Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

    (If you're just here looking for the Ninja Badge assembly video, it's here: http://vimeo.com/5981950 )

    This post is broken into two sections - the party, and the story about building the badge, and how it very nearly didn't happen. If you're just looking for information on the badge, scroll down to that section.

    -- The Party (or, how we learned to stop worrying and go off-site.)

    Each year since DEFCON 7, Ninja Networks has thrown an party of sorts at DEFCON. Over the years, we've always tried to step it up year to year, making sure each year offers a little more than the previous year. What started as thirty kids in a room at the Alexis Park with a stripper has certainly turned into something more of a DEFCON tradition, and we're happy to be a part of it.

    After being unable to throw an event at DEFCON 16 due to issues with the hotel, we knew that coming back this year meant we needed to really bring something more to the table than we had in previous years. A skybox with free booze is fine, but we really wanted to break away from the typical "hey-lets-get-a-solo-cup-full-of-booze-and-mill-around-aimlessly-in-a-loud-dark-room" party that is all too common at DEFCON. That was fun when we were teenagers, and there's certainly still a place for it, but we thought it was time to do something a little more.

    We really wanted a nice, attractive venue with a full bar, dedicated staff, room for technology exhibits, outside smoking areas, lots of seating, quiet areas for talking, and quiet areas for talking. Yes, quiet areas for talking is in there twice. Being unable to hold a normal conversation in a skybox party always bothered me.

    Those needs, along with our general distrust of the Riviera when it comes to private events, along with their lack of a quality venue on-property, meant going off-site, which was a big deal for all sorts of obvious reasons. It meant finding a venue that was extremely close to the Riviera, as well as providing painless shuttle service to get there, and hoping people would be smart enough to do the math and realize it takes just a couple of minutes to travel 2500 feet to the new venue around the corner. Thankfully, people were in fact smart enough to realize this, and happily got on the shuttles.

    We chose the Artisan Hotel, right behind Circus Circus. Depending on traffic luck, it took between 5 minutes and 10 minutes to get to the Artisan on a shuttle, and we ran multiple shuttles constantly all night. We expected about 250-300 people to come to the event, and to our great surprise, more than 750 people showed up, almost 500 with Ninja Badges and about 250 with either real or fake "+1" passes (more on that later.)

    We timed it, and it literally took about the same amount of time to walk from a room in the Mediterranean tower to the skyboxes as it did to drive around the block to the Artisan. It was a few minutes longer if we hit all the lights, but generally, it was very very fast.

    Needless to say, we were thankful that people realized this, and got on the damn shuttles. :)

    The venue itself was an old favorite of ours - somewhere we usually went to decompress after the actual Ninja Party. We figured it would be a great venue for the event, and thankfully it worked out very well.

    stits put together a nice gallery (appreciate the gallery comment, stits):

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/stits/s...7621948315896/

    Vissago has some great shots in his gallery as well, and also grabbed a nice panoramic:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/vissago/tags/ninja/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/vissago...7621937065178/

    We did screw a few things up - we did not get all of the technology toys working mostly due to venue limitations. Two big ones were the SMS Wall and the ShadowSmoke machine. The SMS Wall didn't work because there's no T-Mobile coverage at the Artisan (total fail on our part) and the ShadowSmoke machine simply wouldn't fit with the amount of people we had there.

    One more thing that didn't occur was the XeroBank live demonstration. They were going to do demo of their de-anonymizing of anonymous networks, but the place was so busy that we couldn't put their kiosk anywhere without running the risk of it being knocked over and/or otherwise futzed with. So, we just scrapped it.

    Overall, the event was a huge success, and also answered the question "Can off-site parties at DEF CON work?" We sincerely thank everybody that came out, very cool of you all.

    Now, as far as the fake +1s go - when we determined that we'd need to do "plus ones" this year, we made some nice flyer-style plus ones, knowing damn well that we'd have some fake ones show up.

