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  • #16
    Re: HHV 2010

    Joe, I keep telling Russ that as well :)

    LosT

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    • #17
      Re: HHV 2010

      Originally posted by LosT View Post
      Joe, I keep telling Russ that as well :)

      LosT
      Ha! As long as you're still running the Mystery Box contest I almost never expect to see you anywhere but down in the contest area. As popular as that contest is, when you do take a break from it, it will be great to see you more around the con and especially up in the HHV. I still say you should convince some of your embedded students from UAT to give a talk or demo as well.

      It was great watching the CVORG gang talk at the last two ShmooCon's (the crayon diagrams during the 2009 talk were priceless). Given the nature of UAT's Embedded system program I'm sure the students could pull off a great talk without having to worry about a huge crowd (> several hundred ppl). What do you think LosT?

      SD

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      • #18
        Re: HHV 2010

        This might come off as heresy but what I've noticed the past 2 years is that >90% of what happens in the HHV seems to be all about the badge. It's great that it inspires so many people to focus on the hardware side for a change but perhaps we can focus on more non-badge related activities this year. TieShort's black box challenge was a great idea last year and the HHV kits are awesome. I'm sure I've forgotten some of the other stuff that happened as well but you can see what I mean hopefully.

        What about some sort of build off contest? If we give an objective that says "build a device that can do X" and then let the teams roll on their own I think we'd see some cool entries. Bonus points given for anyone that can do it with their badges but this way the badge isn't the sole focus. Kind of like a 2 day version of "Prototype This" but smaller. Prizes could be offered or for the first year maybe it's just bragging rights.

        I guess this is sort of the same thing as the badge hacking contest so perhaps it's too much overlap but it sounds like fun and the team approach might be less intimidating for new folks.

        I agree with afterburn's points on more pre-planning. The sooner the better.

        SD

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        • #19
          Re: HHV 2010

          Originally posted by sugardaddy View Post
          This might come off as heresy but what I've noticed the past 2 years is that >90% of what happens in the HHV seems to be all about the badge. It's great that it inspires so many people to focus on the hardware side for a change but perhaps we can focus on more non-badge related activities this year. TieShort's black box challenge was a great idea last year and the HHV kits are awesome.
          I agree that the initial interest in the village is about the badge, which is totally cool. I still am amazed that out of the 11 people who beat the black box, that not ONE opened it up. I mean 4 screws on the bottom. At a hacker conference! Also there were only a handful that completed the HHV kit and got the blinky LED code working.

          So my questions are: Is it just a passing interest in hardware? Is it just a steep learning curve? Is it just plain fear of learning you don't know yet another thing?

          There is a lot going on a Con, and there is a lot to dig into as far as hardware, especially if you have never done anything with it before. I hope that the introduction to hardware skills (soldering, chips, circuits, etc) sparks further interest, but I am not sure how else to really get people involved in the time they have (like me trying to learn lockpicking only at the Con..... I have visited twice, and still don't have my own picks).

          TieShort
          -------------------------------------
          Vaka vanha Väinämöinen
          käski nuoren, käski vanhan

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          • #20
            Re: HHV 2010

            Well, I honestly AM going to try and be in the village more this year. So I Russ I believe.

            Guess we should, you know, be in the village we started *smirk*

            Honestly I'm appreciative of all the work others have done to help out with the HHV.

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            • #21
              Re: HHV 2010

              Well for me its been a "how many people can I help solder" kind of exp. Last year I am sure I was near lead poising level form all of the solder smoke I inhailed doing those little SMT keychains that Lost got. Those were perfect as people just loved them . Also I think I helped 5 or 6 different people build the HHV kit. Before I knew it the con was over. This year I need to pace myself better and at least get out of the HHV for an hour every day to wonder around. But then again I love what the HHV is doing so who knows I might not. My biggest beef has been people coming in wanting their Ninja badges fixed "right fucking now"... my response was good luck sucker. or the "I want someone to hack my badge" .... those people wander the room and leave usually in a few minutes. Then there are those that come in and work all weekend or stop by to do a repair on something... those people make it all worth it. My best exp last year was a father and son who came in and did the keychain... his son was a natural at soldering. Next thing I knew they bought the kit and he (9 years old) did the soldering and I pumped th blinking light code in it and when it worked he was hooked. Thats what the HHV is all about right there.

