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See Wikipedia’s guide to writing better articles for suggestions. This article needs additional citations for verification. The hacker culture is a subculture of individuals who enjoy the intellectual challenge of creatively overcoming limitations of software systems to achieve novel and clever outcomes. What they had in common was mainly love of excellence and programming. They wanted to make their programs that they used be as good as they could. They also wanted to make them do neat things.
They wanted to be able to do something in a more exciting way than anyone believed possible and show “Look how wonderful this is. I bet you didn’t believe this could be done. The Jargon File, an influential but not universally accepted compendium of hacker slang, defines hacker as “A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems and stretching their capabilities, as opposed to most users, who prefer to learn only the minimum necessary. As documented in the Jargon File, these hackers are disappointed by the mass media and general public’s usage of the word hacker to refer to security breakers, calling them “crackers” instead. The word “hacker” derives from the seventeenth-century word of a “lusty laborer” who harvested fields by dogged and rough swings of his hoe. Lightning Ellsworth, it was not a word that the first programmers used to describe themselves. In fact, many of the first programmers were from engineering or physics backgrounds.
There was a growing awareness of a style of programming different from the cut and dried methods employed at first, but it was not until the 1960s that the term hackers began to be used to describe proficient computer programmers. Some common nicknames among this culture include “crackers” who are unskilled thieves who mainly rely on luck. Before communications between computers and computer users were as networked as they are now, there were multiple independent and parallel hacker subcultures, often unaware or only partially aware of each other’s existence. The Glider, proposed as an emblem of the “hacker community” by Eric S. These sorts of subcultures were commonly found at academic settings such as college campuses. Over time, the academic hacker subculture has tended to become more conscious, more cohesive, and better organized. The concentration of academic hacker subculture has paralleled and partly been driven by the commoditization of computer and networking technology, and has, in turn, accelerated that process.
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Many of the values and tenets of the free and open source software movement stem from the hacker ethics that originated at MIT and at the Homebrew Computer Club. Access to computers-and anything that might teach you something about the way the world works-should be unlimited and total. Hackers should be judged by their hacking, not bogus criteria such as degrees, age, race, or position. You can create art and beauty on a computer. Computers can change your life for the better. Hacker ethics are concerned primarily with sharing, openness, collaboration, and engaging in the hands-on imperative. Hack value is the notion used by hackers to express that something is worth doing or is interesting.
This is something that hackers often feel intuitively about a problem or solution. An aspect of hack value is performing feats for the sake of showing that they can be done, even if others think it is difficult. Using things in a unique way outside their intended purpose is often perceived as having hack value. A solution or feat has “hack value” if it is done in a way that has finesse, cleverness or brilliance, which makes creativity an essential part of the meaning.
While using hacker to refer to someone who enjoys playful cleverness is most often applied to computer programmers, it is sometimes used for people who apply the same attitude to other fields. The Boston Globe in 1984 defined “hackers” as “computer nuts”. In their programmer subculture, a hacker is a person who follows a spirit of playful cleverness and loves programming. The programmer subculture of hackers disassociates from the mass media’s pejorative use of the word ‘hacker’ referring to computer security, and usually prefer the term ‘cracker’ for that meaning. Complaints about supposed mainstream misuse started as early as 1983, when media used “hacker” to refer to the computer criminals involved in The 414s case.
In the programmer subculture of hackers, a computer hacker is a person who enjoys designing software and building programs with a sense for aesthetics and playful cleverness. Others did not always view hackers with approval. Hackers were influenced by and absorbed many ideas of key technological developments and the people associated with them. Most notable is the technical culture of the pioneers of the Arpanet, starting in 1969. Many programmers have been labeled “great hackers”, but the specifics of who that label applies to is a matter of opinion.
Within the computer programmer subculture of hackers, the term hacker is also used for a programmer who reaches a goal by employing a series of modifications to extend existing code or resources. In this sense, it can have a negative connotation of using inelegant kludges to accomplish programming tasks that are quick, but ugly, inelegant, difficult to extend, hard to maintain and inefficient. In non-software engineering, the culture is less tolerant of unmaintainable solutions, even when intended to be temporary, and describing someone as a “hacker” might imply that they lack professionalism. In this sense, the term has no real positive connotations, except for the idea that the hacker is capable of doing modifications that allow a system to work in the short term, and so has some sort of marketable skills. In a very universal sense, hacker also means someone who makes things work beyond perceived limits in a clever way in general, without necessarily referring to computers, especially at MIT. That is, people who apply the creative attitude of software hackers in fields other than computing. In yet another context, a hacker is a computer hobbyist who pushes the limits of software or hardware.