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Hackerteen Volume 1: Internet Blackout

samzenpus posted more than 6 years ago | from the read-all-about-it dept.

Book Reviews 69

stoolpigeon writes "Hackerteen Volume 1: Internet Blackout is an interesting new project, a graphic novel being published by O'Reilly. What makes it interesting is not just that this is a rather new direction for O'Reilly but that this is, to my knowledge, a rather unique publication in that it seeks to educate teenage youth about an array of issues ranging from privacy, free software, security and the impact of politics on personal freedom as it relates to the use of technology. Making topics like that exciting, and understandable to a young person may sound like a tall order, and I think it is." Read below for the rest of JR's review.This book has an extremely interesting background and it is worth taking the time to look at. Hackerteen is not just a name, it is an edutainment program created by the Brazilian company 4Linux. The program consists of distance learning and instructor led classes that allow students to progress through a series of colored belts. Currently the classes are only available in Portuguese and on site only in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The Hackerteen site says that materials in Spanish and English are being developed now.

The curriculum, according to the site, arose out of a desire to deal with three problems.

  1. Excessive time spent by young people playing computer games on the internet.
  2. Young people committing digital crimes on the internet.
  3. A lack of professionals who work with networks and computer security.
To deal with these issues they teach, "computer security..., entrepreneurship and hacker ethics." This graphic novel is a reflection of the desire to communicate all of those values through a fictional story about Yago, a high-school junior who transitions from compulsive gaming to becoming a skilled member of the Hackerteen team.

Part of the mission for the book is introducing a wide array of issues and terms to the reader. Often a topic will or word will be accompanied by a footnote with a url for a hackerteen page holding an article containing relevant information. Not all the links are as informational though, with many linking to a graphic without much information. Hopefully these are placeholders for articles like the two that I've referenced here. A number of interesting topics are brought up, and a reader could research them on their own, or they would allow for good discussion points in a teaching setting. The only issue is that sometimes the placement of topics is a bit forced. A humorous example of this is when a teen-age girl who needed help choosing a web-cam, just a few pages later asks her aunt for money to attend a course on the Creative Commons.

The artwork is acceptable. It is at times a bit awkward, at others pretty solid. I think that it as at least as good as much of what I read when I was a teen, probably better than much of it. What is exceptional compared to the illustrated works of my youth are the materials and production quality. The cover is glossy, the colors are vibrant and the pages are going to stand up for a long time. Of course the flip side of this is that quality like this does not come cheap. The cover price is $19.99 and that's a bit steep for young kids today.

I think though that this has the potential to be a useful educational tool. I am hoping that some schools are willing to pick up that cost to allow their students access to this material, but a part of me thinks that may be a bit optimistic. I would suggest that for those of us who may hold some of these issues dear to our hearts, and who are sometimes dismayed at the attempts by many to influence the populace in a different direction, this may be a worthwhile investment. I think buying a copy or two, for relatives, a local school or library may pay dividends in the future. It is quite possible that for many this will be their first introduction to many of the issues presented in the book.

I loaned my copy to a co-worker. He and his kids read it. For them the introduction to Linux, the ideas of FOSS and others were brand new. When he returned the book my co-worker told me that he had never heard of the creative commons and I explained what it was. His boys he said were interested to see how the story would develop moving forward.

It's not easy making issues of freedom and safety exciting. The story is sometimes a bit over the top and the writing is sometimes weak. Internet savvy kids are going to struggle with some of the events, not due to glaring technical problems, but because some of the events are just a bit silly. That said, the options I've seen explaining these topics wouldn't just be 'o.k.' to a teen, they would be downright painful. So should we wait until the kids grow up to start teaching them what matters? I'd say this is definitely worthwhile and hopefully as the series moves forward it will only get better.

I think it is worth noting that while Marcelo Marques is the author, the book does list the full team who created it. They are Hugo Moss (story supervisor), Joao Felipe Munhoz (artist), Fabio Pontes Ramon Felin (colorist), Rafael Kirschner (colorist),and Ricardo Bomfim (colorist).

