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  • WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

    I didn't really see a post on this, and of course this is my personal opinion.

    To sum things up, I don't feel that people sitting around playing GH2 has a place at Defcon.

    I know money was donated the the EFF which is always a good thing, however the idea of this being a formal contest is a bit much. There was even a rumour circulating about making this a black badge event, which luckily was denied by "people". Even for a fund raiser, I still don't really think it has a place at Defcon. Why not raffle off some cool gear/swag for the Eff? it is Vegas after all. Another option would be to use Frets on fire, which is like guitar hero, but open source and played with a computer keyboard, this is at least funny (keyboard guitar hacking contest anybody?)

    Anyways, just my 2 bits.
    ~:CK:~
    I would like to meet a 1 to keep my 0 company.

  • #2
    Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

    while i wouldn't go so far as to say it has no place at DefCon, i was a but surprised to hear someone suggest at one point that maybe it could become an official event. i would submit that while there is certainly an attachment to gaming in our community (look at how popular the Halo tournaments are at ShmooCon) it's not truly close enough to "hacking" to deserve black badge status, etc.
    "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

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    • #3
      Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

      Tho I played, and had fun, I was a bit dissappointed at myself afterwards that I spent so much of my time at defcon sitting around the gh2 table. :-/

      So, even though I was entertained, I don't think I'll play next year. Unless the rules were changed to allow people to build robots to play for you. Now that would be a contest. ;)

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

        Honestly, what the fuck do you care what people do for a contest at DEF CON? If you don't like it don't play. If you think it's stupid, don't stand around and watch. Jesus Fucking Christ, why would anyone care what other people do with their time at DEF CON?

        I thought the GH2 contest was a great idea. The reaction of both those that played and those that watched was exceptional.

        If we took everything that wasn't specifically 'hacking' out of DEF CON a lot of folks favorite events would be gone.

        I think a case can easily be made that Lock Picking isn't hacking. It is, however, something that people that attend DEF CON have an interest in therefore it gets not only it's own contest but an entire skybox so people can play and learn...this is a good thing. Please explain what Coffee Wars has to do with hacking. Why aren't you bitching about that? Brew Wars? Am I missing something here? Many of the contests have nothing to do with hacking but rather have something to do with things DC attendees enjoy. How is this a bad thing?

        I seriously don't understand why anyone would give a flying fuck what contests there are that they have no interest in participating in. Was that table denied to you for something you wanted to do? No. Were ANY events denied space specifically so that GH2 had room? Nope. Is this thread completely retarded? Yep.

        As for a black badge event...my personal opinion is that if a contest is going to get time at the closing ceremony it should get a black badge. If not, have a second ceremony for the unofficial contests and save time at closing. I have zero say in how that works out. Black Badge events are DTs decision but I think the GH2 black badge 'rumor' probably stems from a conversation that folks overheard between Russ and I and at no time was this contest considered (to my knowledge) for a black badge.
        Last edited by Chris; August 12, 2007, 08:54.
        perl -e 'print pack(c5, (41*2), sqrt(7056), (unpack(c,H)-2), oct(115), 10)'

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        • #5
          Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

          When I first attended Defcon, I thought to myself, "who are all of these losers getting drunk when they can learn about something, or compete in a contest?" Such a question showed my ignorance, and inexperience. It took some time, but I realized that some (not all) of the people getting drunk were professionals, and people with knowledge. Some of these people work hard all year, attend conferences, and use Defcon as a time to party or be on vacation.

          This subject again came up when looking at why so many people have attempted to document Defcon on film, and failed.

          It is a recurring theme-- "Defcon is what you make of it."

          If you accept this as a cornerstone to what Defcon is, then you can consider side-effects of this on people that attend Defcon.

          If, "Defcon is what you make of it," then every person has their own perception of what defcon really is. For some people, it is strictly about presentation, and speaker-tracks. (This is what it was for me in the early years.) For people that play CTF, Defcon is almost entirely CTF and nothing else. When the (Wireless) War Driving contest was huge, War Driving was primarily what Defcon was about for several people. Many people tend to mix and match different parts of defcon and pick and choose what they want.

