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Who is Invited to the Conference?

Prior attendees suggest people to invite who will bring something to the conference: some idea, contribution, energy, or whatever it is that makes the conference succeed. We believe that the attendees are Hs: people who enjoy pushing the envelope, bypassing limits, discovering knowledge, inventing solutions, and adventuring into uncharted areas. We try to find people from all domains / professions, from around the world, who are the tinkerers, who take a hands-on approach to actually creating and doing what everyone else thinks is the impossible. We actively encourage diversity in our attendees, in who they are, where they are from, and what they do. If you're an artist, musician, designer of prestidigitational effects, bio-engineer, etc., then you are appropriate for this conference and this conference is appropriate for you.

What's a H?

An expert in their field who tries to do the impossible... who pushes the envelope of technology. They are not the people who break into computer systems. These are the people who created the Personal Computer industry and who actually built the Internet.

Even 18 years ago there was one meaning for this word... it was a very complimentary, very positive word. Sadly, there's now another definition, with quite the opposite meaning. The definition created by the media means something very negative. Many people still use the term as a compliment while some news reports and governments use the term to mean a criminal.

The original meaning of the word was a very positive one, someone who is excited (intrigued, interested) by the challenge of doing things that other people say are nearly impossible; someone who has great fun finding the way to succeed by inventing an interesting solution; someone who enjoys just trying to find a way to do the impossible even if they don't actually succeed. At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology these people were referred to as Hs and this is the term that has survived.

Computer Hs find it challenging to figure out how operating systems and networks work, and to make them do things not thought possible. The telephone system became the challenge for a few who discovered undocumented features. Even though very few people broke into the phone system, they caught the attention of the news media and the police. Unfortunately, the media began using the term when referring to virtually all such crimes, totally ignoring the original positive meaning of the word and the fact that very few real Hs in the original sense of the word were involved.