Hackers are the elite corps of computer designers and programmers. They like to see themselves as the wizards and warriors of tech...and in the off-hours, they can turn their ingenuity to sparring with enemies on the Nets, or to the midnight stroll through systems you should not be able to enter, were you not so very clever. It’s a high-stress life, but it can be amazing fun. Imagine being paid — well-paid — to play forever with the toys you love. Imagine.”1
--Judith Milhon ("St. Jude")

St. Jude passed away this past weekend, sometime between July 18, 2003 and July 19, 2003; I was made aware of this in an e-mail from an unknown party today, presumably a friend or family member, who ran across the interview2 we did with Milhon, back in 1996 for an online magazine, Verbosity.

Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2003 12:00:41 -0700 (PDT)
From: (name witheld by request)
Subject: St. Jude (Jude Milhon) has passed away.

Last night I was looking for stuff on the web
about Jude, and I found an interview you did
with her. So I thought you might want to know.

She had been fighting cancer and was losing her
battle; Saturday night she embraced the inevitable
by taking her own life.

Ms. Milhon's death was confirmed for me in a private correspondence with R.U. Sirius, former founder and editor-in-chief of Mondo 2000, a publication that often featured her works. In addition to Mondo 2000, and the books mentioned in the writeup above, Jude was also an occasional writer for Wired.

Considered by some to be one of the first female "hackers", St. Jude's literary prowess was also something with which to be reckoned. Jude was known for her well-timed cynicism and often humourous commentary, and it was with these skills that Milhon became something of a feminist spokesperson who raised awareness of the growing numbers of women in the world of technology -- not only in the private sector but in the computer underground, as well.

Though sometimes outspoken, Ms. Milhon, like Grace Murray Hopper, was a pioneer in showing that women can "hack it" just as easily as men can, in the field.

...Godspeed, St. Jude...

Works Referenced and Footnotes
  • 1"Wired Women: It's a Guy Thing" (ABC News) : http://abcnews.go.com/sections/tech/WiredWomen/wiredwomen000223.html
  • 2Interview can be found at: http://verbosity.wiw.org/issue1/stjude.html