|1) Who is StankDawg?
Well, it is not that hard to find out my docs. I don’t try very hard to hide them, but I am also not going to just give them to you.
Why are you here though? I mean, why would you care about who *I* am anyway? That is the real question isn’t it? Well, I will tell you a little about myself, and then you may decide that you don’t, in fact, care after all!
You are probably here because you either know me, or have heard of me from one of my articles, projects, or some appearance somewhere. That is great, and I welcome you to the site! If you are here because you hate me, or are looking for trouble, go away because I really don’t care what you have to say. If you are here because you *don’t* know me, then hopefully you will get a little idea of what I am about.
I was born in Newport News, Virginia but moved when I was 5 years old. I currently reside in Orlando, Florida but I have lived in 6 different states and have been all over the east coast. I am in my mid 30s (born 9/13/1971) and have been a senior programmer/analyst for some fortune 500 companies (which will remain unnamed) and several Universities.
My main work experience is in Oracle doing PL/SQL programming, but I have direct hands-on experience in C, some old mainframe languages (like easytrieve, and COBOL), numerous report writing tools (crystal reports, focus, etc…), and basic shell scripting. My hobby experience as a hacker includes some minor PHP programming (mostly modifying existing code), very basic perl, HTML of course, and some other assorted custom languages such as WML (wiki markup language). I also studied C++, PASCAL, FORTRAN, BASIC in college so I have enough knowledge of them to jump into any of them with a fairly short learning curve.
I have also attended 4 universities, accumulated almost 200 credit hours of coursework in Computer Science. I originally graduated from the University of Kentucky – JCC campus back in 1992 fresh out of high school. I then took night courses at the University of Louisville for a couple of years while I worked a full-time job at an advertising software company in downtown Louisville, KY. When you take part-time classes like that, it is very difficult to finish a degree, especially since they can change the curriculum requirements anytime that they want which sets your education back. Part time students are not locked into the program and classes may have been wasted. Because of this, I took a job at Florida Atlantic University in South Florida where I was allowed to take part time courses for free. While doing this, I also took some part time classes at a local community college to try to get my bachelors degree faster. I eventually got my Bachelors in Computer Science in Spring of 2002.
Besides the college coursework, I also take many side courses as well. I am a lifelong student and enjoy learning. I got my CEH certification in 2003 and even assisted in teaching the courses as a guest speaker at Intense School in Fort Lauderdale, FL. I take electronics courses at home and frequently buy tutorial CDs for a number of topics to study in my free time.
I have been published in several magazines including 2600 and Blacklisted411, where I am listed as staff writers for each. But I do not only write for these publications, I also proudly support independent zines such as Radical Future, Outbreak, Frequency, and other zines by writing for them as well. I also publish my own printed magazine called BREAK Magazine (Formerly <BR> Magazine) with a lot of help and support from the rest of the DDP. If you haven’t heard of it, you might want to check it out. You are definitely missing some amazing stuff.
In addition to my writing, I also host a weekly radio show called Binary Revolution Radio that airs every Tuesday on rantradio and our own radio server called DDP Hackradio. I have also been on several episodes of Default Radio, Radio Freek America, GAMERadio, the mindwar, and more if I can make the time. We discuss all sorts if interesting topics that may be of interest to those people who found their way to this site.
Unfortunately, print media and radio have their limitations. Sometimes you need to show something visually (and have a little phun while doing it). This is what spawned our TV Show called HackTV. We were the first ongoing hacking video show online, although others try to claim that title. We were slow about releasing episodes due to our real lives and other projects, and lot of other great shows came out. I don’t care who came first or who was inspired by whom. I support them all.
What other projects am I involved in? There are too many to name them all, quite honestly. I have a lot of great friends in the community and we all help each other out on projects whenever possible. My primary project is the Binary Revolution which is the namesake of the magazine and radio show mentioned above. This is a movement of forming a new community of cooperation and respect online without the problems that plague the real world. Most of our projects are group projects from the DDP and are linked from this site and the binrev.com site. More are being worked on and added every single day.
So there it is. My life story…well not really, but that is a good summary of the reasons why you may be here, or may be interested in me and the things that I do. If not, no hard feelings. I am an acquired taste. If you *did* find something here that you found interesting, or something on which you would like more information, please feel free to contact me through this web site or my easily found email address. But if you were simply looking for the easy answer to your question…
Who am I?
My name is StankDawg and I am a hacker.
2) Why Hack?
I was asked the question one time, “Why do hackers hack?” by a reporter who had contacted subzer0. I gave an answer for them, and I just stumbled across it today and was still happy with the answer. I made a couple of minor grammar changes, and I like to share this as my opinion on that question.