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              • #22
                Re: HHV 2010

                Originally posted by bombnav View Post
                ...My biggest beef has been people coming in wanting their Ninja badges fixed "right fucking now"... my response was good luck sucker.
                On a related note, we're gonna be supplying a little help to the HHV on that front this year. cstone and woz have indicated they're planning on spending some more time at the HHV and can answer lots of questions and probably provide guidance on repair. We're also going to be taking some other proactive steps to help those who want to hack, repair, or generally mess with their Ninja Badges.

                Comment


                • #23
                  Re: HHV 2010

                  Originally posted by barkode View Post
                  On a related note, we're gonna be supplying a little help to the HHV on that front this year. cstone and woz have indicated they're planning on spending some more time at the HHV and can answer lots of questions and probably provide guidance on repair. We're also going to be taking some other proactive steps to help those who want to hack, repair, or generally mess with their Ninja Badges.
                  I know this is possibly beating a dead drum that bombnav has hit several times but I'll add my beats in. This is not a critique but a suggestion for improvement. It would be nice for us who work in the HHV to not have to initially reverse engineer the devices in order to help people out. While some will say this is the whole point of the HHV (and I agree) I think it will help the volunteers to help others more easily.

                  With the DC16/DC17 badges I was able to look over the schematic the night before and so I had some idea what we were dealing with when I walked in on Friday. Granted, having had a month with the SDK and a night alone with the badge and already reprogrammed it also helped but that's another story.

                  With the Ninja Badge it personally took me some time to figure out what the circuit was doing before I could suggest where users should look to fix their problem (only to later find out they had been told exactly what to do *grumble*). Like Bombnav said, the users would just run up and go "how do i fix this?" and then sit there stomping their foot like this was a service we were suppose to provide. The ones that did this were turned away but still it took time to help those who were honestly trying to give this a stab. Without having time to look at one previously it was a rough starting point but "fun" (read for the first 10 minutes of them breathing over your shoulder while you're probing around their badge with a multimeter) none the less.

                  With the village kits I remember trying to figure the last one out right before the CON started with Bombnav so that when people came up I actually could be of some use to them. I still have my makeshift schematic of what exactly the board is and as to what value C1 actually may have been. I still don't know if an official schematic is released and if so maybe my kit just didn't come with one. If this is not the case: It's great to say that this is suppose to be hacking and people should figure it out but, beginners found it quite intimidating not knowing which cap/resistor corresponded to which value on the board.

                  Maybe there is no solution to this and yet again i'm needlessly causing trouble but I think it would be nice if maybe the schematics were made available to at least the volunteers for quick reference like the DC badge ones are. It's a thought and suggestion to help make it better for both sides and I think the suggestion could be taken with a grain of salt.
                  afterburn

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                  • #24
                    Re: HHV 2010

                    Originally posted by afterburn188 View Post
                    I know this is possibly beating a dead drum that bombnav has hit several times but I'll add my beats in. This is not a critique but a suggestion for improvement. It would be nice for us who work in the HHV to not have to initially reverse engineer the devices in order to help people out. While some will say this is the whole point of the HHV (and I agree) I think it will help the volunteers to help others more easily.

                    ...

                    With the Ninja Badge it personally took me some time to figure out what the circuit was doing before I could suggest where users should look to fix their problem (only to later find out they had been told exactly what to do *grumble*). Like Bombnav said, the users would just run up and go "how do i fix this?" and then sit there stomping their foot like this was a service we were suppose to provide. The ones that did this were turned away but still it took time to help those who were honestly trying to give this a stab. Without having time to look at one previously it was a rough starting point but "fun" (read for the first 10 minutes of them breathing over your shoulder while you're probing around their badge with a multimeter) none the less.
                    Speaking only so far as the Ninja Badge, there's a couple things we can do here. I believe the current plan is to distribute the schematic with the badge, as opposed to putting it online after DEFCON. (FWIW, last year's badge schematics and BOM and so on are all on our website: http://www.ninjas.org/badges/ )

                    Also, as per last year we're going to be extending useful pins to easily accessible areas, so that people can access them without much trouble.

                    That said, even with a schematic available, this year's Ninja Badge is really complex; it's not something with a little MCU and a few LEDs and so on where most of the problems from from a bad thru-hole solder joint. It's got a lot of components, and generally speaking it's a lot of circuitry for a badge. We're really hoping for a minimal amount of hardware issues. HHV volunteers should have no problem figuring things out, but newbies are gonna have a tough time with it on short notice.

                    So the schematic will help, but it's going to be a lot to swallow for people new to hardware. It's not really intended to be self-diagnosed unless you have at least a little background in hardware. Fortunately, we'll have w0z and cstone on-site and I'm sure they'll be in and out of the HHV with some regularity throughout the con.

