The term hacking has a bad reputation in the press. They use it to refer to someone who breaks into systems or wreaks havoc with computers as their weapon. Among people who write code, though, the term hack refers to a "quick-and-dirty" solution to a problem, or a clever way to get something done. And the term hacker is taken very much as a compliment, referring to someone as being creative and having the technical chops to get things done. The Hacks series is an attempt to reclaim the word, document the good ways people are hacking, and pass the hacker ethic of creative participation on to the uninitiated. Seeing how others approach systems and problems is often the quickest way to learn about a new technology.
As any experienced merchant will tell you, there are plenty of tasks involved in accepting payments on the Internet, and anything that can be done to make those tasks easier, faster, or more effective will improve your profits and give you more time to grow your business. But despite the title PayPal Hacks, this book is also not about "hacking into a system" or anything so nefarious?quite the contrary. In fact, you'll find in this book a very real emphasis on trading responsibly and ethically, as well as extensive tools and tips for protecting yourself as both a buyer and a seller.
PayPal, on the surface, seems like a simple system allowing you to send and receive payments. But there's a whole lot more under the hood; there are many tips and tricks you can use to save time and improve sales with PayPal. The hacks in this book address the technological and diplomatic challenges faced by all PayPal members, and are written from the perspectives of both PayPal insiders and experienced solution providers. Essentially, you'll find the tools to help you buy and sell smarter and safer, make more money, and have fun doing it.