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Regular readerz of 29A zinez surely expectz some stoned article about my insane thoughtz :) well, here is it.

Many ppl that watch a bit the VX scene figured out that something's wrong. The scene and many thingz inside it ain't no more what it used to be. Some coderz talk about "dying", "decadency", some of them talk at least about really serious problemz. What happened? Old, elite and active coderz leave or only stop contributing to the scene. Script kiddiez and their so called "viruses/wormz" rule the cyberworld. Suddenly it's very problem to find new, perspective coderz. Many VX groupz are dead or inactive. AVerz earnz money from ppl that are becoz of their 99,99% stupidity responsible for big viral epidemiez (aka "click-on-me" wormz). Where are those elite coderz, elite groupz? Where are those high-tech viruses which "yesterday" ruled the world? Decandency.

What reasonz caused this situation?

  1. The scene is getting old

    When Windows95 came it divided scene to two piecez - the old (dos) school (dying) and new (win32) school (very perspective). It took very long time until all needed secretz've been discovered and showed in high-tech viruses (such as in the old school).

    Now, Win32/Linux rule the world - old techniquez are very well known and it seemz we can un-hide only minor secretz or only advance the known onez.

    Maybe the stagnacy in VX scene is becoz almost everything has been discovered (and now the only thing what's left is - also becoz of Internet phenomena existence - coding exploitz and wormz using them). Maybe the scene only needz another battle field, new wide-spreaded operating system, new architecture, new target. Will it be .NET?

  2. Coderz are getting old

    In a DOS age there were many groupz and elite coderz. When old coderz decided to leave, there alwayz've been any other cool coder that could fill the blank space.

    Now it seemz the scene ain't able to motivate new coderz. Maybe Win32 architecture is too complex to understand for beginnerz.

    Perhaps it's also a sub-part of (1) point - current architecture(z) ain't atractive much for new coderz, so when old elite coderz leave the scene, there are no beginnerz that can fill the blank space and so bring something new.

  3. Groupz are getting old

    Next sub-part of the big problem. Groupz are more sensitive to (2) point than the whole scene (suprisely, becoz VX group is smaller than the scene).

    Average-and-low-level groupz dying naturaly, that's normal thing. But where are those elite world-wide-infamous groupz? They are getting inactive becoz there are no promising/quality beginnerz and elite coderz can't keep the quantity and/or quality of their stuff, that's also natural process.

    So, groupz are getting more and more inactive and finally, they got disbanned. Beginnerz that can't join some elite group (becoz of low knowledge level) sometimez they found new group that diez very soon becoz of NO new good memberz and becoz they usualy aren't able to learn more.

    Again, the main reason is that there ain't enough new good beginnerz.

  4. VX scene ain't so popular

    Yeah, that's also one of many reasonz. Our step-brotha'z from hacking scene have much bigger publicity. And there's also the fact, that to become average hacker ain't so hard as to become average virus coder. Starting 90s the world-wide international network called Internet is exponencionaly spreading among computer freax. In the past the coding was much more available than hanging on the net all the day and probing serverz. Now, when almost everybody can be regularly connected to Internet the hacking is much more popular than learning assembler, Win32 architecture, memory addressing, processor detailz etc etc...

  5. HLLz rule the world

    Yeah, the sad fact. Win32 architecture is full of so called high-level languagez (HLLz) and they have the maximal support of the environment. Low-level programing ain't so popular and easy such clicking by mouse and so creating high-functional program.

    Also, coderz take the assembler as their hobby, much more than their job. Beginnerz (and today I don't wonder, you do?) try to learn visual programming, becoz that will be their future job. Assembler is the least perspective language now. Sad fact.

  6. Viruses ain't so popular

    In the past, viruses were the most spreaded becoz ppl mainly shared their data on diskette, disks etc.. programz were small, effectively coded and very often copied.

    Today, one computer game fitz to two DVDz. Today you share data on Internet, read-only diskz etc..

    EXE-infectorz were so popular becoz the age allowed that. Today, wormz that can effectively spread via large networkz (remember Flash worm idea? 15 secondz, pffff) are much more popular than well written, but hardly spreadable virusez.

