Happy birthday, Dad!

War driving is what they call driving around with an 802.11b (aka Airport) card looking for open wireless networks. Joe and I got up this morning, drove through Battle Ground, and found dozens. Many if not most of them were unencrypted, meaning one could make a go at hacking the system given the time and desire. We really had neither since this was more a voyage of discovery than anything else.

Still, the last network we stumbled upon was wide open. I had complete access to the poor shmoe’s hard drive, and could’ve copied or deleted any files I chose. Instead we dropped a helpful “you might want to fix this” text file on his main directory. I figured that if we don’t warn him the next war driver might not be as charitable. We literally could have done anything we wanted to his computer system, and he may never have been the wiser.

So in case it’s not immediately obvious, war driving is a lot of fun. Part of it’s like being on the trail of a mystery. It’s computer-centric which is enjoyable for us geek-types. And of course the opportunity to hang with friends could be considered the primary motivation to begin with. If I can ever get ahead in the financial game, I might look at adding a GPS to my Mac so that I can go war driving and log specific locations. That’d be even more da bomb.

After Erin, Jonah, and I returned to Salem, we headed over to my parents to celebrate my dad’s birthday. Good Davison times. Way too much food, happy conversation, and joy for a single meeting. We loaded Dad up with a bird feeder and plants and things, and I did my requisite fun time on their Power Mac G3. (Next up: A hard drive swap, from 6 GB to 120 GB.) We returned home some time after 9 PM, content in the knowledge that thanks to family and friends we’d been able to shrug off the latest auto-induced headache and have a great weekend. Thank you all.