On Hacking: Breaking the Code to Success

by bxrtley


[This connection just happened about 40 minutes ago. And it strengthens my argument for intentionally delaying the personal posts.]

I had a dream while taking a much-needed nap this evening. Someone hacked into my iCloud account and was sending messages to all my contacts. I was getting replies from people that I hadn’t even connected with for years. And all the sent messages were immediately erased, so I had no idea what was being communicated. I got hacked.

I abruptly awoke with paranoia and decided to change my password. The current one was rather simplistic. 8 digits, the first one being a capital letter—the only capital letter—and the last two being numbers—the only two numbers.

“Do you want to use two-step verification?” asked Apple. I opted out, thinking that maybe too much security might screw me over in the end, if I end up losing access to two out of the three security options for accessing my account.

Movie Connection (spoiler alert)

I was watching The Imitation Game before snoozing. It’s about Alan Turing who created an advanced computer that broke Enigma German code during World War II. It was the kind of movie I needed to see. A guy who’s on the brink of solving a problem, who’s on the edge of his breakthrough, and surrounded by a team who has faith that his machine will work. Reminds of the Desk app.

After waking up, I resumed watching the movie and get to the scene where the machine actually starts to work. He found out by connecting a conversation he had in a bar about love and relationships (I guess he’s a connector too!) to the commonly used terms in German communication—this would speed up the process of cracking the code.

During this pivotal moment in the movie, I was interrupted by friendly conversation and decided to embrace it by sharing my hacking dream. I then came to the realization that I’ve been using the same password for 15 years! Yep. Since my AOL years. I suppose after seeing how Alan Turing hacked a code, and my subsequent dream of being hacked like a Nazi terrorist with something to hide, it was time to let go of this password that has been so faithful to me.


The theme for this week seems to be about work.

  • Robert Greene shared how his years of seemingly disconnected jobs culminated into him being a best-selling author.
  • Wes Moore talked about his journey of “The Work”, which is discovering where his greatest passion overlaps the world’s greatest needs.
  • Margaret Keane (post on her soon) did much art which was taken for credit by her husband. But what her husband couldn’t steal was her ability to create—and that she did.
  • Alan Turing also put in work. I haven’t finished watched the movie, but it’s also clever how they paralleled his sexuality to the digital work he was doing. Almost codfying his orientation into the 1’s and 0’s.

Tonight is about hacking

Digital hacking is using a computer to gain unauthorized access to data in a system. Well, all of these people above used their computer (brain) to gain unauthorized access (opportunities) to data (success) in a system (their community).

These opportunities are deemed unauthorized because the really great, OMG opportunities aren’t just handed to you. You have to hack away at it. And not the digital tapping type hacking, but the analog fishmongering, cutting at the thing with rough, heavy blows—over and over again.

It’s called grit. And all of these people I’ve encountered this week in real life YouTube and films, possess that. Grit and Passion. You have to hack (grit) in order to hack (unlock).