Feb 5 2014
Our first class in hacking, and we were thrilled, thoughts of being able to hack into sites running through our minds. The class started off with discussions on how to spread the reach of SPACE. Next, we were shown a hard disk and asked what we knew about it. That session ended quickly as we, obviously, knew little. Then, we were taught the principle of working of the hard disk, the different parts, and the importance of each part. We all enjoyed it, but what was going through all our minds was ,”What does this have to do with hacking ?”.
After that, we were given a set of tools and told to open up the hard disk, to take it apart. That got us all very excited and we abandoned our seats to crowd around the hard disk, arguing with each other over who got to work on which part. Soon we had the hard disk completely taken apart, each part separated. From the looks on our teachers’ faces, we could tell that they had not expected us to do it to such an extent.
So our next task was to put it back together to the required form, and honestly, that was a lot harder than taking it apart. But we somehow managed to do it, and funnily enough, there were some extra parts. Luckily, we were laughingly told that sometimes such things happen and that it was okay.
After all that, we were told, to our delight, that we were going to learn to make a speaker from a hard disk. We were shown the simple connections that were required and were allowed to connect, and solder it ourselves. Once we completed it, we connected it to a laptop and found that it indeed function as a speaker, albeit at a very low volume.
When we voiced our concern over the low volume, we were shown additional connections to make it a bit louder. We completed those connections as well but the volume was still low. And that was when we were told that the sound needed to be amplified, and that even something as simple as a paper cone could be used for that purpose.
Soon the class was over, and we all got ready to leave, happy with what we had learned. That was when we were told that what we had learned was hacking. Upon seeing the confusion on our faces, it was explained to us that what we thought was hacking was actually ‘Cracking’, and that hacking was finding new innovative uses for things, like what we had learned. And surprisingly, we were not disappointed that this was what we were going to learn.