Becoming a hacker today is much harder than it was during the inception of hacker culture, and the specific date of that depends on your personal viewpoint. The two that spring to my mind are 1984, the year which 2600 Magazine came into being, and the 70's, which was when the real MIT hackers got started. Anyway, in today's culture, being a hacker is really sexy. You get to destroy governments and businesses with your incredible computing power. This is of course bull, but it really appeals to prepubescent and adolescent males. Therefore, there are many wannabe hackers, or script kiddies, who try to become hackers by doing illegal things which are both stupid and pointless. This is were my dilemma began. In trying to become this type of hacker I was incredibly frustrated and eventually became tired of the whole thing. So I gave up and just went back to using linux and writing code and reading a lot. One day, I reazlied that I knew a lot of stuff. I could answer a lot of questions, because I knew a lot about technology and more than that I liked knowing a lot about technology. On that day, I knew I had become a hacker.