    I don't really mind if someone tries to make *themselves* a fake party invitation in good fun, that's in the spirit of DEFCON. What I do mind is when people make them in *bulk* and hand them out, or worse... sell them. That part really bothered me. We apparently had a guy selling fake Ninja invites, and at least one guy for sure that had a huge pocketful of them, standing in the lobby at the Artisan, handing them out. They weren't perfect, they were actually noticeably shorter than the actual invites, and once we saw them it was easy to detect them from that point forward.

    I ended up confronting the guy in the lobby, and asking not so politely that he hand over the remaining fakes. He handed me about 50-ish fakes, from a pack that clearly had contained many more. Ultimately, I think he was honest with me about the situation, and we had a frank conversation, and in the end I invited him back next year and told him I'd be happy to hand him a badge myself. He apologized and that was enough for me, we're square as far as I'm concerned. He also told me that the Kinkos on Paradise was full of people trying to make good fakes, which I thought was interesting.

    In previous years we did holograms to minimize the fake pass issue- and next year we'll probably return to something like that to minimize the financial impact of bulk fakes. Having one-off fakes from time to time is in good DEFCON-style fun, but the bulk aspect sucked. :(

    But in any event - even with the fake pass issue, it was a great event, and we really appreciate everybody that came out to be a part of it. Thanks so much.

    I'd especially like to thank those that contributed by either walking up to me and handing me cash, or putting money in the jars on the bar. This helped tremendously, as it does every year. We really appreciate the consideration, it matters. Thank you.


    -- The Badge (that almost wasn't)

    For DEFCON 17, Ninja Networks designed and built a electronic badge to be given out as the event invitation. Historically we've done everything from stickers to holograms to etched aluminum. This year, we figured if we were going to dramatically step up the event, we should step up the badge as well.

    The following is the story of how the badge came to be, and how we damn near screwed it all up.

    It started as an idea fleshed out on bar napkins at an Irish Pub called "The Field" at Toorcon in 2006. Myself, Caezar, cnelson, avarice, and a smattering of ninjas and friends were talking about what we could do for a really exceptional party invitation for next year's DEFCON. We developed two ideas over the course of about 5 hours and 50 drinks - the complex idea that we may be using next year, and the relatively simple one we used this year.

    Executing the idea this year started in February of 2009. Myself, cnelson, and cstone began the process by fleshing out the idea more thoroughly, and developed a preliminary list of components that would be necessary to build it.

    The plan in February was to obtain most of the components from China, build prototype boards domestically, then ship everything to China for assembly. Cstone would rope in Amanda Wozniak aka "Woz", a local friend and MIT alum, to help with the design process. Woz would be more or less in charge of the hardware design itself, and cstone would be assisting Woz as well as writing all of the software.

    At the beginning the badge had additional functionality that is not currently present on the final model. The badge had USB storage, as well as a radio receiver that would synchronize with the nationwide Atomic Clock signal, allowing every badge to run perfectly in sync. Our budget was about $12 per badge, depending on USB storage considerations.

    Over the first few months, we sourced components, and started experimenting. One of the first things we found were the LED displays known to us as the "YETDA"s, after their manufacturer. These 16-segment HIOX-format displays were affordable and in-budget, and we eventually found someone in China to sell them to us.

    Around April, we settled on a Freescale processor (MC9S08QE8), and a Temic U422B for atomic clock sync, and had a few options for the remaining ICs we'd need. The radio chip would have an all-in cost of less than fifty cents, and the processor was cheap. We were on-budget.

    Then things started going wrong.

    China started lagging and changing prices on us and taking more time than we allotted. Vendors accepted payment then couldn't ship components. Most of the delays were related to flash chips for the USB storage. This started eating away at our available time. Making things worse, Woz and cstone were in Boston, while cnelson and myself were in Los Angeles. Woz and cstone, under pressure for time and working entirely unpaid, had to let some deadlines slip, and ultimately made some judgment calls on changes to the badges, thinking they had no other option. This was the result of a systemwide communications failure between the entire group. A rare incident with this group, and a costly one.

    In the end, two weeks before DEF CON, we did not have any badges. Moreover, about 10 days out I got the news that the radio sync would not work because of interference issues, and it was unlikely the USB storage would work, because of the delicacy of the circuit. Also, our per-badge cost was now approaching $20, and due to obvious time constraints, we had no time to have the badges assembled.

