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need ideas for workshop on hacking/free software

On Wednesday 19 March 2003 08:25 am, Mike Gorse wrote:
> Hi all,
> A group of students at WPI (my alma mater) is putting together a "tools
> and alternatives" conference, and I will be giving a workshop on hacking
> (in the positive sense, of course) and free software as an alternative to
> proprietary software.  I was wondering if any of you had any suggestions
> on what to do with the group (particularly ways to make the workshop
> hands-on).  The audience will not necessarily be particularly technical.
> And if anyone would like to co-facilitate, then let me know (I will
> probably contact the Worcester Linux Users' Group as well, though).

I didn't think about this very much, but what if you gave them a binary, and 
said "OK, now tell me what it does".  They can use lsof, strings, ps, ldd, 
tcpdump, find, file, etc to figure it out.  You can explain how all of these 
tools can give you clues to a program's (mal)function.

If you really want to make it fun, say "This program is trying to send you a 
message.  The first one to tell me what the message is, wins.".  The message 
doesn't go to stdout of course, but something like syslog, or a named pipe, 
or it writes to a socket port, or some random file somewhere.

DDDD   David Kramer                 
DK KD  "That venture capitalists are willing to take any level of
DKK D  risk, even a modest one, after all that has happened in the
DK KD  ecommerce sector, is inspiring.  They might almost be
DDDD   capable of becoming Red Sox fans"               -Keith Regan

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