          Understanding the above helps to explain why no documentary has ever been able to capture, "what is Defcon?" -- Everyone has their own view and perception of Defcon and would tend to criticize anything that didn't depict their own view of Defcon. :-)

          Accepting this allows you to accept that Defcon is a party for many people as much as it is a contest for others, or an educational opportunity for others, and everyone has their own ideas about what they consider fun.

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          • #6
            Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

            awright.. here's one snarly beast that I'm gonna branch out into three* (3) III** different opinions on.

            Contests
            We need more contests like Guitar Hero. No, I'm not advocating more gaming, LAN wars, and otherwise a vamped LAN party atmosphere. I'm talking about fun. We need more situations that show how completely retarded we can be, as well as more situations that make us think free-form outside of the rule specifics thrown in the traditional contest sense.

            This is a topic that has been plaguing the wireless contest runners for a few years now and still hasn't been ironed out. What we need to understand is that forced skill, time, and aptitude requirements don't lead to cool/impressive things. LosT has found an equation to pull it off, but making that same thing fit into other arenas of interest just doesn't seem to work. Make it fun and the people with misc pools of those traits will come out of the woodwork and impress everyone.


            You know what I want?

            I want someone to take the Mt Dew Chugging Title away from me next year. Whether it be at Kadys or up on stage in the contest area. 53 seconds is the goal, start your practicing.

            I want someone to take a classic board game and throw a hacker twist on it, or blow it up into a real life contest using (within reason/safety) hotel realestate to its advantage.

            I want someone to take great opportunity to poke fun at our loved goons, and/or involve them in shenanigans that help make their weekend fun.

            I want someone to make an official scoreboard for Russ ... no, not for the contest area, for Russ. ... ...

            I want to see a minibosses tribute band.. seriously.. they aren't the only ones that can rock hard from 8-bit to 8-track.


            Here's a prime example: On irc preceeding Defcon there was mention of spreading water pistols around the ToxicBBQ by some of the brilliant IVU folks. I retorted with "well, just how much money would it take to purchase 300 water pistols?". It dropped at that.. but I could not help to laugh as I walked up to the TBBQ in motion this year.. only to see water pistols EVERYWHERE!


            I kinda spanked on this before Defcon, but we need to lower contest expectations from this huge coordinated tactical effort (CTF, 0TB, LP) into something as simple as showing up with your XBOX 360 (kudos Panadero) and getting hackers to play air guitar. Not to slight those that build these impressive monster contests, but that size factor can't be the marker we judge everything else by. You never know what may turn into the coolest thing ever to hit Defcon. We need to get more attendees showing up ready to do cool things and start cool things, rather than leave them with the understanding that they are there to watch cool things happen. FUN! Don't let politics and logic concerning related topics*** stop us from having the best fucking time ever since the year before.



            *somewhere in this notation is an algorithm to determine how many beers Chris had at Defcon.
            **see also 'BILL GATES III' baahaha+teehee
            ***To Be Continued...
            if it gets me nowhere, I'll go there proud; and I'm gonna go there free.

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            • #7
              Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

              Originally posted by converge View Post
              I want to see a minibosses tribute band.. seriously.. they aren't the only ones that can rock hard from 8-bit to 8-track.
              hehe... now if someone could hack the Guitar Hero code an insert tabs for the Nintendo stuff that the Minibosses play... now that would be pretty fucking amazing.

              thank you for the clarification on the black badge rumor, chris. to clarify my own comments, i certainly wasn't trying to say that events like GHII are a bad thing, just that if the spectrum of what earns people a black badge gets spread too thin, it slightly reduces the "uber" nature of said badge. that's why no matter how popular some of my contests get (exotic meat cooking/eating, beer cooling, etc) i don't think they'd ever really get black-badge worthy, in my opinion. i suppose you could make the case for the BCCC... but i prefer, like panadero, to just run events that are good, silly fun on the side where people can cut loose and have a good time.
              "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


              • #8
                Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                Originally posted by converge View Post
                We need to get more attendees showing up ready to do cool things and start cool things, rather than leave them with the understanding that they are there to watch cool things happen.
                I decided to run a lock field stripping contest this year just for fun, which, despite the boring sound of disassembling and reassembling a lock, actually turned out to be a blast. I think this was primarily because I invited anyone who wanted to play, whether they had ever seen the inside of a lock or not. We ended up with a few broken locks (including the one I was trying to demo for everyone ) but I was planning to give away the first rounds worth anyway. A lot of people did really well and I think learned a lot, in the midst of a really goofy, breaking-crap-and-not-caring atmosphere.