    When I got that call, I just about shit myself. I'd been somewhat insulated from the finer details of the badge construction up until this point, and that was a mistake. We all should have been talking about the details on a daily basis, and we should have been shifting time-consuming logistics processes (such as sourcing components) from the build team in Boston to the project management team in Los Angeles, so that Boston had some breathing room. In reality, Boston was overwhelmed and we had no idea how bad it was until it was too late. Collaboratively, the whole team including myself blew it in this department. I should have been more aggressive with Boston about timing and deliverables, and in turn they should have been all over me about taking logistics tasks off of their shoulders so they could actually get things done. The problem that kept this from running like a normal job was that everybody had a bit of a Laissez-faire approach to tasks assigned to other people, due to the fact that everybody involved was doing this as friends in their spare time. We couldn't just boss each other around. That really changes the project execution dynamic, and you've gotta make the best of it.

    So, old plan out the window, and new plan. Badges would be assembled entirely by hand in the US, as the parts came in. The surface mount components would be placed on the badges using solderpaste and a hotplate from Target, instead of a reflow oven. The through-hole components, meaning the YETDA displays and the battery holder, would be inserted entirely by hand, and each badge would have every single pin soldered by hand (about 175-ish pins per badge, times roughly 500 badges, or 87,500 individual joints.)

    Also, hilariously, UPS had left the batteries (all of them) at the wrong address in Boston, and they had been apparently stolen. So we had no batteries.

    This was literally one week to the day before DEF CON.

    Fortunately, the batteries were eventually recovered, and the custom PCBs, (designed by Woz in Eagle PCB and built by Advanced Circuits) showed up in Boston without incident. Work began on badge assembly in Boston.

    http://vimeo.com/5981950

    Things were looking great! Assembly was working and badges actually functioned! I was sitting at Panera Bread eating a sandwich and thinking that we're gonna be ok.

    Then I got a phone call with bad news.

    Cstone had recruited a huge group of volunteers to come by and help insert the displays and begin soldering. It was expected that with 15 people going all weekend, we would be largely done by Monday. That's when the bad news came - the holes in the PCBs were almost exactly the same size as the pins on the YETDAs, with no coning. This made the insertion of the displays a highly precision job, because if any of the pins were even -slightly- bent, the display would not go in. What was supposed to take 5 seconds took 5 minutes.

    I'm a pretty mellow dude as anyone will tell you. But at this particular moment, time is of the essence, and I'm standing in the Panera Bread parking lot talking loudly and quickly into my blackberry, brainstorming crazy options and pacing quickly, probably looking like a crazy person. At that moment, an -actual- crazy person walks up to me in the parking lot, hands me a $20 bill, and says to me, "God told me to give you this, and tell you that everything is going to be alright." Then the dude gets in his truck, and drives away. This actually happened.

    Whether or not somebody's god had anything to do with it I can't say, but ultimately we did come up with a completely crazy-ass plan to get the YETDAs inserted and get these badges done in time for DEFCON. I also made $20 bucks.

    This YETDA problem and its ultimate resolution would end up defining DEFCON for me entirely, bringing about one of the most inspiring on-the-spot hacker community responses I've seen since I started coming to Con.

    The first thing that happened is that cstone and his amazing crew assembled 150 badges (out of 500) in Boston over the weekend before DEFCON. On Monday before DEFCON, the rest of the badges (350) and related components were shipped to Los Angeles via FedEX. They arrived on Tuesday. All day Tuesday and Wednesday, a huge group of volunteers manually inserted YETDAs into each badge, a process taking approximately 10-15 minutes per badge.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/ninja_n...7622003770924/

    However, we did not solder most of these badges. We didn't have any time. Eliot from Hackaday knocked out a handful, but come Wednesday evening, just hours before DEFCON, we only had about 160 finished badges, most of which were in Boston, and 340 badges with all of their components, but in need of soldering. That's about 61,250 solder points to be done by Friday. It's Wednesday night.

    I got to DEFCON on Wednesday night with about 200 unfinished badges from LA. The other 150 would come at 2pm on Thursday, brought into town by cnelson.

