What’s your personal definition of “hacking”?

Posted on Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 in News by the machinegeek

Caleb Kraft from Hackaday writes, “we’re going to announce an international hack day on august 11th. I’ve asked a bunch of people to contribute their personal definition of “hacking”. Care to share yours?”

Hackaday via the contact form.

This entry was posted on Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 at 4:19 pm and is filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

12 Responses to “What’s your personal definition of “hacking”?”

  1. John Small says:

    hacking := intense usage of a keyboard connected to a computer

  2. anon says:

    Hacking when you boil it down , is free access to knowledge. You can hack a pc, you can hack a person. You can hack an idea. Some of the best known hacks don’t even use a pc, but a telephone.

    Learning something someone decided you shouldn’t be allowed to = hacking.

  3. Destate9 says:

    Modifying an existing “end-item” product while emplying reverse-engineering techniques. Often discouraged by the manufacturer of the product being modified

  4. Hack : A clever way of solving a non-trivial problem

  5. Zeke D says:

    Striving for deeper understanding and application of new knowledge and technologies. Ranks up there with love and compassion for desirable human qualities.

    Not surprised that creepy authoritarians have attempted to pervert the noble definition. Notice the folks that wish to disparage and demean hackers are typically the type folks that don’t produce anything, instead aligning with parasites and sociopaths that revel in violence.

  6. Chuckt says:

    Some of you are kids and don’t even know the history of the term “Hacker”. Programmers older than me said the book “Hackers” by Steven Levy show the first use of the word “Hacker” or where it originated from. You can find both the book and the e-version on Amazon but the Kindle version is cheaper.

  7. Complementing on Chuckt’s comment:

    if you ever meet someone who was part of the TMRC, they will be glad to tell you the story of it ;)
    (check out )

  8. naviquattro says:

    hacking ≡ understanding

  9. Trebu says:

    My definition of Hacking is better defined by the reasons I do it.
    “Because I Can”
    “Because It Hasn’t Been Done”
    “Because I haven’t Done It”
    “Because They Said I Can’t”
    “Because They Said It Couldn’t Be Done”
    “Because I Can Improve It”

    Most Importantly:
    “Because I Can Learn From Doing It”

  10. grubernd says:

    improving something by making it do things the original creator had not in mind.

  11. magetoo says:

    1. Modifying or extending something in a creative and non-obvious way; not necessarily to solve a specific problem, maybe just scratching an itch. (And not necessarily limited to hardware or software either.)

    2. A more culturally specific way of saying someone is working on something – hacking on that project, or this piece of code. (That usage seems more common in the web dev community I guess?)

  12. rsdio says:

    To me, a “hack” has always been a quick and dirty solution to a problem, due to lack of time to do a proper job, lack of documentation on the core technology being utilized, or lack of permission to use the tech for the purpose at hand. A “hacker” is the person who performs said “hack.” This connotation started in the late eighties for me. It certainly includes social engineering (hacking people) or simple login access as well as full-blown electronics-based solutions.

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