Hybris is one of those words that cannot be easily translated into any other language, but since the word, and concept it represents, are so essential to Greek culture and way of thinking, I'm going to anyway.

Hybris might be translated as 'excessive pride', but it is more than that. It is the will of a man (or woman) to surpass his (or her) alotted destiny, the destiny of mankind, and the will to be better (or equal) to the gods.

Boasts about being better than the gods (or a god) are also considered hybris, and as such, the person who sins in it will be punished by the gods.

Fear of hybris dominated much of the life of the Greeks, for instance, the Greeks hardly ever built bridges, because bridges were considered a double hybris: they shackled the river (almost always a god by his own right), and connected what the gods chose to seperate.

In his "History" Herodotus attributes Xerses defeat in the Persian War to hybris, not only did Xerses want to rule over two continents (Asia and Europe) he also built a bridge over the bosphorus!

Apollo is the god that usually punishes over such crimes and does so with extreme cruelty.

Classic examples of hybris in Greek myth are the stories of Niobe and Marsias.

Hybris is also the daimon that is responsible for this sin.

A worm for Windows that rocked the world in early 2001. Known aliases IWorm_Hyrbis and I-Worm.Hybris.

It spread as an attachment to E-mails. What makes it remarkable is that it modifies the infected machine's WSOCK32.DLL, hooking itself to the calls the machine uses to communicate with the world. Then, it has the ability to listen to all network traffic.

It listens to the traffic for E-mail addresses, and upon learning of that, it sends a copy of itself via E-mail to that address!

It is even able to read newsgroups and get plugins for itself from there!

Easy identification field guide for basic "mutations" caused by plugins:

  • Attachment may have a random name (like JHEWHEWE.EXE)
  • From: Hahaha <hahaha@sexyfun.net>, content may have something about sex (like "Snowhite and the Seven Dwarfs - The REAL story!")

Personally, I have got only those two variants; there are more. Consult web for more information. And remember, kids, never run executables you get as an attachment!

(Source: F-Secure)

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