ToorCon is San Diego's exclusive hacker conference that traditionally takes place in late September. Started originally by the San Diego 2600 user group, ToorCon was founded in 1999 by Ben Greenberg and David Hulton (h1kari). The first year it was held at the University of California, San Diego's Price Center and was later moved to the San Diego Concourse for the 2nd and 3rd year. The 4th year was held at the Westin Gaslamp, 5th and 6th at the Manchester Grand Hyatt, the 7th to 13th conferences were held at the San Diego Convention Center, and most recently the 14th and 15th conferences were held at the Westin Emerald Plaza in San Diego.
Starting in 2007, ToorCon Seattle was held at Last Supper Club, Pioneer Square, Seattle, Washington. ToorCamp was first held in 2009 in an Eastern Washington abandoned missile silo, and on the Washington state coast in 2012 and 2014. WorldToor 2013 was held in Antarctica on a cruise ship.
ToorCon attracts many of the top leaders in the computer security community and has been known for its small-conference atmosphere, bringing together around 400 attendees annually.
Talks at ToorCon range from device hacking and reverse engineering, to protocol analysis, cryptographic algorithms, and all-around security issues. Each year ToorCon has a particular theme to the talks, and is split into two opposing tracks. In 2006, the theme was "Bits and Bytes." in 2005, the theme was "Smoke and Mirrors."
Along with two parallel tracks that run over the course of ToorCon weekend, there are also vendor tables and games. Usually featuring at least one book publisher such as Syngress or No Starch Press, a hardware vendor, and a t-shirt printer. Capture the Flag is one of the recurring games over the weekend.
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