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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Can Doom run on a printer? ...yes

Do you know what I hate?

Well.. do ya? Do ya really? You don't? Well. Let me tell you.
My printer. My piece of shit, ink-guzzling HP that charges something like $80 to replace all the cartridges. Every time I try to use it, it abruptly stops what I'm trying to do so it can 'prepare'. That usually takes a couple of minutes, and it's completely random. I hate it.
It's old too. We literally bought it with the money that Kevin Rudd gave us during the 2008 financial crisis so we'd spend up big and not fall into a blackhole of recession. Because of its vintage, it doesn't have luxuries that printers these days automatically include like wireless of double-sided printing.

tl;dr: Damn that piece of shit to electronics Hell along with the Game.com and the Apple Bandai Pippin.

But maybe I should chill out and read more 'Birds of Australia'.

But what if I had something to do while waiting for that invasive preparation? What if I had a classic game to play, something that could run on just about everything? What if that game... was Doom?
It turns out that's not so much of a stretch as far as Michael Jordon is concerned.
Not the basket-baller, sadly, but Jordon is a white-hat hacker for a firm called Context Information Security. He figured out that Canon Pixma printers are not so secure thanks to a feature that lets users access them from the web. That may not sound too malicious, but Jordon also discovered that it was so unsecured to an extent that he could actually upload his own custom firmware.
Doom can run on everything supposedly (which thankfully Jordon knows) so he spent the next four months coding a custom ROM, getting it almost perfect for a hacker conference on the subject.

Here's a video of it in action:

Obviously the colour palette is bit off and there are no controls or sound (it appears it be running in demo mode) but this is undoubtedly Doom on a printer and that is awesome.
Canon says they will be adding a fix sooner or later, but it just goes to show what can run on what in this day and age.

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