Thursday, February 2, 2017 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Things Every Hacker Once Knew

Eric S. Raymond:

This document is a collection of facts about ASCII and related technologies, notably hardware terminals and RS-232 and modems. This is lore that was at one time near-universal and is no longer. It’s not likely to be directly useful today - until you trip over some piece of still-functioning technology where it’s relevant (like a GPS puck), or it makes sense of some old-fart war story. Even so, it’s good to know anyway, for cultural-literacy reasons.

4 Comments

Treating racist survivalist crank Eric Raymond as the gatekeeper of what is and is not canonical "hacker", and what it means to be "culturally literate", is a mistake.

Disagreeing with Eric Raymond's politics, which I certainly do, seems an odd reason to dismiss this rather anodyne list which is not asserting to be "canonical", and is rather presented as a very specific time capsule of history....

Nah, I think the first commentor has it right. I get annoyed whenever I see his name. Seeing it here was disappointing.

To be clear, his "politics" are *racism*.

And if you're the kind of person who is capable of leaving "politics" out of every technical discussion because the world has been fair to you, then you should also consider the fact that he is an extremely bad "hacker" by his own standards. E.g. read this post in which he clearly thinks he is very smart, and I defy you not to feel dumber by the end: http://esr.ibiblio.org/?p=1705

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