TL;DR; NSC is freaking amazing. Sell your house, kids or 0day, just get there
MWR’s Nils and Jon were presenting about how they pwned Chrome at NSC2013 and after looking at the schedule and knowing the Syndis guys would throw an awesome conference, I decided to tag along.
NSC is held in Reykjavik, Iceland. I’d never been to Iceland before and this was part of the experience. Iceland is a staggeringly beautiful country and the blue lagoon is probably the most picturesque place I’ve had a beer. The food, people and scenery are all incredible. If (when) you go to NSC, do take some time to explore Iceland and renting a 4×4 is recommended too.
The conference was at the Hilton and had some great speakers. Morning was filled with keynotes and management talks, lunchtime had a perspective talk and then the afternoon the technical talks divided into offensive and defensive. Particular highlights were:
The conference party was one of the best I had been to. With a conference size of around 200, it was actually possible to meet new people and swap ideas over beer. The venue was an upsettingly trendy modern building filled with antique furniture and the evening was capped off by a set from Dr. Raid including burns such as “you couldn’t 0wn a box if you purchased it”.
The CTF finals were held at the stunning Reykjavik University and took the form of 9 contestants each with a VM having to both attack other’s VMs and defend their own for an hour. A few of our interns made it through to the final and one flew out for the competition. It was compère’d by Syndis’ Ymir who did a great job making hacking into a spectator sport. Congrats to all who played but particularly the winner Sölvi who had prepared some tidy ready-to-roll scripts ready that put him into a fairly unassailable lead within minutes.
Amazing country, speakers, people, party and CTF. If I get to pick one conference for next year it’s going to be NSC unless someone finally launches BoraBoraCon.