The slashdot review guidelines describe a 7 as "A good book; better than merely adequate, though not outstanding." The price, short length and acceptable but not great artwork put it there in my mind. I'm 39 and a younger person may not be as critical with the art or writing. It is good, and has great potential for impact. With a little bit better artwork, some stronger writing and if possible a bit lower price point this could be really fantastic. I'm looking forward to seeing how Volume 2 turns out.

You can purchase Hackerteen Volume 1: Internet Blackout from amazon.com. Slashdot welcomes readers' book reviews -- to see your own review here, read the book review guidelines, then visit the submission page.

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Little Brother (5, Informative)

julesh (229690) | more than 6 years ago | (#23812997)

this is, to my knowledge, a rather unique publication in that it seeks to educate teenage youth about an array of issues ranging from privacy, free software, security and the impact of politics on personal freedom as it relates to the use of technology. Making topics like that exciting, and understandable to a young person may sound like a tall order, and I think it is.

See also Little Brother, a novel by Cory Doctorow that treads similar ground.

Re:Little Brother (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813071)

yep author, check little brother out...
great novel
available online, too

Re:Little Brother (5, Informative)

andrewd18 (989408) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813073)

You can download a copy of Little Brother at no charge due to its Creative Commons license.

http://craphound.com/littlebrother/download/ [craphound.com]

Re:Little Brother (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 6 years ago | (#23821983)

You can download a copy of Little Brother at no charge due to its Creative Commons license.
1. Download a few thousand copies

2. Sell them for $10 each on eBay

3. Profit!

Re:Little Brother (3, Interesting)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813103)

Sounds to me like it would not only work well at educating teens, but also many other people. Probably be a good read for anybody who's at all interested in the subject matter, and even those who aren't, as long as they have an open mind about the material.

Re:Little Brother (2, Insightful)

dc29A (636871) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813841)

Sounds to me like it would not only work well at educating teens, but also many other people. Probably be a good read for anybody who's at all interested in the subject matter, and even those who aren't, as long as they have an open mind about the material.
Yes, because the favorite pastime of teenagers is reading books instead of playing World of Warcraft.

Re:Little Brother (1)

sinserve (455889) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814459)

Yes, my nephew would rather read comics than play video games, and his brother has an Xbox 360 AND PS3.

Re:Little Brother (4, Insightful)

aleph42 (1082389) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813303)

Yeah, I thouht the same, but it sounds like this one will be less "action" driven. I read little brother, and there's a number of thing it gets wrong IMHO. Anyways, we need books to explain those things, so a second one is still usefull.

As for "little brother", I think it tries too hard: every boingboing craze is in it, including caspaceine, "freegans" and something which looks like a pro-drug stance (it's targeted at parents, to give to their younger kids; probably not the best place to debate drug legalisation).
The explainations of technical stuff are generaly well done, but sometimes they are just forced (the whole network of trust thing doesn't make any sense in the story, and takes too long to explain).

Also, there are a few bad things of bad taste, like having a turkish immigrant talk in broken english, though he has been in the US for 20 years, and the hero (indirectly) calling himself a terrorist at the end, when the whole point is that he suffered from anti-terrorist laws without being one.

But it still has a huge positive point: it's all GPL (and you can read it for free). So we could even make a better version from this one!

Re:Little Brother (2, Informative)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813367)

I'm a fan of Doctorow and have read most of his stuff - working through the overclocked stories right now, and have not read big brother.
 
This one does have some over the top 'action' but only in one spot that I can think of off the top of my head - a politician type guy being arrested at gun-point. At a press conference. But knowing Doctorow, Hacker Teen is probably a lot more family friendly in the US. (Not judging either way - just observing.)
 
It would be interesting to see if the hackerteen stuff ever went the same direction as Doctorow- putting their money where their mouth is so to speak and allowing free distribution, etc. With O'Reilly involved I'm not sure what the odds are in that regard.

Re:Little Brother (2, Informative)

Lennie (16154) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814721)

Creative Commons != GPL

Re:Little Brother (1)

aleph42 (1082389) | more than 6 years ago | (#23818837)

Yes, sorry for the mistake.

This book is distributed under a Creative Commons AttributionÂ
NonCommercialÂShareAlike 3.0 license
He precises that this means you can remix it.

Pro-drug? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23821715)

Sounds like a rather balanced viewpoint to me...

