Since hackers have poked holes in Snapchat’s relatively lax security, many have had their way with the image sharing service’s APIs, grabbing unread messages and doing things the app doesn’t traditionally let you do. This latest hack, Little Snapper, is far and away the cutest one yet.
UK-based animator and developer Wesley Hill, who goes by the name Hako on Github, has found a way to print photos you receive through Snapchat onto a Berg Little Printer, an Internet-connected mini thermal printer that can be configured to print out updates from various news sources and social networks. In short, Snapchat photos, which are meant to be ephemeral, become permanent.
With Little Snapper, you can capture unread Snapchat images, host the image for 45 seconds to give the Little Printer time to parse, and then print the picture. After you have a black-and-white print-out, Little Snapper deletes the image. According to the description provided by Hill, Little Snapper simply requires your username and password to access your account, and only received, not sent, images are printed.
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Hill built Little Snapper as a challenge to himself, and the whole thing took about three weeks to complete. The 18-year-old told TechCrunch that he knew Snapchat’s Snaptcha system was flawed when he was able to get Little Snapper running with no more than an existing account.
“I think it was poorly implemented if you ask me,” said Hill. “The Snaptcha system wasn’t really effective, and people still got through it regardless. Snapchat’s API didn’t change much either, there was little effort involved to get past.”
If you have a Little Printer, a Snapchat addiction, and appreciate the decorating style of Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind, head on over to this landing page for the Little Snapper.