May Contain Hackers 2022 notes


I did not got a chance to participate in MCH2022 but they have published records of presentations which are available here. Below are some notes of presentations I’ve watched.

Electronic Locks: Bumping and Other Mischief

Personal score: 4/5

Gem. Live demo unlocking multiple electronic locks. Basically all electronic locks sucks because of solenoid (magnets in locks are bad idea), mechanical issues (springs, freely moving parts are bad idea too). Basically all these locks were unlocked with virbations, magnets or torque.

Everything is an input device (fun with barcodes)

Personal score: 3/5

  • Read barcodes, try find patterns, decode what data is there.
  • Barcode scanner is recognized as USB keyboard (!!!).
  • Scanning barcode reads the code and press “Enter” after scanning.
  • Scanners are configured by reading barcodes from manual.
  • 2D scanners supports 1D barcodes.

Signal: you were the chosen one!

Personal score: 3/5

Ideas how Signal could be better chat app.

  • Signal is the best chat app for now.
  • Protocol can be federated (and should be) but it is not by design.
  • Signal does not want other client apps would be using their servers.
  • Phone number required to register is a bad thing.
  • Signal is a “product” so it is moving towards social network. Let’s hope it won’t go there.
  • Other similar rants.

Non-Euclidean Doom: what happens to a game when pi is not 3.14159…

Personal score: 4/5

Just a fun talk and findings. Not much of real value.

  • Doom created on 1993. Open sourced on 1997-1999. One of availabe forks:
  • The original Doom had an incorrect pi value defined in cosntant added by author John Carmack. While it is just a 10th number - there were no issues and this mistake was not detected.
  • Pi constant is used in various trigonometric calculations in video games.
  • Speaker tries to fix and abuse the constant to other numbers and check what the end result is.