                    We certainly don't expect anyone in the HHV to operate as the Ninja Badge Pit Crew; that's nobody's problem but ours. But it's very cool that the HHV has become a resource for people to go to, and obviously everyone including us appreciates it.

                    We're going to be distributing Ninja badges starting on Thursday this year, so that should give you guys a head start at playing with them before HHV opens on Friday. For people volunteering in HHV, if you want to sit down with us on Thursday and go over the thing, I'm sure we can make that happen.

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                    • #25
                      Re: HHV 2010

                      Originally posted by barkode View Post
                      We're going to be distributing Ninja badges starting on Thursday this year, so that should give you guys a head start at playing with them before HHV opens on Friday. For people volunteering in HHV, if you want to sit down with us on Thursday and go over the thing, I'm sure we can make that happen.
                      I don't know what everyone else's story is but I'll be around on Thursday and wouldn't mind meeting up for a little just to go over things. Maybe if we get enough interest once the volunteers are organized we can see if any others are interested. Not trying to be the Ninja Pit Crew but more trying to be able to better help people, that's all. Sounds like an awesome badge, look forward to seeing it.
                      afterburn

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                      • #26
                        Re: HHV 2010

                        Originally posted by afterburn188 View Post
                        I don't know what everyone else's story is but I'll be around on Thursday and wouldn't mind meeting up for a little just to go over things. Maybe if we get enough interest once the volunteers are organized we can see if any others are interested. Not trying to be the Ninja Pit Crew but more trying to be able to better help people, that's all. Sounds like an awesome badge, look forward to seeing it.
                        Oh, I wasn't criticizing with the "Ninja Pit Crew" comment, I was being cheeky and saying thanks for the assist. :) It was great that people could go to the HHV last year and get some assistance with their various hardware ailments.

                        We don't have "expectations" of anyone helping out, so we're thankful for those HHV volunteers who help out on their own time. It's awesome that you guys were able to help and will be able to help again this year, and we'll go further in sharing info with HHV and providing resources to any HHV volunteers interested in the Ninja Badge.

                        I'll try to coordinate with Smitty I guess about getting HHV volunteers together on Thursday to chat and go over the Ninja Badge. Is there a point of contact in HHV that has the contact info for all HHV volunteers so that info can be disseminated to everyone on the ground at con? Smitty is that you?

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                        • #27
                          Re: HHV 2010

                          Originally posted by barkode View Post

                          I'll try to coordinate with Smitty I guess about getting HHV volunteers together on Thursday to chat and go over the Ninja Badge. Is there a point of contact in HHV that has the contact info for all HHV volunteers so that info can be disseminated to everyone on the ground at con? Smitty is that you?

                          In the past it's been Russ, Lost and A. No communication that I am aware of so far this year on volunteers.

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                          • #28
                            Re: HHV 2010

                            Originally posted by barkode View Post
                            Oh, I wasn't criticizing with the "Ninja Pit Crew" comment, I was being cheeky and saying thanks for the assist. :) It was great that people could go to the HHV last year and get some assistance with their various hardware ailments.

                            We don't have "expectations" of anyone helping out, so we're thankful for those HHV volunteers who help out on their own time. It's awesome that you guys were able to help and will be able to help again this year, and we'll go further in sharing info with HHV and providing resources to any HHV volunteers interested in the Ninja Badge.

                            I suggest the Ninja's need to step up and do some time in the HHV. Share your knowledge.... Its a lot of fun helping code monkeys join with the hardware.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Re: HHV 2010

                              Originally posted by barkode View Post
                              On a related note, we're gonna be supplying a little help to the HHV on that front this year. cstone and woz have indicated they're planning on spending some more time at the HHV and can answer lots of questions and probably provide guidance on repair. We're also going to be taking some other proactive steps to help those who want to hack, repair, or generally mess with their Ninja Badges.
                              Originally posted by bombnav View Post
                              I suggest the Ninja's need to step up and do some time in the HHV. Share your knowledge.... Its a lot of fun helping code monkeys join with the hardware.
                              The word "the" before Ninjas suggests a reference to the Ninja Network Group. If you are referring to the people of Ninja Networks with the badge and party, two people that were mentioned on ninja badges in the past (on the board, engraved in metal, etc) are set in bold in Barkode's post.

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Re: HHV 2010

                                I'll be finishing up BlackHat on Thursday (work is sending me! Wa-hoo!), but could do a Thursday night HHV get-together. That sounds like a good idea to me.

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