  7. Virus coding/spreading is prohibited

    Big problem. Many coderz that spreaded their viruses got arrested and beginnerz don't want to participate on it and dig their own grave. Yeah, for instance I don't spread viruses, I never did it and so I never had such problemz. But code virusez and not spread them, it soundz for beginnerz like making a breakfast and throwing it outta window. Sad fact. VXing is (for me) sharing ideaz, learning new thingz, reaching higher knowledge level, much more than damaging and making problemz. And for) instance, when you are hacking, you alwayz make damagez, but when you are coding, you don't need to.

    To such beginnerz that decide to not code viruses becoz they can't spread I can say this: You want to spread viruses becoz you want to become fame, that's what it's all about. Look at me, I've been many timez in CNN, newspaperz, TV, radio etc etc.. I can say I AM famous (even when it's not my target to be famous); and I've achieved the fame better way than like a terrorist.

So, that were 7 main reasonz why the scene is in the situation as it is. Now, we should ask ourself what we can do with it. I'm sure the 2002 year ain't the right age for the VX scene end. Well, what we are able to do?

  1. Think about it

    This is the 1st and the most important point. If you are beginning, average or elite coder, if you are in some group or not, you should know that the future of the scene dependz on you. Yeah, even on you! Don't forget to share your knowledge and spread it, as much as you can.

  2. Publish your work in some zine

    Don't let yourself, your flame of knowledge burn out! Becoz the scene ain't you, even not me... the scene is ALL active coderz and groupz. And if you keep your ideaz for yourself, if you don't contribute to scene, you've simply wasted your time while you was coding.

  3. Join some good VX group

    Maybe some independent coderz won't agree with me, but in good group (and 29A is fucking good group :-) coderz easier learn new thingz, share ideaz, make co-operative projectz, publish the work and teach otherz. That's why I'm telling you "go and join some good VX group". Don't be selfish and think on the scene.

    Yeah, there are some well known coderz that aren't memberz of any group, and they contribute fucking well. Yeah, becoz they are "residentz" of the scene, they know the scene a lot and understand it. But for beginnerz it's much better to join some group, becoz in the group goes everything faster (i.e. learning process, netiquette etc).

  4. Be opened to otherz

    Yeah, that's it. In the past, when VXing was very popular, there raised many VX groupz - they wanted to show otherz their vision of virus coding. VX groupz looked for the first sight like some kind of sect or clan. Now, VX groupz loox they aren't able to keep the activity, even when they have very smart memberz. Simply, the reason of existence of big amount of small groupz disappearz.

    I think VX groupz shoud co-operate much more than now, becoz they ALL create the scene, not one group, one member, but everyone who contributez. If everything will go well, 29A, iKX and Matrix groupz will publish their first common e-zine.

  5. Represent the scene right way

    Some ppl that call themself "coderz/hackerz/vxerz" represent the scene like a 6-year old insane child. For them it's not problem to go to some newsgroup and show all ppl how stupid are them - "Im l33t hax0r & I'll fl00d ya heh". They mainly forget that they set bad light on the scene. For instance, I already wrote many articlez for virus-related sitez where I commented this and much more thingz. When someone ask me for interview (e.g. newspaperz, magazinez, TV, radio etc..), I always do it - and there I try to explain thingz that are usualy misunderstood. Not becoz of my personal fame, but for the VX scene.

    I do it becoz I am angry. Really. When I contribute somewhere with "Benny/29A" nickname, ppl usualy call me "terrorist". I promised myself that I will try to do everything to correct the vision of all those ppl who think that. I don't want to feel shame when I say "I am virus coder"! Well, today when I talk publicly somewhere, I find there many ppl that agree that the virus-coding can be some kind of art. And big percent of them have such opinion becoz of all my articlez and my activitiez. That's very fine to know! Ppl accept us as very good programmerz, more than silly ppl that cause damagez.

    I believe that this is also our target - to show ppl that the "virus-coder" meanz "very good programmer" - it helpz the scene very much to look more atractively!

Huh, seemz that's all. Perhaps I forgot to mention something, but I'm already tired (and not so stoned as on the beginning :-P). Anyway, I hope this article motivated you a bit, becoz that was the reason why I wrote it. I hope you'll help us to rebuild the vx scene, help the scene with problemz it has... if we don't want to destruct what we built in past yearz. Think about it!

		.			Benny / 29A
		.			benny@post.cz
		.			http://benny29a.cjb.net
		... perfectionist, maximalist, idealist, dreamer ...