“Why hack?” While it is true that many hackers have many different reasons to hack, most of the time it is simple curiosity and a desire for knowledge. This type of knowledge is something that can only be gained from sitting down and trying things with no other intent than to gain a better understanding of something. This is the reason that most hackers hack. Certainly, there are other reasons, it would be naive to say otherwise, but hackers who have intent to harm others or do damage are very much frowned upon by the majority of hackers. A few “bad” hackers may have done some bad things, but the large majority of hackers (easily more than 99%) are good people who have an intellectual curiosity that cannot be taught in any school because only the hacker them self can even understand the question. It has to be experienced and self-taught.
This leads to the idea of how the hacker community gets a “bad rap”. Just like any other community, there are “bad” hackers. These are in the minority, but the mass media only becomes interested in sensationalizing these stories of hackers doing bad things. Hackers helped form the Internet and the computer industry as we know it! Hackers have written operating systems, stormed forward with the open source software movement, fought for privacy and digital rights, and many other positive contributions to society. More people should be made aware of the good that hackers do. There are bad policemen, bad reporters, bad judges, bad congress people, and unfortunately, bad hackers. But why does the term hacker get thrown under the bus as though *ALL* hackers are bad? Not all policemen are bad. Not all congress people are bad. Not all reporters are bad. Why is the myth perpetuated that all hackers are bad? A criminal with a computer is a criminal first and foremost.
3) Why did you start the Binary Revolution?
Probably my biggest and most well known project is the “Binary Revolution” which encompasses many areas. People always ask about how it was started, so here it the long-winded answer.
The Revolution actually started over on stankdawg.com. It was around 1999-2000 and I had been published in 2600 magazine a couple of times. I decided, in the spirit of hacking and sharing information, to start a web site to share my articles and research. I registered stankdawg.com and began working on it and using it as a tool to teach myself some of the new web programming languages. Looking back at some of the early versions of this site will show you how bad I was at HTML and design and quite frankly, I still am!
I put up some basic forum software that was a combination of a notebook for me to post interesting things for myself and place for feedback on my articles and hopefully collaboration with others. I was overwhelmed with the support that the site got and began to find it awkward to have a site sitting on my handle at StankDawg.com as the url. It felt very vain, and I knew that I was only one small part of a greater community. I brought this subject up to some of my close friends in the DDP (my hacking group) and we agreed to register a new site and make it emphasize the hacking community as whole. After some brainstorming, Rax and I came up with the name “Binary Revolution” and we decider to register binrev.com as a shorter url.
But the Binary Revolution is not just a forum or a web site. It is actually a mindset and a series of web sites, projects, and people that focus on the hacking community. We wanted to check the single minded notion of many hackers and their elitist attitude and try to take the negativity out of the hacking scene. We wanted to create an atmosphere of positivity and focus more on productive education and helping the community to grow.
The new site started with as few as a couple of hundred hits per week to as many as 20,000 unique visits per day and the site is still growing. We rolled some of our projects off onto sites of their own causing some of the traffic to be dispersed to different servers and domains so adding up the stats today would be tougher, but the main forum site alone still gets tens of thousands of unique visits per day and has ranked high enough to break into one of the top 100,000 web sites according to alexa rankings.
If you want a place where nubies and veteran hackers alike can share a positive and enriching environment, you should join the revolution!
4) What is a “StankDawg”?
What is a “StankDawg?” anyway? Where did you come up with that?
First of all, I know that it is a strange sounding name! Most people just call me “Stank”, “Diggy”, or, on occasion, “Stinky”. you can feel free to use any of the above.
First of all, no, I do not stink! Well, I am sure that I have my days. If you catch me after a little streetball or something I might be a little bit ripe, but I digress. I didn’t actually choose the name because I stink or anything like that. Actually, I had gone under many other hacking handles throughout high school. I did some things that I am not proud of at this stage of my life and wanted to distance myself from those old handles. When I came back, I did not want to be associated to my old handles so I needed something new.
I wish I could tell you a better story, but basically I just came up with a silly unique name of off the top of my head and I just went with StankDawg mostly because it sounded funny. And “Stank” may sound like “stink” but actually the term means “nasty” as in, I am not someone that you want to mess with. The handle fits because I am like that stray dog that you see in the alley. I am mostly harmless, just trying to survive, but if you mess with me or corner me, I have no problem biting a hole in you.
The Digital DawgPound came shortly thereafter. I was on the high school computer programming team and we went to the sweet 16 computer programming competition. We did very well (1st place in the region) and while celebrating our victory while riding home, I jokingly referred to my fellow teammates as the “dawg pound”. Later, during college, when I rejoined the hacking scene, I recruited some of my friends and officially formed “The Digital DawgPound” as a local hacking group of friends. We have always referred to it as “the DDP” for brevity.
Upon graduation from college (the first time) many of us went our separate ways and I continued hacking and writing articles for 2600 and I took the DDP online. I recruited some great people from the friends that I met online and we began collaborating on the many projects that you see today. The roster may change, but all of us are good friends and most of us talk on a regular basis to this day.