I don't really drink much. There's been beer and pot and ecstasy at the parties I've been going to since I was 14, but I hated smoking (though I'm quite partial to a hash brownie every now and again), ecstasy took too long -- who's got a whole weekend to get high and come down -- and beer, well, it was all right, but I didn't see what the big deal was.

Re:Little Brother (0, Offtopic)

Jansingal (1098809) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813635)

ok, fine, but why does this have to be stated in a NOVEL.
Slashdot books should be non-fiction!!!!!

Re:Little Brother (1)

eredin (1255034) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813979)

Little Brother is a great book (so far). Our family reads together, and both kids (f17, m13) and my wife are absolutely hooked. My kids would like to be a little nerdier than they are (and my wife is the artsy type), and they all just keep asking "is that real? Can you really do that?" It's great to find works that actually cover exactly the topics you want to cover with your kids. Hopefully Hackerteen goes in the same direction. I'll be looking for it.

My thoughts (-1, Flamebait)

lancesnyder (1099535) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813025)

stupid.

Bifurcation? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813037)

Howcum his tech books are so good, but his news show is suxzor?

Hmm (1)

Kamineko (851857) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813099)

Colorist, are they? They should be ashamed of themselves.

ALERTO (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813217)

The above poster is making a pun against the word 'colorist', mixing it up with 'racist', to chide the people involved in the book: he's not saying the colors are crap! (Which they are btw.)

er... (0)

PunkOfLinux (870955) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813105)

What the fuck? O.o this is what the internet is FOR...

Yawn (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813117)

This perpetuates the myth that teens are the most savvy, computer-wise.

Yes, copying and pasting all those tricked-out HTML layouts on your MySpace page and downloading from iTunes == "amazing hacker"

Re:Yawn (4, Funny)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813213)

*sigh*. If I had a dollar for every time some teenager asked me for "codes" or "script" to pimp out their MyCrap page I'd be a millionaire. When I was that age I used a real browser... like Lynx. Now if I could just get them to stay offa my lawn...

Re:Yawn (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813327)

Ever consider doing it? Most of 'em will pay you that dollar, or ten, or twenty, or fifty at the least.

Re:Yawn (1)

lmnfrs (829146) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814399)

You could also try giving them slightly buggy code for free with a disclaimer stating they must fix it.

You never know what a little push like that could accomplish.

Re:Yawn (1)

Noren (605012) | more than 6 years ago | (#23938315)

You should try NCSA Mosaic rather than lynx, it has a lot of nice features, like the embedding of images within text! I expect everyone will use Mosaic soon, as it's obviously better, so we can put this whole browser controversy to rest.{/1993}

Quality of drawings (1)

waztub (1166611) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813133)

Not to be picky, but the quality of those drawings really leaves a lot to be desired...

Re:Quality of drawings (4, Insightful)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813175)

You aren't being picky- they will have to ramp up the quality in that area if this thing is going to go anywhere.

Look out! (1)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813275)

Those drawings are made by 1337 haxorz! how dare you question their quality! You will be getting teh haxed soon!

Re:Quality of drawings (2, Interesting)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813329)

But, I thought that was the "in thing"... like iKea and iPods... simplicity over clutter...

But glancing at the cover, it seems to mix 3 different styles of anime...

I'm not sure how "animated" it is, but im hoping that it isnt all comic, I think it would be better if you had like 3 pages of comic/story, as sort of an introduction, and then a page (of 0mG all text) that goes into depth about the subject.

Personally, I don't really see this "going anywhere", I think it would make a better web-comic than a book/comic, plus is seems really "preachy"...

Knowledge we were taught to do good things
And seems directed at like the 8 - 12 ages, yet uses scary 4 and 5 syllable words that will turn a lot of them off...

Re:Quality of drawings (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813477)

It is all comic - graphic novel is what they are calling it. It's a bit short for the term novel, in my mind, but there are no pages with just text - it is all animated.
 
It is a bit preachy at times, not as bad as it could be though. I don't think the vocab would be a big problem for younger kids, though I think the primary target is probably younger teens. In fact my 8 year old daughter thought it was awesome, but didn't really understand all that was going on I think.

