Blog: Opinions

DefCon21 Ruminations

consultant-placeholder11 Lee Parkes 04 Aug 2013

dc21It’s the last day of the Con, Sunday, mixed emotions about things ending but looking
forward to going back home (despite the long flight…). I’m sitting on a chair sometime after 9am. Starbucks Cherry Danish and Strawberry smoothie for breakfast (cue Hyperglycaemic eventlater in the day…). It’s isn’t my first DC, that was DC14 back in 2006 (the first time at the Riviera, DC is now held at the Rio). This is in fact my fourth. So why write about it now?

Well, partly because I’ve only just gotten round to it and partly because there’s nothing to do until 10am…

What can I say about DC? Go. Just go there and experience it for yourself. If you work in
security or have an interest in hacking stuff (software, hardware, people – you get the idea) then you should go. It’s an experience. Of course, the experience is what you make it but DC gives you the tools to get out of it what you want. It’s a learning experience and a fantastic one at that. So much to see and do from the presentations themselves to the many and varied parties. And, of course, it’s held in Las Vegas. If you haven’t heard of Vegas you either haven’t been born yet (how’re you reading this?!) or you live in the desert (probably just outside of Vegas…). Vegas is worthy of several volumes in and of it self so I won’t go into detail here (hey, this is about DC!). DC is the largest “hacker con” going, starting from humble roots 21 years ago. This is the year that DC came of age and was finally able to sample the delights of Vegas.

But, what is DC all about? In a nutshell: learning. No matter what your interest there is
always something to learn here. Whether it be from the presentations or from random interactions with fellow attendees. Or the villages (lockpicking, wireless, hardware etc).

There’s so much to see and do. Three days and four or five tracks per day. That’s a lot of
stuff. Some of the talks are cutting edge, some give a new slant on an old tool. All are
designed to teach. Some presenters are first timers (you can smell the fear…). Others are
veterans. Either way, they’ve done some cool stuff and want to share it with the world.

No matter whether you are on the offensive or defensive side, or merely interested in taking things to a new level, DC is somewhere that should be visited at least once. But,if you can, keep coming back!

Remember: What is learnt in Vegas should be spread around the world!