Saturday, May 19, 2012

Hacked Off

If you are not familiar with it, hacked off is an old expression that denotes being rather upset over something.  Kinda like ticked off—only different.

Truth be told, it is probably an expression that only someone at the end of a three-day drunk having some issues with an uncooperative bartender would likely use, but it goes fairly well with the topic at hand.  For it greatly upsets me to hear newscasters contributing to the dumbing down of America.

What I am talking about in this particular case is hearing the software engineers at Facebook being referred to as hackers.  For by [definition]: Computer hacking is broadly defined as intentionally accesses a computer without authorization or exceeds authorized access.

In all fairness, the definition that I am referring to does not appear to be chiseled in stone.  For according to the [Wikipedia article] on the subject: Hacking means finding out weaknesses in a computer or computer network and exploiting them, though the term can also refer to someone with an advanced understanding of computers and computer networks.  Hackers may be motivated by a multitude of reasons, such as profit, protest, or challenge.  The subculture that has evolved around hackers is often referred to as the computer underground but it is now an open community.  While other uses of the word hacker exist that are not related to computer security, they are rarely used in mainstream context. They are subject to the long standing hacker definition controversy about the true meaning of the term hacker. In this controversy, the term hacker is reclaimed by computer programmers who argue that someone breaking into computers is better called a cracker, not making a difference between computer criminals (black hats) and computer security experts (white hats). Some white hat hackers claim that they also deserve the title hacker, and that only black hats should be called crackers.

On the other hand, what generally comes to mind when you hear the term, hacker, being used, and wouldn’t it be advantageous for the bad guys to have no distinction placed between their nefarious intentions and those of legitimate programmers?  It does give you something to think about—doesn’t it?

Oh, and in regards to Facebook stock, look for the price to start heading south in a hurry not all that long from now.  For as was addressed in that Nightline segment, if Facebook yields to the demands of serious investors/traders by adding more and more advertising, it will fade into oblivion like MySpace, and if Facebook doesn’t yield, those serious investors/traders will dump their holdings.

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