    What needed to happen was something of a small miracle. We needed to get a huge group of volunteers to show up somewhere with soldering irons and solder 61,250 joints by hand between mid-day Thursday and mid-day Friday.

    So what happened? This happened:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/ninja_networks/3808887871/

    We sent out some twitters and text messages, as well as spreading the word verbally, and people came out of the woodwork like crazy. We had so many people show up to solder that we actually had to go out and buy more soldering irons. At one point, there were 15 people simultaneously soldering in one room at the Riviera. Most of these people I had never even met before, they were just cool people that were willing to devote hours of their day to helping us put these things together.

    This really put a smile on my face, partially because I was experiencing the effects of lead poisoning, but mostly because it reminded me why I started coming to DEF CON in the first place. It felt like an old 2600 meeting from the early 90's, or just an old computer club meeting. It is one of my top three favorite DEF CON moments of all time, without a doubt. "Ninja Badge Solderparty 2009" is definitely going be remembered and retold as DEF CON lore among those that were there, and I hope everybody took away the same positive feeling from it that I did.

    In the end, we had 500 functional Ninja Badges to give away. Each badge took about 45 minutes of time to assemble, accounting for everything involved. If you have one of these badges, it represents a lot of work by a lot of people.

    Some additional design and assembly photos are here:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/unsynch...7621963707496/

    Wired mentioned it here:

    http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/200...fcon-review/2/

    There's also some good hackaday coverage here:

    http://hackaday.com/2009/08/10/ninja...s-party-badge/

    Woz and cstone did an amazing job on the badges, and they were ultimately a huge hit. They deserve the bulk of the credit for the existence of the badges, along with the hardworking people listed below.

    I sincerely thank everybody that came out and helped. Without all of these people, there would be no badges:

    If you've been left off of this list, please let me know.

    Diego Anzola
    Barkode
    Broker
    Angel Caballero
    Chronomex
    Brandon Creighton
    Nicole Danos
    eyeball
    far_call
    Ashley Renee Foster
    Geoffrey Goodell
    Jenny Green
    James Harvey
    John Hecker
    Fiona Hughes
    KC Kerby
    Licutis
    Jeanette Lim
    Ian Martin
    Emily Melbourn
    Hayden Melbourn
    Jen Murphy
    Chris Nelson
    readiness
    Jim Paris
    Feanil Patel
    Chris Pentacoff
    Eliot Phillips
    Michael Phillips
    Pinguino
    Jeff Pool
    Scott Pool
    rbcp
    Cathy Saxton (Capt. Ahab)
    Tom Saxton
    Michael Scarito
    Sirus (Seattle)
    Joseph Sokol-Margolis
    Wilx
    Jesse Whitworth
    Amanda Wozniak
    Samson Yeung
    zsnark

    XeroBank (http://www.xerobank.com) provided financial support as our primary sponsor. Without that support there wouldn't have been a party or a badge.

    Redwire LLC (http://www.redwirellc.com) donated a huge amount of space and equipment to the Boston team, without which we would have not had badges at all, as we would not have been able to do the surface mount work or much of the initial assembly.

    Technical Information on the badge, including schematics and gerber files, can be found here: http://unsynchronized.org/ninjabadge/

    Now, on to planning next year...
    Last edited by barkode; 08-10-2009, 06:04 PM. Reason: Added additional external URLs.

  • #2
    Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

    I suppose I should read twitter more. I totally would have helped out at the solder party. :)

    Very interesting write up, thanks for posting!

    also:
    "hey-lets-get-a-solo-cup-full-of-booze-and-mill-around-aimlessly-in-a-loud-dark-room"
    and
    quiet areas for talking, and quiet areas for talking.
    very much agreed. I guess I'm not much of a party person, but one of the best times I had this year at Defcon was mentioning something off-hand to another attendee in an elevator, and that evolving into a 2-hour conversation in the hallway.
    It's not stupid, it's advanced.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

