Interview with iconic hacker Captain Crunch


Legendary hacker John Draper is known under the alias of Captain Crunch since he used a Captain Crunch cereal whistle to make free phone calls. Draper then built the phone phreaking tool called blue box that made free calls by making phone calls appear to be toll-free 800-number calls. The computer programmer and former phone phreak inspired Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak who founded Apple Computer. Draper also invented EasyWriter, the first ever word processor for the Apple II. But after a freak hugging accident at Def Con, Draper was at risk of losing the use of his hands and arms.

Draper was in great pain and asked his fans and supporters to help him raise $10,000 for a critical surgery -- his out-of-pocket expenses for post surgery care or other surgery costs not covered by Medicare. Without the surgery and therapy, Draper would no longer be able to code or use his hands at all.

Interview with John Draper aka Captain Crunch

What was the overzealous fan hugging/thanking you for at Def Con where you sustained your injury?

John Draper: The "jerkoff" was stone drunk...

What was your favorite hack and why?

John Draper:  Hacking into iPhone internals, then getting the exploit through Apple's auditors.

Did you ever feel bitter for being put in prison?

John Draper:  Yes - that's why I made sure all  my info gets out in the open.

Who was the better student in phone phreaking skills, Steve Jobs or Steve Wozniak?

John Draper:  Wozniak - Job's was not interested in hacking at all.

How soon do the surgeons advise that you must have your surgery before the nerves wither, making the use of your hands, and coding, impossible?

John Draper:  I was told 6 months....but (yay) I had my surgery on 21st of Dec, and my hands are healing, but they are still somewhat painful, but I'm typing with my fingers now instead of using MacSpeech Dictate.


That's right, generous people came through for Draper and the $10,000 was raised. Now on Saving Captain Crunch, Draper announced that he wants to say thank you to each of the good-hearted folks who donated. If you helped finance his surgery/recovery, you can Meet With Crunch for an hour.

According to the iconic hacker: 

The discussion is WIDE OPEN, and even topics like "How to hack" is also fair game, but questions like this is going to require a two part meeting.... IE: set your questions or goals in first half hour, then a few days later, schedule a time to meet with me again where I'll have done up to an hours worth of research to find your answers, or better yet, how to find them yourself.

These meetings will be via skype face-to-face, web cam required.... I want to see and meet my donors and thank them personally via Skype.

Didn't donate toward Captain Crunch's surgery but still want to video chat with him? There is a PayPal button in numerous places on the Saving Captain Crunch site.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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