With the recent rise to fame of LulzSec, teamed up with Anonymous, and their “Internet-terrorism”, it comes as a surprise to find that there are some hacking groups out there doing good.
Jailbreaking involves unlocking a mobile phone’s operating system in order to install applications which are not approved by the phone’s manufacturer. A hacker group created a jailbreak solution for the Windows Phone 7, calling it ChevronWP7. When Microsoft heard about the existence of the program, they decided to use the hacker groups’ expertise, rather than slam the law at them.
It turned out that both Microsoft and the creators of ChevronWP7 had the same goal – they both wanted a way to support home-developed programs, not software piracy.
According to the hackers’ blog post (http://www.chevronwp7.com/post/6629433362/announcing-chevronwp7-labs), the new Windows Phone unlocking service developed by ChevronWP7 Labs is almost here. And it will be available to developers of all skills levels at a small fee.
In other news, Google is also bringing a good name to hackers with the Random Hacks of Kindness (RHoK) program. This program was started in 2009, and had a 5th international meeting in a number of cities this June.
According to Google, the idea behind the program is that “technology can and should be used for good.” The group’s main task is to develop open source software solutions to address disaster challenges.
Applications that have been developed include shelter-management systems during major disasters, disaster messaging using mobile messaging or Person Finder, and a visual tool that may alleviate damage from landslides by mapping landslide risk.