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0x200. PROGRAMMING

Chapter 0x200. PROGRAMMING

Hacker is a term for both those who write code and those who exploit it. Even though these two groups of hackers have different end goals, both groups use similar problem-solving techniques. Since an understanding of programming helps those who exploit, and an understanding of exploitation helps those who program, many hackers do both. There are interesting hacks found in both the techniques used to write elegant code and the techniques used to exploit programs. Hacking is really just the act of finding a clever and counterintuitive solution to a problem.

The hacks found in program exploits usually use the rules of the computer to bypass security in ways never intended. Programming hacks are similar in that they also use the rules of the computer in new and inventive ways, but the final goal is efficiency or smaller source code, not necessarily a security compromise. There are actually an infinite number of programs that can be written to accomplish any given task, but most of these solutions are unnecessarily large, complex, and sloppy. The few solutions that remain are small, efficient, and neat. Programs that have these qualities are said to have elegance, and the clever and inventive solutions that tend to lead to this efficiency are called hacks. Hackers on both sides of programming appreciate both the beauty of elegant code and the ingenuity of clever hacks.


  

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