                Anyway, I was just trying to reiterate what you're saying there, that the more we can provide accessible events to everyone, the more involved everyone CAN be.

                And if you don't want anything to do with it? DON'T PLAY.

                As far as black badges are concerned? I don't think anyone should get a black badge from my contest, probably ever. I hope to run it for as many more years as I can afford to give away locks, but I don't think the value of a contest should be based on the value of it's prize.

                Just saying I think converge has a really cool attitude about this. Let's let the market decide what should be at DC. If there's an interest that shares enough of the venn diagram of attendees to hold their attention? Why not let it be?

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                • #9
                  Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                  Awards Ceremony
                  .. is way too fucking long. It has been for years and it only gets worse every year, with contests getting out of hand in time realestate and dominating the hour(s). This is not to detract from the insanity that our contest goon is keeping in balance; this is certainly not to detract from the cool contests that happen.. but when I hit the room I want to see a capstone of the coolest and most interesting things that happened throughout the con, whether I was able to be a part in the first hand or not.

                  But a great movie can play on forever and you won't notice. The awards ceremonies are growingly bland. I have to rag on the CTF folks for this. Ghettohackers up through Kenshoto, you have found ways of making sitting around a table more interesting than Ronald Reagan pogosticking through a crowd of naked midgets. .. but when it comes to awards ceremonies all folks get are a 'this is ninja of the year, [people trod up and down stage], yay this was awesome, [contest runners leave stage]". It's the same thing year after year.. WTF? You guys are killing meh, innovatesomemoreplease.

                  But thats just unfairly picking on the Kenshoto folks and this is something systemic throughout ALL contests involved. Grow some and make all aspects of your contest interesting. Sure, LosT talked about the folks that won, but the greater portion of his presentation was intriguing the audience with his crazy bomb-like neural house of pain. It is great to recognize winners, but parading them up in front of folks in ALL cases is just too drawn out. Give some verbal props to those who one and did well, then consider spending the rest/majority of your time letting folks know about the coolest things that happened, aka the guy that physically pwnd or SEd the CTF team that won, the robot contestant that turned their shooting device into a booze stout after hours, or whatnot.

                  I would also challenge the folks organizing the ceremony to steal away from just awarding contest winners and focus it back on a wrapup of crazy stuff at Defcon. Just like contests aren't guaranteed a black badge, don't guarantee contest runners a spot in the ceremony unless they can dig up something noteworthy and fun. Closing Ceremonies, not Award Ceremonies.


                  More words to piss off my friends to follow..
                  if it gets me nowhere, I'll go there proud; and I'm gonna go there free.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                    Originally posted by converge View Post
                    I would also challenge the folks organizing the ceremony to steal away from just awarding contest winners and focus it back on a wrapup of crazy stuff at Defcon. Just like contests aren't guaranteed a black badge, don't guarantee contest runners a spot in the ceremony unless they can dig up something noteworthy and fun. Closing Ceremonies, not Award Ceremonies.
                    I agree with this, but it is a delicate balance. Part of the fun of competing in a contest is the recognition you get from winning. An example is the debates on here about the black badge (should i get to wear it all con and show my awesomeness/should it be turned in/my contest isn't black badge worthy/my contest is black badge worthy but YOUR contest isn't). Obviously the contests and what winning them means is important to people.

                    I think it might be cooler to have two different events. One, an awards ceremony where ALL contest winners are recognized and contest organizers have time to talk about their events. The other, a true closing ceremony where a few of the cool stories from the contests are relayed by the organizers (as chosen by Russ/DT/Zac) but the bulk is just ending the show. Here is what was cool this year, here is what wasn't, etc.

