Day 2 of 23c3 – the ccc congress in Berlin
I arrived late at the first day so day two was my first day at the congress. When asked why I am here my basic answer is: To meet people (again) which I know from IRC and Usenet like 10 years ago.
The Chaos Computer Club is an institution in Germany – for good and for bad. Think EFF with a more hacking approach to things and add distrust to anything especially authorities. (Yes, I know, it is not the same, but kind of). 23c3, this years congress, does have a variety of interesting sessions as well as a lot of sideevent in the hall.
And – hacking. Yes. I will leave my laptop at the safe – some people called me paranoid, but if there is a place where traffic most defenetly is logged and sniffed, it is here. I have done some notes on some of the things I have seen and will try to put them down later, but for now just some impressions.
If there is a word to describe the congress setup the only thing which comes to my mind is: a lot of boys on a school presentation of their science projects. And I do not mean that in a bad way.
Imagine (older and younger) boys playing around with led, with lockpicking, presenting their own written projects or just hang around in a room which reminds me of pictures of gaming parties – just that there are laptops not desktops. There is a shy joy (or sometimes more open) in seeing that other people are interested in this as well. There is a 3D pong, and some legos for the youngsters.
And of course if you brought your own DECT mobile phone from home, oyu can listen to the audio from different rooms if you like. And get your own RFID Sputnik.
I have to admit I do feel a bit like a suit in a group of geeks – and you know how much of a geek I am myself – but one of the sessions yesterday was about if open source needs professional marketing. I missed the slides, but the discussion was basically what you expected it to be: Geeks feeling threatened by marketing that their baby is taken away and sold. ;o)
One of the things I like is that the event goes deep into the night – and starts late. Although I am late now (doh -if you set your mobile phone to silent it will also be silent in the morning for the wakeup call!) they tend to start at 10, more like 11:30 ;)
Btw, if you want to have a look Streams are available too. (and if you live around the Congress Center, you could watch it on television as well ;)