Are teens really that far behind on the tech side? (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813147)

With this and Doctorow's new book, I'm beginning to wonder if teens even know about F/OSS (or computers in general). In all seriousness, we have this stuff that gives them simple bites of what is going on (here is the latest, new free software and why it is a good idea to use it), but it worries me that we aren't really teaching them how things work.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (3, Interesting)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813237)

They have to get an introduction somewhere. I'm so immersed in all this stuff - that I forget how many people have no idea. I had a college student this week-end ask me what Linux is.
 
My concern is that people like that wont know about O'Reilly either. But maybe stuff like this will help bridge that gap earlier on. I would really love it if schools, libraries, etc. picked up on this book.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (3, Insightful)

Miseph (979059) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814129)

Yeah, but there really needs to be better introduction to the basics. It's very hard to talk new tech with somebody who can't differentiate between files that are on a local (hard) drive, removable media (cd, SD card, thumb drive) and somewhere on the internet.

I work in a 1-hour photo lab, and I shit you not, I've heard of people insisting that the pictures are "right on their computers" only to find out that they are, in fact, on some internet photo site. Then they usually have the gall to yell at my coworkers and I for making everything so difficult and giving them incorrect information, rather than owning the fact that we gave them the correct answer for the information THEY provided, which was (charitaBly described as) faulty, and that if they had half of a clue what was going on with their own stuff the problem likely would have never come up in the first place.

I'd much rather explain to somebody what Linux is and why it's awesome to a person who can successfully store and retrieve documents from a thumb drive on multiple computers than have to explain why a CD-ROM drive can't burn a CD to somebody purporting to be tech savvy.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813291)

With this and Doctorow's new book, I'm beginning to wonder if teens even know about F/OSS (or computers in general). In all seriousness, we have this stuff that gives them simple bites of what is going on (here is the latest, new free software and why it is a good idea to use it), but it worries me that we aren't really teaching them how things work.
I'll let you in on a secret: no one cares about F/OSS. Sorry to be the one to have to tell you.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813355)

To rephrase what I said (saying FOSS was a mistake, I know), we are only creating more discerning consumers by taking this path. Of course this is a good thing given all of the crap software/spyware/malware/etc. out there (Facebook apps come to mind). But in the end no one is teaching them anything that won't be obsolete in 5-10 years. They need to know that these machines they are at sitting in front of aren't magic boxes, but tools that are to be used (and yes, manipulated).

You may have a paragraph or so about "marathon coding sessions", but that never really teaches them anything outside of our own kitsch. Of course I'm not knocking Doctorow or these guys, they really are the first to step out there in this field (and in this way), but kids crave substance and when they get real substance, they know it. This has the risk of being viewed as propaganda. The real answer is writing something that adults will learn from and then go from there.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (3, Interesting)

east coast (590680) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814167)

But in the end no one is teaching anything that won't be obsolete in 5-10 years.

There, fixed that for you.

On the other points of this discussion:

F/OSS is only interesting to people for two reasons. 1. They like the word "free" 2. They plan on manipulating the software.

Outside of that scope there really is little reason for most people to get excited about it. Evenso, introducing a novice coder to SourceForge is a bit overwhelming and should be avoided.

Another thing I'd like to bring up is that kids today do really seem to be behind the curve simply because the people deciding how advanced kids should be in the measures of education are looking at the wrong skill set to determine where little Suzy and Johnny fall in line. I will never understand why so many Joe and Jane Sixpacks out there are amazed that their kid can text at 15 WPM and think that it means their little brat is somehow tech suave. I have a 16 year old nephew who thinks he's up on the game because he can look up items on NewEgg and decided which one is better. He uses price as the one and only comparison figure. Sadly when I try to pull him inline he gets an attitude about learning what some of the other facts and figures mean because he's been shovel heaps of praise by parents, grandparents and educators for knowing how to create a slideshow of vacation pictures. He doesn't understand anything that's under the hood of the machine but because of the misdirection of his elders he thinks he does. It's gotten to the point that I'm ready to shrug my shoulders and let him spend what little money he earns and make expensive (in his own frame) mistakes. Maybe after going broke buying video cards that gain him a whole 3 FPS more than his current video card will he start to look at the numbers other than the price and decide that it's time to learn the what, wheres and whys of the box sitting under his desk.