      Originally posted by barkode View Post
      We really wanted a nice, attractive venue with a full bar, dedicated staff, room for technology exhibits, outside smoking areas, lots of seating, quiet areas for talking, and quiet areas for talking. Yes, quiet areas for talking is in there twice. Being unable to hold a normal conversation in a skybox party always bothered me.
      i am convinced that i didn't get to see one half or even one third of the ninja party this year, as you are describing aspects of the affair that were nowhere in sight for me. i do hope that none of my above comments were seen as an indication that i didn't think you guys did a great job... i always knew you'd bring it, like before... but i will admit i was seriously lacking on the details of just how great a job you did.

      something that totally clashes with my usual notion of "non-exclusivity is best" would be a suggestion for next year... making invites required for access to the whole affair somehow. the crowds were unbelievably unmanageable when i was there. we couldn't walk in, out, mingle, get to the bar, sit down, etc etc etc.

      i would have loved the chance of seeing all that you had going on there, but the myriad of hard-to-navigate lines, crowds, and bouncers that appeared to be inside the party were what turned me off at the time. next time i'll try to push on through harder. however, maybe that situation could be improved by stationing one checkpoint (totally outside) where badges are checked... maybe i'm misunderstanding but it seemed like a lot of the crowd inside weren't ninja badge folk, but had just showed up to mingle. maybe i'm wrong there.

      Originally posted by barkode View Post
      Depending on traffic luck, it took between 5 minutes and 10 minutes to get to the Artisan on a shuttle, and we ran multiple shuttles constantly all night.
      heh, i still disagree with this figure, as our shuttle seemed to take 15 minutes or more on the way there. coming back to the Riv was closer to 10 minutes, i'll grant.

      still, the location was terrific in terms of how else it could have been and i do hope you try something like this again in the future (with just a little bit more manageable crowd control and passes for the pillow fight posse, heh)

      i promise to keep and open mind and an open heart and still look forward to coming again if you'll slip me and my dates a couple invites.

      thanks again for everything, you guys.
      "I'll admit I had an OiNK account and frequented it quite often… What made OiNK a great place was that it was like the world's greatest record store… iTunes kind of feels like Sam Goody to me. I don't feel cool when I go there. I'm tired of seeing John Mayer's face pop up. I feel like I'm being hustled when I visit there, and I don't think their product is that great. DRM, low bit rate, etc... OiNK it existed because it filled a void of what people want."
      - Trent Reznor

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

        barkode:

        Absolutely awesome. Thank you. I want to come out and play with you all next year.

        Regards,

        valkyrie
        _________________________________________
        sapere aude

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

          Originally posted by Deviant Ollam View Post
          i am convinced that i didn't get to see one half or even one third of the ninja party this year, as you are describing aspects of the affair that were nowhere in sight for me. i do hope that none of my above comments were seen as an indication that i didn't think you guys did a great job... i always knew you'd bring it, like before... but i will admit i was seriously lacking on the details of just how great a job you did.
          I appreciate it - also I know that all of your criticism is totally constructive, no worries at all. Same goes for my counterarguments of course, just presenting my side. It's a discussion that needed to happen anyway.

          Venue-wise there was a back patio you might have missed and some other inside areas as well, but the technology exhibits (other than the photo booth which was a lot of fun) were largely out-of-sight this year due to practical limitations. We're going to fix that next year.

          Originally posted by Deviant Ollam View Post
          something that totally clashes with my usual notion of "non-exclusivity is best" would be a suggestion for next year... making invites required for access to the whole affair somehow. the crowds were unbelievably unmanageable when i was there. we couldn't walk in, out, mingle, get to the bar, sit down, etc etc etc.
          There was one primary "packed" area most of the night - between bar entry and the bar. The rest of the venue was busy but was easy to move around. If you were just in the bar area, I can see how you would get that impression.

          Some of that was due to the fake invites going around which caused some clogging, some of it was more practical, such as the presence of chairs at the bar. We're probably going to remove some of the chairs next year to open it up a bit. We're definitely considering having the doorcheck be at the valet area as well, which will help with crowding in the bar area.

          As crowded as it was, I felt that it was still really easy to get around, except the area right by the bar. The rest of the venue I felt was plenty easy to navigate.

