any conclusions?

With all this writing about hackers, one might begin to think that they are like the Carthaginians of the ancient Mediterranean: their history written only by their enemies. But there is a significant body of writing by hackers available, if one wishes to look for it. While academic writing about computer hacking is not common, there are literally hundreds of texts from hackers themselves. In fact, almost the entire construction of "hacking" by hackers takes place in text: the cool ASCII of email, Usenet, and the UNIX command. It is within a textual space that hacking is, for the hackers themselves, constructed.

Ultimately, this is what is important. We see, too often I think, writers making poor guesses about what constitutes hacking. I think of Levy here in particular: certainly, a philosophy of sorts developed around computer hobbyists, a philosophy which was absorbed in part into the "computer community" and into the "hacker community."

Maybe it doesn’t matter whether his "hacker ethic" has any legs; I am starting to think of it as a principle of art: Dada into Surrealism into Abstraction, each for the moment right, dragging concepts along with them all through a confused century.