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It's that time again! CoffeeWars!

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  • It's that time again! CoffeeWars!

    Eight. A Fibonacci number. The first prime, cubed.
    The number of bits in a byte. The number of days in
    one of the Beatles' weeks. The number of fluid ounces
    in a cup. <-- (subtle foreshadowing)

    These are all interesting and important facts about
    the number eight, but in a moment they will seem puny
    and insignificant compared to what is about to be
    revealed. Brace yourself. Ensure that you are wearing
    safety goggles to protect your eyes, gloves to protect
    your hands, and other appropriate safety items for
    protection. Check to be sure that you are wearing two
    pairs of socks, because the first pair is about to get
    knocked right off.

    Eight is also the number of this year's CoffeeWars.

    That is correct, DefCon attendees. For the past se7en
    years (ha!), on Friday morning when the con begins, and
    everyone is trying to get through the registration lines
    so they can buy the black t-shirts they've been dreaming
    about all year, we've been hard at work.

    Each year, intrepid contestants bring their beans from
    the far corners of the earth. We take those beans. We
    treat them with respect. We apply a standard grinding
    and brewing technique honed and perfected through a
    lifetime of experience and-- as has been mentioned--
    the previous seven coffee battles.

    A select team of experienced, refined, and opinionated
    judges will sample each brew and arrive (by blind voting)
    at the answer to the universally acknowledged most
    important question of the year:

    Which hacker has the best coffee of them all?

    In the novel FOR EVERY SIN, Aharon Appelfeld tells the
    story of camp refugees coping with the immediate aftermath
    of release at the end of World War II. The following
    conversation takes place between the main character and
    a woman he meets along his way:

    "...Drink, dearie, this coffee revives the soul"
    "Thank you. I have nothing to give you."
    "No need. I'm glad to be serving it. If there
    is some meaning to life, it's coffee."
    [Appelfeld, Aharon. FOR EVERY SIN. New York:
    Vintage, 1989. p. 58]

    There it is, my friends. There it absolutely is. And so
    we issue our annual invitation: furnish your own lives
    with additional meaning by joining in our contest. The
    rules are few, simple, and obvious.

    1: ONLY WHOLE BEANS. No pre-ground stuff. No crystals.
    Beans are the only acceptable entry. We recommend
    submitting about 1/2 lb, so there is enough in case
    of a mishap.

    2: BEANS MUST BE UNFLAVORED. We are into coffee-
    flavored coffee, not hazelnut-blueberry-acetone-
    whatever.

    3: WE ONLY DO COFFEEWARS. We don't know who is in
    charge of other aspects of the con, we cannot
    answer questions about other events, etc.

    4: NO DECAF. By all that is sacred. Please.

    5: YOUR ENTRY WILL BECOME OURS, unless you make a plan
    with us at the time you submit it to recover the
    leftovers at the end of the contest. Sorry-- it
    is just too much to keep track of otherwise.

    6. ONLY ONE ENTRY PER CONTESTANT. So lead with your
    best.

    So feel the pride. Bring your favorite beans, and see
    how they measure up against the rest of the hacker coffee
    field. This is one of the craziest contest ideas ever,
    and you'll feel happy and fulfilled for having played a
    part in this, the eighth instantiation. Plus, you just
    might win. Somebody will, after all.

    The contest will begin when the con begins, and it will
    end when we can't take it any more, or when we run out
    of coffee, whichever comes first. There is probably some
    upper limit to the amount of coffee that the judges can
    consume, so serious entrants may wish to ensure their
    beans a slot by pre-registering. Just send e-mail to
    foofus at foofus dot net, and we'll set aside an entry
    form for you.

    Good luck, and see you at the con.

    --Foofus (and Shrdlu).

    Please note. All entries should be emailed to Foofus, or submitted at Defcon.
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