          Originally posted by Deviant Ollam View Post
          i would have loved the chance of seeing all that you had going on there, but the myriad of hard-to-navigate lines, crowds, and bouncers that appeared to be inside the party were what turned me off at the time. next time i'll try to push on through harder. however, maybe that situation could be improved by stationing one checkpoint (totally outside) where badges are checked... maybe i'm misunderstanding but it seemed like a lot of the crowd inside weren't ninja badge folk, but had just showed up to mingle. maybe i'm wrong there.
          You're right about moving the checkpoint outside of the hotel, we had that discussion the following day. This year there was one chokepoint - between the lobby and the bar. That's the line you saw. It actually only existed about once every ten minutes - right after a rush of people showed up after a shuttle pulled up. After they got in, there would be no line for the next ten minutes. Even still - the line moved pretty quickly. It just LOOKED ominous.

          But this is the core reason we want to move the doorcheck to the front door of the hotel. That said, I actually thought the lobby area was optimally populated, and I hope to maintain that next year. Busy, but easy to move.

          As far as stuff to see - hopefully next year we'll actually be able to get the rest of the technology stuff out and running to add some more things to do.

          Originally posted by Deviant Ollam View Post
          still, the location was terrific in terms of how else it could have been and i do hope you try something like this again in the future (with just a little bit more manageable crowd control and passes for the pillow fight posse, heh)
          Chris and I feel bad about the pillow fight team, their whole thing was supposed to be handled by a third party. Let's make sure next year we sort that out ahead of time. I'm sure I'll find you next year and make sure you're all set. FWIW, in the end, someone from the EFF did grab me and have me walk in the entire pillow fight crew (or so they said). I didn't see you there at the time, though.

          Originally posted by Deviant Ollam View Post
          i promise to keep and open mind and an open heart and still look forward to coming again if you'll slip me and my dates a couple invites.
          Awesome. We appreciate it!

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

            Awesome work all around and an epic tale.

            Please make sure to screw up some badges again next year, impromptu trivia in the HHV for a chance to fix a badge to get into the best party at DEFCON was very cool. I'll try to have some better questions figured out before hand for DC18.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

              I got my badge at the HHV with the premise that I had to repair it to get in to the party.

              During assembly one of the YETDAs was inserted upside down, Bottom row 2nd in. Total bitch to get it out. Torched the board and then the display started melting to it's neighbors. Took some wave soldering with gobs of solder and a screwdriver prying, spent like 30 minutes just to get it out.

              It was even worse trying to get the display back in to the board. Every hole had to be wicked to the plating material and every pin on the display needed wicked and bent as close to factory spec as possible. Had to trim the plastic with a knife where it was melted.

              Then I had to blow the surface mount micro controller with hot air to eliminate the earlier pecker tracks from the display reworking.

              Seems the party was standing room only. The people there were some of the most beautiful nerds I've seen, and everyone was dressed to thrill. Got a rum and coke and didn't stay long, the noise and crowd was setting off my claustrophobia that I didn't know I had.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                I did the same fix for another chap, used my hakko 808 to desolder it and a small screwdriver to pry it out.
                - Null Space Labs

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                  Fucking awesome party, no two ways about it. Great venue (I smoke there on occasion), great music, and good company. Wish I woulda known earlier about manpower being needed, I would've been happy to help insert displays. I hope the "complex idea" happens next year. I know that you and cnelson are only in LA, but if you need any help on the ground in Vegas, don't be afraid to call.

                  My hopefully-constructive criticisms:

                  Door check by valet is a great idea, along with maybe hand-stamps (even for badge-holders) to stop 2 friends from getting everyone they know into the party one at a time.

                  After the first hour, the place definitely got way packed. Another overflow area would be great, but I'm not sure if there's even one available. The lobby stayed mostly manageable (except for right in front of the bar, at times), with lots of places to sit, which was way nice. It was pretty damn warm, which is hard to deal with in Vegas, but not impossible.

                  Big ups for not turning the place LA-like by restricting smoking. Especially since the patio out-back seemed to be one of the most heavily-crowded spots.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                    Wow, after watching that video I have a huge amount of respect for what went into making that badge. Great job everyone!

