Read my writeup of the HOPE 2006 conference, in reverse chronological order.
A bunch of geeks sitting around Union Station as the bomb squad rolled up. Clockwise from the top, Elwing, Lyssa, Justin, and Seele.
The outside of Union Station in Washington, DC. At the bottom of the image you can see a police van pulling to a stop. Here is the outside of the complex, showing all of the amazing stonework.
Lyssa and I sitting on the train.
Elwing on the train headed to New York City.
Seele and Justin on the train.
A single lonely tree in the middle of New York City, surrounded on three sides by buildings. Taken from our room at the Hotel Pennsylvania.
The hammocks set out on the mezzanine for people to hang out or sleep on. Here, people are listening to the televised panel and reading.
The obligatory establishing shot of the crowd at the lock hacking seminar.
The Key of TOOOL on stage at the lock hacking seminar.
Another group of geeks at the lock hacking seminar. From left to right are Lyssa, Vlad (in the back, looking like someone's just dropped an ice cube down his back), Elwing, and Genetik. Behind all of them are the crotches of three convention staff members.
An abstract pattern projected onto the walls of the A room. Part of the Sixth HOPE logo also projected onto the walls.
A few photographs of the ham radio rig at HOPE, FCC designation H6N: One; two; three.
Lyssa studiously picking a padlock.
Some of the many practise locks in the lockpicking village.
A close-up of the Sixth HOPE special edition lockpicks made by TOOOL.
Two folks from across the pond at the Lockpicking Village.
This pile of empty boxes and flats represents how much Jolt they sold by the end of 20060721. The pile was cleared away by Saturday morning and begun anew.
I don't know what the hell this thing is but someone left it in the public cluster all through the con.
A Sun Ultra 5 workstation set up in the public cluster with an antique Zenith Data Systems serial terminal acting as its console: One; two. The hostname of the machine was 'chiron', and someone had managed to hose it so badly that it wouldn't boot up unless you hammered it around until it went into single user mode. Unfortunately, I didn't have a Solaris boot disk or the root password, so I wasn't able to fix it.
Seeing a sign like this at a hacker con should frighten you.
Some photographers were nice enough to pose for me in the Village.
Is it just me, or do you find it funny that TOOOL locked up their gear during their off-hours given what they were teaching people to do?
Sometimes, what seems like a good way to test your skills isn't, as this gentleman found out when he couldn't get the handcuff open. Thankfully, he was able to unlock one of them, but the other remained stubbornly locked. That's what happens when you break a key off inside the lock.
This guy, though, was more successful.
A live demonstration of rapping, the technique of using a 999 key and a small hammer to get the lock to release. The trick is to rotate the 999 key at just the right moment to open the lock. If you've got the time and the right tools you can make your own 999 key. Finding the right metal files can be a little challenging but isn't impossible.
The computer museum at HOPE this year was much smaller than it used to be but they had some pretty rare stuff this time around, like a TRS-80 model 1 (which was compromised shortly after booting up), a number of early laptop computers, a Dade Murphy special that you could play Zork 1 on, a Challenger 4P running the game Asteroids, a Sol Terminal hooked up to an IMSAI 8080 (which you'll remember from the movie WarGames), and a random computer that I forgot to get the make of.
We even had performance down in vendors' alley by this woman who was tap-dancing and juggling at the same time. Upon reflection, her resemblence to Ragged Robin is striking.
A closeup of the mascot of this year's convention, drawn by 'Fred'.
Gweeds' Hacking the Palate panel: One; two.
Gweeds and a volunteer try to crack the seal on a vacuum chamber with a screwdriver. Inside were the strawberries that he'd marinated in vodka and rose water.
No hacker con would be complete without a blowtorch being used on something.
Pouring puree'd pistacios and bergamot.
Jennifer holds up a hacked can of Jolt. The rupture in the side was fixed with duct tape and half of the contents of the can were replaced with rum.
The network admins slept in a pup tent in the public terminal cluster to keep everything up and running.
A subtle hint that maybe I brought too much stuff to a con.