Have a Great Life! Stories about People
Who Use Hacking to Do Good
From: "Paul Grodt"
To: Carolyn Meinel
Subject: Good to know the HH list is still alive
Date: Fri, 16 Dec 2005 15:04:35 -0500
I've been following your writings since I was in the 9th grade,
at least, as I can remember when GtmHH 2 came out. I have to
say, thanks largely to you, I became focused in my interest in
computers and computer security. Now at long last I am graduating
from college, and just last week I was given a job offer as a
security engineer, evaluating client software to be submitted
for Common Criteria certification. I'm very excited to get started,
and I plan to move on to begin a masters program in CS as soon
as possible. You showed me a middle line, where I can keep both
my ethics and my criminal record intact, while learning as much
as possible about the inner workings of real-world computer systems.
I'm curious as to what direction I would have taken without your
Thanks again for everything,
Carolyn replies: Paul told me it
was OK to post his email along with his address so that today's
so that the spambots will have a hard time harvesting it.) Chances
are good that Paul, in turn, will inspire several kids to have
a great life. When I was a kid, several scientists loaned me
science books and journals, sat down with me and talked things
over. They made a big difference in my life. I'm paying back,
as best as I can. what they gave to me and so many other kids.
From: Dan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Carolyn Meinel
Subject: It's All Your Fault (Thanks)
My name is Dan, and during my junior year of high school I
found your site, www.happyhacker.org and became an avid fan.
At that time the Internet was fairly new to me, but your site
spurred an already budding interest in computers and an introduction
to Linux (which, incidentally, is the largest time absorbing
sinkhole I ever discovered). Your site prompted the purchase
of nearly $700 worth of computer books by the time I graduated
and at least twice that in hours reading them.
I continued my education with a degree in computer science and
during a torrid, multi-year stage of forgetfulness that I feel
had something to do with beer-induced comas and other forms of
debauchery, the happyhacker site fell by the wayside. The last
time I visited happyhacker, I had forged an email that you posted
on the "It Sucks To Be Me" page (I continued my education
with a degree in computer science and during a torrid, multi-year
stage of forgetfulness that I feel had something to do with beer-induced
comas and other forms of debauchery, the happyhacker site fell
by the wayside. The last time I visited happyhacker, I had forged
an email that you posted on the "It Sucks To Be Me"
- the first one and it took me at least a half an hour to find
that), so you can see I have some catching up to do. :-)
During college I had worked for a legal company as a part time
IT tech, but with official papers in hand, I was promoted to
god-status. The old admin has since quit, leaving me to manage
the IT department and boss around the n00bs.
If you have read through my ramble so far, I'm impressed - and
trust me - I'm getting to a point here. I felt that I owed you
a sincere thanks - the tips and information on your site guided
me toward a successful path, that may not have been so forthcoming
if I hadn't stumbled upon happyhacker while trying to circumvent
school computer security (we all grow up).
So kudos for what you've done and keep up the great job!
Carolyn replies: Dan did 99+% of
the work of making a success of himself. He's a perfect example
of why I got this site going. Nothing feels better than to have
contributed a tiny bit to someone who is making the world a better
place -- and having a great life.
More "Have a Great Life"
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