                    And thank you barkode for being so open about the party and everything. It's great to get "inside" info on how hard everyone works!
                    --- The fuck? Have you ever BEEN to Defcon?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                      best badge mod: LEMON PARTY!
                      45 5F E1 04 22 CA 29 C4 93 3F 95 05 2B 79 2A B0
                      45 5F E1 04 22 CA 29 C4 93 3F 95 05 2B 79 2A B1
                      [ redacted ]

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                        Originally posted by bascule View Post
                        best badge mod: LEMON PARTY!
                        No way! Best badge mod I saw was:

                        CPE17
                        04TKS

                        Awesome! Exactly 10 characters.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                          Nice post barkode. Awesome party, it was a blast. Look forward to seeing you all there next year

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                            Seriously, what an absolutely stellar job you guys did! The VENUE was incredible: it felt like a Sherlock Holmes study with the fountain in the center and the maps everywhere - I've been coming to the Riviera for DEFCON all these years and never even noticed this wonderful place right around the corner!

                            Originally posted by barkode View Post
                            In previous years we did holograms to minimize the fake pass issue- and next year we'll probably return to something like that to minimize the financial impact of bulk fakes. Having one-off fakes from time to time is in good DEFCON-style fun, but the bulk aspect sucked. :(
                            Good show on the advertising technique! Announcing to 10,000 hackers that they aren't allowed in to a party is *BY FAR* the best way to ensure it's filled with interesting people, lol. Honestly, I'd been looking forward to this year's IOActive Freak Show all year and after someone I met on the elevator told me there was a party I wasn't allowed to attend, I'd forgotten all about anything else happening Saturday night! Seriously, next year I would even suggest nixing the +1 paper invite thing entirely just to see all the creative ways people sneak in!

                            Originally posted by barkode View Post
                            So, old plan out the window, and new plan. Badges would be assembled entirely by hand in the US, as the parts came in. The surface mount components would be placed on the badges using solderpaste and a hotplate from Target, instead of a reflow oven. The through-hole components, meaning the YETDA displays and the battery holder, would be inserted entirely by hand, and each badge would have every single pin soldered by hand (about 175-ish pins per badge, times roughly 500 badges, or 87,500 individual joints.)
                            You should have outsourced that work to the badgeholders, lol. It would be a wonderful excuse for otherwise entirely software-based types to saunter over to the HHV to learn how to solder things. Also, people in the HHV most certainly would have helped solder if you'd stood on a chair and announced your situation.

                            Also, if this happens next year - definitely contact me! My badgehacking team brought along a hot air station for soldering surface mount components that would have made things a lot easier. (Although girlie sleepovers that consist of soldering surfacemount components in an EZBake Oven sure sounds pretty tempting...)

                            Originally posted by barkode View Post
                            At that moment, an -actual- crazy person walks up to me in the parking lot, hands me a $20 bill, and says to me, "God told me to give you this, and tell you that everything is going to be alright." Then the dude gets in his truck, and drives away. This actually happened.
                            LMAO. That really needs to go into a book of memorable quotes somewhere!

                            Also, Cool Ninja-Related Story about my ninja badge experience: Link to mah blog
                            It is statistically likely that I'm following you on Twitter.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: The 2009 Ninja Badge / Ninja Party

                              Originally posted by L34h View Post
                              Seriously, what an absolutely stellar job you guys did! The VENUE was incredible: it felt like a Sherlock Holmes study with the fountain in the center and the maps everywhere - I've been coming to the Riviera for DEFCON all these years and never even noticed this wonderful place right around the corner!

                              *snip*

                              Also, Cool Ninja-Related Story about my ninja badge experience: Link to mah blog
                              Thanks for the kind words! I like that place too. Also, awesome blog post. I'm glad you met Amanda, she's awesome. Looks like you had to do some serious work on that badge.

                              We dropped a whole bunch of busted badges in the HHV, and I'm really glad we did. The HHV is one of my favorite developments in recent years at DEFCON. I'm looking forward to figuring out what kind of crazy stuff we can drop on you guys next year. :)

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X