Confidence - (19-20.11 2009 Warszawa)
Język: polski | english

Richard Thieme

Temat: Hacking UFOlogy: Thirty Years in the Wilderness of Mirrors

Język: angielski

Richard Thieme is an author and professional speaker focused on the deeper implications of technology, religion, and science for twenty-first century life.

Thieme has published widely. Translated into German, Chinese, Japanese, Slovene, Dutch, Hebrew, Danish and Indonesian, his articles are taught at numerous universities in Europe, Australia, Canada, and the United States. His work has been frequently anthologized. His column, “Islands in the Clickstream,” has been published in Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, Toronto, Djakarta, Dublin and Capetown and distributed to subscribers in 60 countries.

Thieme’s passion for integrating technology and spirituality began in the eighties when he wrote “Computer Applications for Spirituality: The Transformation of Religious Experience,” an essay published by the Anglican Theological Review. He joined Bill Moyers and noted religious scholars in New York to explore religion and technology in the twenty-first century; a book based on that conference includes his 10,000- word essay “Entering Sacred Digital Space.” He spoke for the ARIL conference at MIT on spirituality and technology.

Thieme has spoken for twelve straight years for the Black Hat Briefings (intelligence and corporate security) and Def Con, an annual computer hackers’ convention. He has also spoken for security conferences such as Toor Con, PumpCon, Interz0ne West, SecurityOPUS, Xmas Con (New Orleans 2600), RubiCon, HiverCon (Dublin), ShmooCon, NotaCon and RootFest. He keynoted AUSCERT in Brisbane, Australia in 2005 and 2006 and returned to deliver a closing speech in 2007. He keynoted govcert in The Hague in 2007. He keynoted Wireless Australia 2006 and the ID Management Summit 2006 in Sydney. He keynoted Microsoft Tech Ed in consecutive years and shared the keynote platform at MIS InfoSecWorld with Bob Woodward and NBC’s Roger Cressey. In 2007 he keynoted conferences in Auckland and Wellington NZ and will return to keynote a corporatre/government security conference in Wellington in 2009. He will keynote IT Defense in Berlin in February 2009. He has been invited in addition to speak in Oslo, London, Riyadh, Dubai, Singapore and Beijing. In 2008 he participated on a panel at the esteemed New Paradigms for Security Workshop on security, ethics, and intelligence.

At DefCon VIII, he moderated a panel that included the Assistant Secretary of Defense, Dir. of Information and Infrastructure Assurance for DOD, and the Dir. of the Federal Computer Incident Response Team who came to “dialogue” with more than 5000 computer hackers. He was invited to moderate because, according to a National Security Agency officer, “You’re the only one in the room with the acceptance and respect of both the hacking community and the Feds.”

Clients include: GE Medical Systems; Medtronic; Microsoft Israel; Johnson Controls; the Pentagon; the FBI; the US Secret Service; Los Alamos National Laboratory; US Department of the Treasury; Thunderbird School of Global Management; Ajilon; OmniTech; Strong Capital Management; Neohapsis; Network Flight Recorder; Merge eFilm; System Planning Corporation (SPC); International Intelligence Ethics Association; Cypress Systems; Ross Systems; Institute for Applied Network Security (IANS); Information Systems Security Assn. (ISSA); Assn. for Investment Management and Research (AIMR); Alliant Energy; Wisconsin Electric; UOP; Firstar Bank; Financial Services – Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC); Psynapse/Center for the Advancement of Intelligent Systems; IT Defense; MAPICS; MIS Training Institute WebSec, HealthSec, and InfoSec Conferences; Influent Technology Group; Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co.; Advanced Health Care; Navy Federal Credit Union; Allstate Insurance; American Council of Life Insurance; Conference of State Legislatures; Society for Technical Communication; the Attorney General of the State of Wisconsin; the Governor’s Conference on Economic Development; and numerous colleges and universities, including Purdue University – CERIAS; Alverno College, Mount Mary College, Stritch University; Marquette University; U of Wisconsin – Madison, Eau Claire and Milwaukee; and the Technology, Literacy and Culture Distinguished Speakers Series of the University of Texas.

Thieme’s creative use of the Internet to reach global markets has earned accolades around the world. He is a member of the “cyber avant-garde,” according to CNN … “a prominent American techno-philosopher” according to LAN Magazine (Australia) … “a father figure for online culture,” according to the (London) Sunday Telegraph … “a keen observer of hacker attitudes and behaviors” according to/ Le Monde/ (Paris) … “one of the most creative minds of the digital generation” according to the editors of/ CTHEORY /and /Digital Delirium /and …/ /”an online pundit of hacker culture” according to the L A Times … and “extremely subtle and deep” according to the Linux Journal.


