Appendix B. A Portrait of J. Random Hacker

This profile reflects detailed comments on an earlier ‘trial balloon’ version from about a hundred Usenet respondents. Where comparatives are used, the implicit ‘other’ is a randomly selected segment of the non-hacker population of the same size as hackerdom.

An important point: Except in some relatively minor respects such as slang vocabulary, hackers don't get to be the way they are by imitating each other. Rather, it seems to be the case that the combination of personality traits that makes a hacker so conditions one's outlook on life that one tends to end up being like other hackers whether one wants to or not (much as bizarrely detailed similarities in behavior and preferences are found in genetic twins raised separately).