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This article was posted to the Usenet group alt.hackers in 1995; any technical information is probably outdated.

Re: Hacker FAQ (please comment and help fix)

Article: 7668 of alt.hackers
From: (Tommy Usher)
Newsgroups: alt.folklore.computers,alt.hackers
Subject: Re: Hacker FAQ (please comment and help fix)
Date: 15 Apr 1995 13:50:17 GMT
Organization: SouthEast Information Sys
Lines: 42
Approved: For Your Eyes Only
Message-ID: 3moiup$
Status: RO

In article <3mnon9$>,
Sean 'Captain Napalm' Conner <> wrote:
>In article <3mng38$>
(Peter Seebach) writes:
>>Does anyone have any suggestions for how you tell Ken Thompson
from Bill
>>Gates, in the general case?
>  Now, hey there ... Bill Gates wasn't that bad of a programmer (when he
>actually did programming) and was able to fit quite a remarkable amount of
>code into a 4K space (and still leave some free).  And one could say
that he
>is successfully able to hack management and deals as well.

Ah, you came so close, but you just missed it.  There, in the parentheses,
"when he he actually did programming," that's the key!  Gates quit
programming, he abandoned his first love, so to speak.  The man was talented,
of that there is no doubt, but he loved business more.  Now, as a counter
example, take the Woz.  He left Apple for a while, then came back, but
insisted on being "just an engineer."  Now he is teaching computers
to kids.
The man wouldn't sell out his true love.

>  Still not sure if I like the guy myself, but he does keep you on your
>toes.  But I'm not here to sing the praises of Mr. Gates (heavens no).

Nope, wouldn't recommend that, not at all....

>  But, to your question:  How to determine the Good Hacker from the EL33TE
>D00DZ ... unfortunately, it requires programing ability on the part of the
>manager, but asking the hacker to provide sample code he's written and
>explain why he wrote it and how he wrote it might be a good idea.  I don't
>know of a single Good Hacker that won't jump at the chance to show off his

Definitely!  Of course, some of these EL33TE D00DZ won't be able to produce
anything, since some of them barely know BASIC.  I know I would never hire a
programmer without seeing sample code.  And I am not sure I would be all that
quick to go to work for someone who didn't request it.  And who didn't know
enough to ask why I did something a certain way.
| Tommy Usher  No Frills Software | Lubarsky's Law of Cybernetic Entomology: |
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