  • “Richard Thieme’s Islands in the Clickstream” – a collection of work from the past eight years, was published in July 2004 by Syngress Publishing.
  • “Entering Sacred Digital Space” – published in New Paradigms for Bible Study: The Bible in the Third Millennium from T. & T. Clark, Ltd., June 2004.
  • */Identity/Destiny/* published in “Prophecy Anthology, Volume 1,” a full-color book featuring sequential art by artists such as Shannon Wheeler, Scott McCloud, Sho Murase, Yuko Shimizu, Nathan Fox and Bernie Mireault by Sequent Media (2004).
  • “/The Changing Context of Intelligence and Ethics: Enabling Technologies as Transformational Engines/” *Defense Intelligence Journal (accepted). Revised as */“The Changing Context of Security and Ethics”/* for the New Paradigms in Sceurity Workship (2008) and published at the Ethical Spectacle (2009)
  • short stories in Analog Science Fiction, Ascent, The Puckerbrush Review, Timber Creek Review, Porcupine, Zahir, anotherealm, Pacific Coast Journal, The Future Fire, Bewildering Stories, The Potomac Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Combat, Karamu, Heartlands, The Circle Magazine, The Listening Ear, Words on Walls, Nth Degree, NthZine, Down in the Dirt, EWG, Phrack, Erotic Fiction Quarterly, Golf, Rogue …
  • articles in: Forbes, Salon, Information Security, The Gardian (Infragard), Secure Business Quarterly, LAN Magazine, Village Voice, LA Weekly, South Africa Computer Magazine, Wired, Counter Punch, The Pedestal Magazine, Common Dreams, alternet, Internet Underground, National Catholic Reporter, Asia Times Online, .net, Internet Today, Pravda, rebelion, ATTAC Madrid, Computing Japan, Business Times of Singapore, Convergence (Toronto), Computer Underground Digest, CTHEORY, DoubleClick, Ethical Spectacle, Small Business Times, Computer Mediated Communication, Skeptica (Denmark), Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Informatiebeveiliging (Netherlands). Now Magazine (Toronto), Future Briefs, Access Control & Security Systems, Bangladesh Report, Phrack, The Witness …
  • articles anthologized in /Digital Delirium/, /Cyber Reader II/, /Cyberculture/ (UK).
  • fiction anthologized in /CyberTales: Live Wire; Chaos Theory; Distinguished Writing: A Master‘s Journal;A Whortleberry Summer; Autumn Glory; /and/ Subtle Edens (November 2008: London). /
  • / /the short stories /Gibby the Sit-down King/, published in/ /the /Timber Creek Review, /and /The Man Who Hadn’t Disappeared/, pubished in /Karamu/, have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize/./


‘You’re over the line,’ an intelligence professional told Richard Thieme recently. ‘You know enough to know what’s not true but you can’t know enough to know what is. You’re well into the wilderness of mirrors.’

Hacking one complex system is always in some ways like hacking another. You must see nested levels of the context that others assume and which is therefore invisible, you must see through the story that the system tells about itself, and you must have a means of filtering out disinformation and misinformation while suspending belief in the patterns your own mind suggests along the way. You must never believe what you think until the evidence is compelling. And you must have a way of staying sane when the consensus reality that has knitted you into its tissue is challenged at its core.

Ever since a USAF fighter pilot with the ‘right stuff’ told Richard Thieme (who was then his Episcopal clergyman) in 1978 that ‘we chase the things and can’t catch them’ — Thieme has explored this domain with beginner’s eyes and an open mind. He has interviewed astronauts and NASA psychologists, physicists and social scientists, and scholars in ‘the invisible college’ who conduct serious research and rigorous historical analysis. He has compared notes with intelligence professionals who believe that the least unlikely hypothesis for some of the data is, as one said, ‘a cultural intrusion’ over many decades.

In this presentation, Thieme shows how “hacking the system” of data, disinformation, and “true believers” in an environment which has been saturated with ridicule since 1952, when critical elements of the government made a decision to debunk reports and those making them, is like hacking any complex system in our world of huge black budgets, appropriate paranoia, psy ops, and obsessive secrecy.

This presentation will make you think. It will make you re-examine your presuppositions about what is real. It will at the least bring you face to face with the possibility that you have been “owned” by the managers of perception who appointed themselves guardians of the Bigger Picture – an awareness that animates all real hackers.