Re: Sysop hacking

From: Gordon Worley (
Date: Wed Feb 06 2002 - 00:09:31 MST

On Wednesday, February 6, 2002, at 01:43 AM, Mitch Howe wrote:

> What I'm wondering is if anyone has any ideas about how a Sysop might
> be supremely well protected from hacking.  My background isn't
> technical enough to give any real-life examples besides "physical
> separation"  Could something as upiquitous as a Sysop realistically do
> this?

First off, it would be a major violation of volition to hack the Sysop.
The Sysop will most likely not want to be hacked, therefore ve cannot be
hacked. But, that doesn't mean an attack couldn't still be tried.

For example, the mind subversion trick might be tried. This will not
work, though, because if the Sysop is to do ver job ve would have to, in
theory, protect SIs of greater intelligence as well as those lower
intelligence from those same attacks. If the Sysop is a mind, ve is
safe here. If ve is not a mind, ve may or may not be safe depending if
ve has any intelligences to defend that are not minds. (yes, I agree,
it's a rather shaky distinction)

A physical attack would not be possible. From where I stand, it would
be logical for the Sysop to physically distribute minds in such a way
that a physical attack would require destroying the universe to take
anyone out completely. Thus, the Sysop would be pretty much safe.
Well, actually, backups stored whole in some places would be a good idea
in case too much loss occurred overall then concentrated backups in
unaffected areas could still be restored.

There's always the possibility of magic physics, but then the Sysop
would know about the magic and be able to turn it against itself

In short, a sufficiently intelligent SI should be able to create a Sysop
without bugs and holes that will create a system to prevent hacking that
will render itself unhackable. That's the idea, anyway.

Gordon Worley                     `When I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty            said, `it means just what I choose                it to mean--neither more nor less.'
PGP:  0xBBD3B003                                  --Lewis Carroll

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