KEYNOTE 1: The Upside of Falling Down: Embracing Failure to be a Better Hacker (and Human)


August 24, 2023




Track 1

Everyone fails, we just might not want to admit it. While we mostly hear about the positive outcomes of projects or exploits, the behind-the-scenes struggles are equally as important. As hackers, failure is necessary in order to push boundaries and level up our skills, trying and trying again even though it can be frustrating or painful at the time. In this light-hearted presentation of facepalm-worthy moments, Joe will share some of his technical (and not-so-technical) failures and the lessons he learned from them.


Grand Idea Studio

Joe Grand (@joegrand), also known as Kingpin, is a computer engineer, hardware hacker, teacher, advisor, daddy, honorary doctor, occasional video maker, member of legendary hacker group L0pht Heavy Industries, proprietor of Grand Idea Studio (, and co-founder of He has been creating, exploring, and manipulating electronic systems since the 1980s.