I'm sure 30 years ago the same complaints were being filed down at your local garage about kids having cars and not being able to change their own oil.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#23820953)

I've got a third reason: They are sick of having their favorite software not be supported when the new version of their OS comes out.

I won't deny that it happens in Linux, too, but I've seen a lot more niche software just go belly-up when a new OS comes out than Open Source software. And at least the OS software, a user can fix it if the original developer doesn't want to.

In fact, I had something like this happen not too long ago with a fractal generator... There was a new version for Linux of it, but no Windows version. My friend has an irrational hatred of Linux and wanted the Windows version. So I set up the compile environment and compiled the new one for Windows. For a closed-source program, this just wouldn't have been possible.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23821827)

My friend has an irrational hatred of Linux and wanted the Windows version. So I set up the compile environment and compiled the new one for Windows. For a closed-source program, this just wouldn't have been possible.
You are too noble for others' own good. Pearls before Swine... (rolls eyes)

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23822077)

he's been shovel heaps of praise by parents, grandparents and educators for knowing how to create a slideshow of vacation pictures. He doesn't understand anything that's under the hood of the machine but because of the misdirection of his elders he thinks he does

not every driver wants to become a mechanic.

if the geek were honest he would probably admit that he spends most of his time rather far removed from the internals of the machine himself.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (1)

east coast (590680) | more than 6 years ago | (#23824879)

not every driver wants to become a mechanic

In this case he acts like he's already a mechanic. That's the difference.

Don't get me wrong, I don't spit on power users who don't know what kind of RAM is in their laptops. But when they come to me and ask about a possible upgrade and I give them the plain truth and they turn around and go against it to the point of being technically incorrect and roll their eyes when they know they're wrong? That's what burns my ass and that's exactly what he does. He wants to put exactly what he wants into his system but when I tell him that what he's looking at buying won't work in his system or won't accomplish what he thinks it will he sports an attitude. The attitude isn't as much that I'm wrong, it's that he thinks he's more right with no basis and no clear understanding of the first thing he's talking about.

Granted, he is a kid but there are plenty of 16 year olds who know that there are various forms of memory and have the wits about them to find out which one they need for their system. He's not one of them.

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (1)

Jansingal (1098809) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813681)

no, its the adults to read these books who are :)

Re:Are teens really that far behind on the tech si (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 6 years ago | (#23816179)

Since most of them are on teh intertubes these days, you'd expect that the average level of know-how is much lower than back in the days when only scientists and 1337 folks were online.
That doesn't preclude the existence of some that are knowledgeable of course. But I sometimes wonder why it is that the majority on /. seem to be old farts (like me, cough cough) these days.
Maybe today 1337 is to know HTML and Excel formulas?

Not to take anything away from Hackerteen (2, Interesting)

schwaang (667808) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813177)

[this is] a rather unique publication in that it seeks to educate teenage youth about an array of issues ranging from privacy, free software, security and the impact of politics on personal freedom as it relates to the use of technology.


Perhaps you'd be interested in Cory Doctorow's Little Brother [craphound.com] . [Free PDF download or buy the dead tree version.]

It was written for da youth by the editor of Boing Boing, someone steeped in the issues of personal freedoms and identity in the Surveillance Age. Here's the Purblisher's Weekly article. [publishersweekly.com]

Re:Not to take anything away from Hackerteen (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813449)

If you are going to refer to *the* editor of Boing Boing, Mark Frauenfelder is probably a better choice than Cory Doctorow. Doctorow is a contributor.

Re:Not to take anything away from Hackerteen (1)

schwaang (667808) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813705)

If you are going to refer to *the* editor of Boing Boing, Mark Frauenfelder is probably a better choice than Cory Doctorow. Doctorow is a contributor.

Fair enough.

Re:Not to take anything away from Hackerteen (1)

Ocker3 (1232550) | more than 6 years ago | (#23818399)

perhaps you'd be interested in the first comment about this review, posted 12 minutes before this one?

You have a choice: be a victim...or be part of the (1)

stretchpuppy (1304751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813241)

...sol [Connection reset by skeezer]

Worst idea ever... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813255)

I can't wait for this new generation of "ethical hackers" to start tripping our honeypots. Basically it's FUN for 14 year olds to send goatse to a network printer, give teens the tools and watch it happen!

