While staring at my screen as I put together my next post in my noggin, I idly started typing things into Google. Being a technology geek, I tend to use search strings to see what people like me are looking for. I typed “How to be a Geek” into the search box and was actually stunned at the results. The Internet has it completely wrong – and so do you. The definition of the word itself just isn’t right y’all. Being a geek has nothing to do with carnival performers, computer gurus or peculiar people.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: a geek is someone who is passionate about something. There are computer geeks, sure. There are also gardening geeks, motorcycle geeks and word puzzle geeks. Everyone has a passion of some type. I don’t honestly care if you love playing the drums, writing poetry, playing a sport or simply sitting next to the ocean while staring into space. Those things which are you most involved with and excited about are what make you a geek.
I hate seeing the geek label being used in a derogatory manner more than I explain. Those who don’t know any better assume that a geek is someone who hides behind a computer screen, has no social skills and is unkempt. Sure, there are people like that out there somewhere. There are also those of us who have vibrant lives outside of our online world, who are obsessively clean AND who know how to converse in social settings.
Being a geek of any type is something to be proud of. Proclaiming yourself as one means simply that you truly care about whatever it is you’re doing. You love it… you eat, sleep and breathe it. You LIVE it. Can anyone explain to me how in the hell embracing our passions is a bad thing?
A geek cannot be stuffed into one tidy little description. When I polled Twitter to find out how all of you define this term, one answer stood head and shoulders above the rest. Kristijan said that “A geek is someone who would never succeed in defining “geek” in 140 characters or less.” Right on!
What type of geek are you?
Since 1949, LEGO has been giving collectors and enthusiasts the opportunity to design and create virtually anything they can imagine. This tradition continues with the LEGO Minifigures: Series 3. 16 unique minifigures make up this edition, expanding on the collection the first two series started. Their inspiration comes from movies, sports, history, and even regular everyday life.
The tennis player carries her racket with a confident smirk. She’s donned in a white tennis outfit with blue trim.
The Hula Dancer brings life to any party with her grass skirt and maracas.
The Space Alien has a big green head with bulging black eyes. His purple space suit matches the beam coming out of his ray gun. Rumor has it he wants to take over the world, but just hasn’t found the time to, yet.
The Samurai wields a massive katana, wears an impressive set of armor, and looks absolutely serious all the time. Under the armor, he’s wearing a maroon kimono.
The Sumo Wrestler is a real award winner. No, really, he has a trophy with him so all will know how impressive his skills in the ring really are. Even though this immovable object has a permanent frown, he is always happy to stop and sign autographs.
The Rapper comes complete with a giant boom box, microphone, and a matching cap. While he may not be the next Kevin Federline, he certainly looks the part.
The fisherman has caught a big fish, and it is nearly as long as impressive as his beard. He appears to be a jolly old fella with tons of stories to tell.
The Tribal Chief comes complete with a giant ceremonial headdress and a deadly looking spear.
The Snowboarder has her own snowboard and helmet, which matches a pretty fancy looking snowsuit.
The Elf, LEGOlas, is a master archer with arrows as pointy as their ears. Should an enemy get too close, though, his shield is on hand to protect him from danger.
The Race car Driver has a winning smile, and a protective helmet that doesn’t quite fit over his hair.
The Pilot comes with an aviator hat and goggles. He looks warm in his flight jacket.
The Baseball Player is in uniform and ready to play with bat in hand. The only question is, “Who are the Clutchers?”
The Mummy is all wrapped up in being one scary dude. His white wrappings appear to be covering up a terrible skin condition.
The Space Villain resembles a cross between a Borg and a pirate captain. His peg leg and phaser complete a package of pure evil that may rival even the fiercest of the Sith.
This brings us to the final LEGO Minifigure, Gorilla Suit Guy. He may be sweating it out inside a giant monkey costume, but that doesn’t mean he can’t appreciate a good banana.
You can vote for my friend, Vanae (who you might remember from an earlier video interview). She needs your help, and I figured… well, you could give it in exchange for a bit of geek-centric dating advice. Don’t let us down, guys! She is in the running for the “Good Mood Gig” from Sam-e Complete, writing in their blog.
Vanae feels that you are a geek because you have great qualities that are hard to find in other people. Own your geekiness! Don’t try to hide it – even from members of the opposite sex. She reminds you to feel good about yourself from the inside out, including taking care to be healthy and practicing good hygiene habits. Be comfortable with yourself so that you exude good energy.
Speak up, guys. You’re invisible until you do, and she won’t know you exist. You know those boundaries that you have, where you are completely unsure of what to do? Stop worrying so much! Don’t let yourself be so socially active. Let go of your boundaries and don’t be afraid to compliment or flirt with that cutie you have your eye on.
Be true to who you are. We’re humans who always evolve and want social connections. Present the best you by carrying on what is authentic. Don’t adopt a persona or techniques that are something other than what and who you are.
