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1 definition found
 for hacker
From The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003) :

  hacker
   n.
  
          [originally, someone who makes furniture with an axe]
  
          1. A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems
          and how to stretch their capabilities, as opposed to most users, who
          prefer to learn only the minimum necessary. RFC1392, the Internet
          Users' Glossary, usefully amplifies this as: A person who delights
          in having an intimate understanding of the internal workings of a
          system, computers and computer networks in particular.
  
          2. One who programs enthusiastically (even obsessively) or who
          enjoys programming rather than just theorizing about programming.
  
          3. A person capable of appreciating hack value.
  
          4. A person who is good at programming quickly.
  
          5. An expert at a particular program, or one who frequently does
          work using it or on it; as in `a Unix hacker'. (Definitions 1
          through 5 are correlated, and people who fit them congregate.)
  
          6. An expert or enthusiast of any kind. One might be an astronomy
          hacker, for example.
  
          7. One who enjoys the intellectual challenge of creatively
          overcoming or circumventing limitations.
  
          8. [deprecated] A malicious meddler who tries to discover sensitive
          information by poking around. Hence password hacker, network hacker.
          The correct term for this sense is cracker.
  
          The term `hacker' also tends to connote membership in the global
          community defined by the net (see the network. For discussion of
          some of the basics of this culture, see the How To Become A Hacker
          FAQ. It also implies that the person described is seen to subscribe
          to some version of the hacker ethic (see hacker ethic).
  
          It is better to be described as a hacker by others than to describe
          oneself that way. Hackers consider themselves something of an elite
          (a meritocracy based on ability), though one to which new members
          are gladly welcome. There is thus a certain ego satisfaction to be
          had in identifying yourself as a hacker (but if you claim to be one
          and are not, you'll quickly be labeled bogus). See also geek,
          wannabee.
  
          This term seems to have been first adopted as a badge in the 1960s
          by the hacker culture surrounding TMRC and the MIT AI Lab. We have a
          report that it was used in a sense close to this entry's by teenage
          radio hams and electronics tinkerers in the mid-1950s.
  

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