How a side project lead me to my current job
I read many stories on Internet about how people started to work on something just to feed their curiosity and ended up being their full-time job, or in another cases, it becomes the proxy to achieve something else they didn’t expected.
Posted in Stories
April 16, 2020 - 3 min read
Suddenly, this happened to me a few months ago, while I was showing to my landlord these two little Pwnagotchis.
So here is my story. This time I found a project on Github Explore’s page that required a little of linux and programming knowledge to setup it. And to make it look cool, I also needed it a e-Ink display and Raspberry Pi.
What’s a Pwnagotchi anyway?
Here is the explanation from the official website:
Pwnagotchi is an A2C-based “AI” powered by bettercap and running on a Raspberry Pi Zero W that learns from its surrounding WiFi environment in order to maximize the crackable WPA key material it captures (either through passive sniffing or by performing deauthentication and association attacks).
A perfect excuse, isn’t it? So the project got my attention right away. I cloned the source code and run it from my computer. Besides some troubleshooting installing python dependencies, the process to set up it on OS X and later on Raspbian was super smooth.
But running it on my laptop I was missing half of the fun. The point of the project is to go outside and give to the Pawnagotchi as many WiFi handshakes to eat as possible. So I orderer two e-Ink displays for the RPis that I already had at home. In the meantime, I reviewed the code and the fundamentals of the AI part of the software 🤓.
After the displays arrived I was ready to go for a walk around the neighborhood and... release the Krakens! Being able to see the activity of the Machine Learning process in a form of friendly UI was pretty fun.
The next step was trying to crack the handshakes stored on the
/root/handshakes/ folder inside the pwnagotchi’s memory, using some kind of bruteforce attack. I found this tutorial while ago that explained how to use Aircrack-ng/Hashcat and some third-party services like GPUHASH.me or OnlineHashCrack. Without making any progress I gave up.
By the end of December, I was checking on Facebook market looking for a new place to live with Melania. Not too excited about the options we had, I sent a request to a guy that was renting a cozy apartment located in Litcherfelde. He immediately answered and booked me an appointment for Sunday afternoon, I was the first on the list.
We went there with Melush, met the owner, and after a quick check, the aparment was everything we needed it. While discussing about the details of contract, we talked a little bit about us, and that’s when we found we both worked on IT. I had my Pawnagotchi’s with me, so I thought it would be a good idea to show him my toys. After a few more minutes of talking about nerdy stuff, he told me they were looking for IoT Developers to work on a special project they had, and if I was interested he could introduce me with the team and move forward with the hiring process.
Without knowing it yet, that day I went back home with a new place to live and a new job!