                    I think folks would drift in and out of the contest awards ceremony, and it could be as long as necessary, whereas the closing ceremony would be set at an hour and would probably have folks there the entire time.
                    perl -e 'print pack(c5, (41*2), sqrt(7056), (unpack(c,H)-2), oct(115), 10)'

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                      Originally posted by converge View Post
                      It is great to recognize winners, but parading them up in front of folks in ALL cases is just too drawn out.
                      this may sound like me patting myself on the back, and while i generally don't like to do that... in this case i'll make a small exception.

                      i really wish there was a way for more of the contest and events folks to incorporate some sorts of pictures or other visuals in their closing ceremony presentation. hell, each year i've actually been satisfied with my little 15 seconds of fun simply because i talk really fast, give some brief details and highlights, show a lot of funny photos of what people did, then get the hell away from the microphone and spend the rest of the time swagging out free shit to the crowd and finding my winners later, offstage, where i can give them their prizes.

                      i'd be willing to go through the trouble of putting together everyone's photos and whatnot if they wanted to coordinate it with me... just to give the crowd something to look at while the closing is going on.
                      "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


                      • #12
                        Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                        Black Badges

                        okay.. I just made a decent rant on this, but my browser crashed and I've gotta hit the road.

                        The gist of it was that Black badges have become way too common and easy to attain. It is currently rated on contests that attract people and the contestants that win them. I'm not saying it needs to be based on technical level or whatnot, but that the badges need to go to those that make the stories we talk about all year and the years to come. LosT and his crazy contest, his general hacker attitude and involvement bringing everyone into the fold; Apollo walking in a script kiddie and taking on the pros in CTF. These are the people that need to be awarded and recognize with something as cool as the badge.

                        There should be one, or two, or maybe 5 max.. that getting made yearly, but not necessarily awarded unless deserving. Sure, save one or two for novelty of a new amazing awesome contest/event/thing that gets all the attendees riled up, but not necessarily year after year. Make the badge something you've gotta be involved for, more so than just participating in a stock contest and coming out on top. Then get _those_ folks up on stage at Closing Ceremonies to tell of their stories.

                        Sorry, I had much more depth and thought behind that general blurb, but mfreeck is about to kick my ass.
                        if it gets me nowhere, I'll go there proud; and I'm gonna go there free.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                          Originally posted by converge View Post
                          Sorry, I had much more depth and thought behind that general blurb, but mfreeck is about to kick my ass.
                          We all know who is in charge.
                          "\x74\x68\x65\x70\x72\x65\x7a\x39\x38";

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                            Some good input, and really I did see people having fun, and that is a big part of defcon. The "Hack or Halo" event put on by Shmoo rocks, because it is a hybrid of the two and eventually a showdown at the end. I think why I posted this was because I was hanging out by Lost's booth, and was checking out all the cool gadgets and puzzles for the mystery box competition while 100+ people are crowding around someone playing gh2, it just didn't feel right.

                            Roamer, I agree with you, and I know I shouldn't care about it. I was thinking more in the context of actf vs gh2. They are different types of fun to different people, so you got me there. I also would agree that coffee wars and beer wars have nothing to do with hacking, so you got me again....you win. :)

                            Deviant, Frets on Fire has easy customizable songs, so I will see what I can do about making some up for the Minibosses. More importantly you can use the usb guitar hero guitar with Frets, so it is a cool alternative to an expensive proprietary game, but with just as much fun.
                            ~:CK:~
                            I would like to meet a 1 to keep my 0 company.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: WTF is up with guitar hero at Defcon

                              Originally posted by ck3k View Post
                              ... I was hanging out by Lost's booth, and was checking out all the cool gadgets and puzzles for the mystery box competition while 100+ people are crowding around someone playing gh2, it just didn't feel right.
                              I think this alone proves the value of the contest. If 100+ people are standing around watching don't you think some folks are getting enjoyment out of it?

                              Originally posted by ck3k View Post
                              Roamer, I agree with you, and I know I shouldn't care about it. I was thinking more in the context of actf vs gh2. They are different types of fun to different people, so you got me there. I also would agree that coffee wars and beer wars have nothing to do with hacking, so you got me again....you win. :)
                              It should be noted that I am always right. Never forget that
                              perl -e 'print pack(c5, (41*2), sqrt(7056), (unpack(c,H)-2), oct(115), 10)'

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