Hacker Ethics

The idea of a "hacker ethic" is perhaps best formulated in Steven Levy's 1984 book, Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution. Levy came up with six tenets:

  • Access to computers - and anything which might teach you something about the way the world works - should be unlimited and total. Always yield to the Hands-On imperative!

  • All information should be free.

  • Mistrust authority - promote decentralization.

  • Hackers should be judged by their hacking, not bogus criteria such as degrees, age, race, or position.

  • You can create art and beauty on a computer.

  • Computers can change your life for the better.