Title:     hackerethic.org    



This is the site of the book The Hacker Ethic by Pekka Himanen with Linus Torvalds and Manuel Castells. The Hacker Ethic has been, or is being, published in more than ten languages, including English, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, German, French, Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Here, the word hacker doesn't refer to computer criminals but what the word originally meant: a person who wants to do something that one is passionate about, something in which one can realize oneself creatively, and something in which one can build things for the good of all. The hacker ethic is a new work ethic questioning the old Protestant ethic. To read more about it, click the Book or Writings. See also the reviews.

Some coming talks by Himanen at the end of 2001:

Nov 10 Creativo Web and TV Festival, Milan, Italy
Nov 13 Talk to the German Parliament, Berlin, Germany
Nov 14 Talk to the Finnish Parliament and the Supreme Court; talk to the Helsinki University of Technology, Helsinki, Finland
Nov 21 The Information Society Conference in Lempäälä; University of Tampere; University of Jyväskylä
Dec 5 Talk to Nokia

About the authors

Dr. Pekka Himanen, b. 1973, did his PhD in philosophy at the age of 20 at the University of Helsinki (computer science as the minor subject). Since then, he has worked as a researcher in Europe (Finland and England) and the United States (Stanford University and the University of California at Berkeley) , as well as done field study in Asia (India, China and Japan). Himanen's next book is coauthored with Manuel Castells, in continuation to their cooperation in The Hacker Ethic, and is on the social challenges of the information age (coming out in early 2002).

Among the many adviser positions that Himanen has held, he has been an adviser to the Finnish President, government and the parliament on the information society as well as the Finnish Ministry of education and various universities on the virtual university. He has also continuous dialog with the world's leading information technology companies on the human-oriented approaches to the information society.

In addition to his academic work, Himanen is a well-known cultural figure, whose interests range from the cooperation with artists (e.g. philosophical experimentations with actors and being a member of the Bangolet dance competition jury) to the media (e.g. hosting a TV series called "The Net Academy" and being constantly interviewed in all media in various countries). His university lectures have gathered audiences of more than 1,000 at best, for which he has been recognized with the Finnish Ministry of Education's award as a lecturer. He has even provoked an award-winning play called Cherished Disappointments in Love by Jouko Turkka (it is a story of an older female journalist who falls in love with a young philosopher "Pekka Himanen"), run in Finland from 1996 onwards and in London Soho Theatre in the fall 2001.

Linus Torvalds, b. 1969, is one of the most respected hackers within the computer community for creating the Linux operating system in 1991 while a student at the University of Helsinki. Since then, Linux has grown into a project involving thousands of programmers and millions of users worldwide. Currently Linux is widely seen as the main threat to Microsoft's hegemony. Torvalds works also at Transmeta, the challenger of Intel, that is developing a microchip especially for handheld devices. Torvalds has received numerous recognitions, including two asteroids named after him. Torvalds's programming is often interrupted by his favorite game, snooker. He lives in San Jose with his wife and three daughters.

Manuel Castells, b. 1942, is Professor of Sociology, and of City and Regional Planning, at the University of California, Berkeley. He has also taught and researched in more than twenty other countries authoring more than twenty books, including the highly acclaimed trilogy The Information Age and The City of the Grassroots (winner of the 1983 C. Wright Mills Award). Currently he is doing research with Pekka Himanen in Berkeley. Castells has received numerous awards and is a member of the European Academy. He lives in Berkeley with his wife.