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DEF CON 21 floor medallions
Last week, the 21st annual DEF CON hacker conference opened its doors to over 15,000 attendees - and when registration ran out of badges, they issued paper badges to the overflow crowd.
In a course reversal that caused controversy in and out of hacker communities, this year Federal agents were disinvited weeks before the conference.
See more photos and read much more about the activities, outrageous parties and more mischief at DEF CON 21 in:
The conference, with benefit parties and contests, raised over $100,000 for the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
Hackers came to DEF CON from all over the world to hack, party, learn and connect in the world's most high-profile hacker conference, and attendees included all genders, age ranges, races, nationalities, orientations and diverse configurations, from classic nerds to families of all kinds. In my ten years of attending tech conferences, it was the highest ratio of women to men in attendance that I'd ever seen.
The actor Will Smith showed up on DEF CON's last day with bodyguards, causing a lukewarm stir - not nearly as much interest as had an actor more closely connected to hacker culture. He told inquiring attendees that he was there to research the way hackers talk and behave because he is readying to play a hacker "with a social engineering aspect" in an upcoming film.
Smith dropped in on a social engineering talk and briefly visited the vendor floor, staying at DEF CON for around 20-30 minutes. The high-profile, loyal Scientology donor purchased two CD's of nerdcore rap from community treasure rap duo, Dual Core, and the Fresh Prince may have learned how a Pwn Plug works. Or not.