Archive for the RockStar Category


“I am the Greatest” – Muhammad Ali

Muhammad, an incredible technically skilled boxer, enormously propelled his career with self promotional Rock Star tactics such as claiming “I am The Greatest!” His non-boxing (or non-geek if you prefer) skills were greatly responsible for his enormous success. Muhammad Ali is certainly one of the greatest boxers to live, both in the ring and out […]

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Authors are Experts

A Rock Star is an expert, and many are authors. If you an author, you are automatically considered an expert. (Author may or may not mean book) And of course some of you will immediately revolt here, as you claim you do not know how to write or perhaps are a poor writer or maybe […]

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Speakers are Experts

Rockstars are experts, and many are speakers. If you are “the Speaker” you are automatically considered an expert. Some of you will immediately revolt here, as you claim you do not know enough yet to speak and maybe you are terrified of speaking. We all have useful information we can share! First of all, we […]

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How to be an Instant Expert

A Rock Star is an expert! There are  two ways to be perceived as an (instant) expert. Now ideally you are an expert AND perceived as an expert, but quite honestly, most of us are totally confused as to what an expert is. Before we dive in we had better agree on what an “Expert” […]

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People Get What They Expect

One reason positioning, what people think about you, is so hard to change, is that people get what they expect. Here are four examples: “The project was late” vs. “Ted messed it up” At one client I could do no wrong. If a project blew up, it was a bad project or circumstances changed or […]

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Be The First, the go to guy (or gal)

The spoils go to the victor, the first. Often it’s the first in the mind, the go to guy or gal. The second is frequently far far behind. The 5th is always lost in the pack. Do you want to be the BEST forensics person or pentester or whatever LOST in the pack? The first […]

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In Infosec: You are what you . . .

Although it’s not quite as simple as “You are what you eat” . . . Unless you really are one of the top Rock Stars in your field and can do occasional stupid shit just because you want to (think George Clooney in “Men Who Stare at Goats), the issues below matter. They matter a […]

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Be so good they can’t ignore you – Steve Martin

“Be so good they can’t ignore you” – Steve Martin Steve Martin is one incredible dude. I’ve been a fan since his 1978 comedy album “Let’s Get Small.” I saw him live shortly thereafter doing comedy including his infamous “Cat Juggling” bit. In a high school English class we actually analyzed his comedy. He is […]

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A Mission from God, Blues Brothers Style: Kenneth G. Hartman

I met Kenneth G. Hartman at a security event in Madison in a few years ago and we’ve stayed in touch. I’m impressed with his creative approach to security as well as life, and he’s definitely provided great input for this site. Ken also jumped at the opportunity to write a guest post, and it’s […]

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Comfortable with Uncomfortable: geek2great

I ran into Keith Croxford and his excellent geek2great (Because ‘Average’ is Overrated!) recently online and am so happy he decided to contribute. Also check out his superb videos here! Let’s a take wild guess and assume that your daily schedule resembles a Python script called by Cron. Ok, maybe not Python, I like Python. […]

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Geek Success: Guest Post by Cindy Murphy

I reached out to Cindy Murphy for her input, and what she wrote up is awesome. And here it is – Ted I am happy to provide input, because the “DFIR Rock Star” conversation is one that I always find interesting. I guess I could probably be considered an ‘incidental’ digital forensics rock star… one […]

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What Determines Your Pay the Most?

We as humans think a lot about money. Our parents probably tried to steer most of us into a field where there was lots of money to be made. At Dartmouth for example, almost everyone was “Pre Med” as it was seen as a very lucrative field. In infosec, we are in a well paid […]

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Positioning: What People Think About You Matters

Positioning is the idea that everything holds a position in someone’s mind, and that position matters and is very difficult to change. If people think you and your department suck, life is going to be tough For example, if you are well respected and have a reputation for getting things done, and one of your […]

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That “Personal Branding” thing

A brand is a promise It is the position something holds in your mind. It is what prevents something from being a commodity. An example is Starbucks. When I think of Starbucks, I think of a strong, although over roasted to my taste, cup of coffee and a comfortable place to sit (with all the […]

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This Vision Thing – Whattaya Wanta Become

While a (personal) mission statement is your why, a vision statement is a where, as in where are you going long term, where do you want to end up. It really is worth spending some time thinking about what your mission is. Similarly, your vision is critical. Click here to jump straight to the action […]

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(Personal) Mission Statements: Step Zero Point Five

Companies spend millions of dollars coming up with mission statements: often they suck. Stephen R. Covey came up with the idea of having a person mission statement in The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People in 1989. Personal Mission Statements, which may also be called purpose statements or similar, are common today, a quarter century […]

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Become a Rock Star: Step Zero

Of course step zero is the first step since most of us are geeks, post geeks, or sometimes neo geeks. Whatever this may mean, many of us like to start counting at “zero.” Decide You rarely become a Rock Star by accident. You love this stuff. You are here for the long haul. You want […]

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Three Rock Star Assumptions

I’m making three assumptions here about you, gentle reader: Security is more than just a job to you You actually like what you do. No, not every single part of work, but you rather like working in security, you like it a lot. A lot a lot a lot. Maybe you got into this field […]

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Great Ideas Suck, Part II, The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

In Part I, I wrote about how there are so many great ideas out there, that they are common and hence pretty worthless. What is not common is a great idea that is actually implemented. In other words, getting off your butt and doing something, bringing that idea to fruition, implementing it, “shipping” it as […]

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Great Ideas Suck, Part I

As a Rock Star, you need new ideas. Can you think of any Rock Stars that only play covers? The thing is, there are lots of great ideas. They are common. I come up with enough great ideas in a year to last a lifetime, and great ideas are generally useless. “Ideas are a dime […]

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Success: What’s it mean to you?

A Rock Star by definition is successful. If you are not successful, you are no Rock Star! But what is success? It is clear that the definition of success varies by individual, and successful for me might be miserable for you, and vice versa. The definition of success varies by individual. Maybe you go to […]

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So You Want To Be A Consultant?

I get a lot of questions about becoming a consultant. I’ve been a consultant for close to 25 years, so I should know something about it. In reality, not so much, but I can share what I know and recommend an awesome resource or two. Consulting seems like a Rock Star life at first. I […]

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What’s a RockStar anyways?

As I’ve said, this is a community project, so I’ve started a number of my talks asking people to yell out exactly what they think when they hear the word “Rock Star” – here are the most popular responses, with some discussion attached: Extremely good at what they do Yup, Rock Stars are damn good […]

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