This was my first time to Defcon and it was a great time. There are over 7000 people there and there are so many things to do you have to pretty much choose a path and go for it. You could spend all your time in the presentations or participate in the contests and compete for the glory and maybe even the esteemed black badge. There were a few that struck me. The hack the badge contest is for people to hack Joe Grand’s badge. The team that won managed to turn their badge into a frequency analyzer and pump music through it! They sent off to a rapper and had Joe Grand’s poem about the badge made into a rap that rocked. Video by Dan Kaminsky

For the robot contest, Team Octopi won for the second year in a row with their robot. In this contest you make a robot that can shoot 22 targets within two minutes. It’s a head to head double elimination tournament. My team proudly won third place! The video above is a little snapshot of the event!

After Defcon, 38 other hackers and I took a 24 hour journey by plane and bus to go to CCC camp, a huge, once-every-four-years, hacker conference North of Berlin. I’ll update you on that soon!