make stu­dents aware about open source tech­nolo­gies, and th­ese re­sources will mo­ti­vate stu­dents to learn about and ex­plore Linux.

—Hitesh, hitesh.par­[email protected] ED: Thanks for the words of ap­pre­ci­a­tion. We aim to con­tinue pub­lish­ing well-in­formed ar­ti­cles so that our read­ers get to know ev­ery­thing about open source. It re­ally feels great to know about your ef­forts in pop­u­lar­is­ing FOSS. We are happy that OSFY in­spired you to set up this com­mu­nity. We do sup­port such events by way of a me­dia part­ner­ship. You can get in touch with us at os­[email protected] efy.in with more de­tails about the event.

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