Re:Worst idea ever... (4, Interesting)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813625)

It came to my attention some time ago that there are schools offering what they term "ethical hacking" courses and programs.

How the mighty have fallen if the course has to be named with some l337 speak crap to get anyone's attention.

Now, this might seem off topic, but I dare you to take any of those l337 h4X0rz and show them a line up of say 10 different hammers and ask them to tell you the names of each and what they are used for. The point? Calling all of them hammers or axes is like calling computer security 'ethical hacking'. If you are going to learn something about the field, fucking try to learn the real terminology at the beginning. sigh

An example of how bad this is getting is at:
http://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Topic:Ethical_Hacking [wikiversity.org] where they have an entire page that is bereft of both the phrase "computer security" and "network security" but they did use the word 'university'.

Yes, all plumbers are just plumbers, there are good ones and bad ones, but not white hat plumbers and black hat plumbers. Likewise we don't have black hat politicians. We just tend to call them criminals with political connections.

Yeah, mod me troll for being a grammar nazi or something. It's just irritating to see people take perfectly good language and terminology and flush it down the toilet for something that 'sounds' more hip. iFuck iThat!

Re:Worst idea ever... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23814753)

I don't really see what hacking has to do with computer security. Perhaps you are confusing "hacking" with "cracking"?

Re:Worst idea ever... (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 6 years ago | (#23815435)

Umm don't even breath that kind of thing anywhere near sites like remote-exploit.org

hacking is making the tools and using them as (re)designed

Cracking is misusing said tools

might i suggest that you post directly to the "idiots corner" of the forums on that site if the above information
is new to you?? (this would save the mods there the trouble of moving your posts)

Re:Worst idea ever... (1)

Jansingal (1098809) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813709)

u makinbg me sick :)
I need a pill!

You Fa1l It.. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813483)

would mar BSD's Right now. I tried, United States of

Oh please. (2, Interesting)

LullySing (164221) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813539)

3- A lack of professionals who work with networks and computer security.


There's plenty of those people around. PLENTY of em. They're all being offered shitty frontline tech-support jobs.

The computer industry does need smart people, that is a point i will always concede. But what they WANT is warm bodies to fill positions most of the times. There is a lot of smart people that actually went in computers, only to be destroyed by an industry that always seeks to benefit from education and technical know-how.... and trying to get away ( and succeeding) with not paying them for this. So eventually they give up giving a shit.

It makes it worse when a guy that actually went ahead and got himself an education makes less an hour that most forklift operators.

Re:Oh please. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23813867)

I know many such ex-professionals, highly experienced and knowledgeable, that ended up as Forklift Operators and in other tech-unrelated jobs primarily because they lost the good tech jobs to idiots with "educations".

Re:Oh please. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23814655)

Perhaps the OP means Rio, not Jackson.

Re:Oh please. (1)

T3Tech (1306739) | more than 6 years ago | (#23817875)

Veering a bit off-topic but - This is part of the reason I'm self-employed. Although it's not a whole hell of alot better, at least I get to do more work that actually lines up with my qualifications than I do dealing with cleaning virus-ridden windows machines, diagnosing why there's no display or interweb connection, etc.

There are too many that expect to pay US$15-$20/hr for a networking or security specialist and offshore it's not too difficult to find talent that will glady accept that, no questions, even with the dollar falling.

Re:Oh please. (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 6 years ago | (#23822079)

It makes it worse when a guy that actually went ahead and got himself an education makes less an hour that most forklift operators.
So? If you're worried about the money, stop whining and go and get a forklife licence.

Being clever and hard working does not guarantee you a future of wealth and happiness.

A better name for this book (1)

Plazmid (1132467) | more than 6 years ago | (#23813925)

A Young Hacker's Primer.

Come ON, gimme a break. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23814095)

Any hacker worth his salt (or for that matter, any script kiddie who'd read the Hacker's Manifesto) would never willing buy any of this stuff. No amount of cartoon "Where in the Computer is Carmen Sandiego?" is going to turn a kid into a hacker, or turn a malicious hacker from his/her ways.

137 days till Halloween.... Halloween, Halloween.. (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814311)

Am I the only person who thought the title sounded like a pun on "Halloween" at first?

I'm looking forward to the third book in the series, which will be totally unrelated to the first two, but will educate the reader on how to replace the nation's children with an army of robots.

/ Obscure
// Oops this is not Fark....
/// I don't care!

Authoritas: One Student's Harvard Admissions... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23814319)

There's also Authoritas: One Student's Harvard Admissions and the Founding of the Facebook Era [thinkpress.com] , which should be of interest to teens applying to college. It talks in depth about issues of privacy and computer security. The sources are available on-line.

Not so opaque binary garbage... (1)

marcansoft (727665) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814557)

Funny, they have an example [hackerteen.com] of the "binary junk" that Microsoft Office documents are composed of... except the excerpt is from a .PNG file, a perfectly well documented and open format. pHYs is the physical dimensions chunk and IDAT is the data chunk, AFAIR.

a graphic novel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23814715)

Wow! Our teens are so illiterate they need a picture book to comprehend something.

Stop qualifying superlatives! (0, Troll)

permaculture (567540) | more than 6 years ago | (#23814941)

All these are grammatically incorrect: semi unique, partially unique, rather unique, almost unique, nearly completely unique, halfway unique, uniquish, uniquey, ...

http://www.mckinnonsc.vic.edu.au/la/english/Grammar/index.htm [vic.edu.au]

"Superlatives cannot be qualified. Something is 'unique' or it's not. It can't be the "most unique" or "quite unique." "

If you don't agree, and believe the word 'unique' means the same as the word 'rare', then pray tell what word do you use to mean a thing that is the only example of its type?

Re:Stop qualifying superlatives! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23815195)

...what word do you use to mean a thing that is the only example of its type?
A Singleton

This gave me a neat idea for a comic (1)

rubah (1197475) | more than 6 years ago | (#23815619)

But I always feel weird when this happens, because unless I check thoroughly, the original material will end up being the same thing. And I'm too lazy to check :(

but it's always a neat feeling when you see a phrase (or a book title) and feel like a world suddenly opened up where only you can see it.

Sounded interesting, but then it failed. (1)

Xest (935314) | more than 6 years ago | (#23816683)

I thought the project sounded quite interesting, but then I clicked to read more and saw this:

      1. Excessive time spent by young people playing computer games on the internet.
      2. Young people committing digital crimes on the internet.
      3. A lack of professionals who work with networks and computer security.

Sorry, but it's failed already. Approaching the problem by suggesting teens favourite pasttime is somehow wrong and a problem is idiotic to say the least, it stinks of an arrogant older generation having a problem with "kids today". I'd argue point 2 is rather interesting too, could it possibly be hinting at the download of MP3s, movies and the like?

Before the internet kids used to just watch TV all the time, I'm sure many decades ago they used to go out, and judging from stories I've heard from older folks they did and they used to fire catapults and play cricket, regularly breaking people's windows and the likes in the process. Kids who aren't sat at home doing something nowadays are all too often out on the streets with no parental supervision, plenty of alcohol and a nice bit of vandalism.

Yet somehow kids spending a lot of time playing online games is somehow a problem? At least with something like WoW you're socialising in a way that causes no trouble to anyone else outside the context of the game.

If they want to convince kids to look towards a career in IT security then a better approach would be to integrate what kids enjoy, not fight it. Explain where exploits come from for games, how they're developed, how they can be protected against. Explain why having your account hacked or leaked by the game provider is a bad thing and a severe privacy breach don't approach the topic telling kids how bad they are and how the things they do are wrong in the eyes of the author.

You're not going to engage kids unless you work with them, work against them and they'll ignore you and you'll fail, spectacularly.

Re:Sounded interesting, but then it failed. (1)

famazza (398147) | more than 6 years ago | (#23828309)

I'd argue point 2 is rather interesting too, could it possibly be hinting at the download of MP3s, movies and the like?
In Brazil very few consider downloading MP3s and movies a crime, it's easy to find policeman buying pirate products. You can buy unauthorized copies of any CD at any corner and pay 1/3 the price of a regular CD (about US$ 3). When they (from Hackerteen) say about avoid youngs to commit crimes they are talking about phishing, and internet scams.

NO WAI! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23822037)


"a graphic novel being published by O'Reilly"

O RLY

=D
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