Make friends with girls, guys. If you have female friends, you will start to become more comfortable with women in general. Don’t look at every female as a potential date. Hang out with them in a platonic way. Not only will you build confidence, you will also start to learn and understand more about women in general.
What dating tips do you have for those of us who call ourselves geeks?
Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a fantastic movie. Johnny Depp is such a phenomenal actor, no matter what the part calls for. He is funny. He is diabolical. He is a pure genius.
However, it’s not only Depp who can figure out who (or what?!) his friends are. At the end of the day, all I need is my iPhone, my iPod touch and my iPad. With these by my side, I shall never be alone!
Geeks are everywhere. We tend to hold some of the coolest jobs on the planet. Our group has some of the most amazing (and personable!) people as core members. The gang is widely accepted socially these days – right? Sadly, this isn’t always the case. Why is it that even in the days of phenomenal technological advances we still sometimes have to hide who we are? Why are geeks ostracized in any capacity?
One teen on Lockergnome reports that his mom told him to not tell people he is a geek. Say what?! He explains further by saying: “When I call myself a geek in front of people, they don’t seem to understand what I mean. Some people misinterpret it for being the Hollywood stereotyped ‘I love school, reading books, doing homework and physically weak nerd.'”
I cannot believe that people feel as though being a geek is a bad thing. Hell, a geek isn’t necessarily even someone who is a computer lover. A geek is anyone who is passionate about something, whether that be technology, water polo or art class.
What are your thoughts? Do you feel there are still negative connotations in conjunction with the word geek?
- Should Sony have won their jailbreaking case?
- People are more important than gadgets.
- Organized web monsters are finding jobs quite easily these days.
- Is it possible to add a WiFi adapter to a D-Link router?
- How do you handle it when your own parents tell you not to call yourself a geek?
- Save yourself a wad of dough by planting your seeds for next year in a toilet paper roll.
- Have you ever done an acid3 test?
- Have you ever ghosted a portable drive to install on a fresh machine?
- What is the best gadget you have ever used?
- Some people will be spending their long weekend testing software.
- Who do you think is the most “important” person in computer history?
- What types of problems would cause a newer computer to shut itself off at random times?
- I don’t know why everybody’s getting upset at @KevinRose over Digg changes. He’s AWESOME – always has been, always will be.
- Do you have an addiction to a specific type of food?
- Wake up and fix your support, Microsoft!
- Toshiba is recalling overheating laptop machines, saying that the AC adapter could melt.
- What would cause a scanner to refuse to install?
- What has been your favorite operating system of all time?
- How do you evaluate social media helpers?
- What is the one piece of software you recommend to others most often?
- I refer to annoying people who check in EVERYWHERE as “Foursquare Badgers.”
- How much space do you REALLY need on that portable device?
- Do you need a beginner’s guide to wireless network administration?
- Which project management tools can you not live without?
- When I almost walk into someone while I’m staring at my device’s screen, I quickly have to do the “iPad Shuffle.”
- How can you easily and quickly remove double entries in iTunes?
- IKEA is working to build an (almost) completely Green store.
- Fat cells are not just dormant storage facilities for calories.
- StreamArmor is a free tool for discovering hidden alternate data streams (ADS) as well as cleaning them completely from the system.
- Which mobile media strategies actually work?
- Can all camcorders be used as webcams?
- What types of things do you collect?
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On June 3rd, I had an amazing time at the Chic Meets Geek event down in San Francisco. Founder and hostess Carol Tran put together an amazing event, bringing the beautiful people together with those of us who are Geeks.
Chic Meets Geek is a conference with a social atmosphere designed to connect the cultural chic and intellectual geeks beyond a surface level. A panel of both geek and chic speakers shared their inspirational backgrounds in order to bridge these two seemingly incongruous groups. Founder Carol Tran believes the pairing of these two cultures through meshing a red carpet gala and a tech conference into one event will challenge guests to reach beyond their comfort zone and open their minds.
The Vivanista blog detailed the festivities as: “Chic Meets Geek combines aspects of a technology conference, a red carpet gala, and a nonprofit fundraiser. The venue, the Automattic Lounge at Pier 38, is well-known by geeks as the headquarters of Automattic, the parent company of WordPress, a user-friendly blogging platform. Geek Meets Chic has been described as a “user experience” where one may network with people outside their normal circles.”
There were more than 400 people in attendance at Chic Meets Geek, including actor Steve Wharton. In my opinion, this was an event done right. I’m very happy to have been a part of it.
Most tech conferences would charge you thousands of dollars for the privilege of being inspired. Gnomedex, however, does not! It delivers more bang for your buck, as it has been for the past ten years. This year, the 10th Gnomedex will be happening from August 19 – 21 in Seattle. Will you be joining us?
We don’t know what is going to happen with the Gnomedex brand going forward. We have a lot of ideas, though. I’ve been talking with potential partners, and am looking for potential partners who may want to help evolve the idea of Gnomedex in years to come… not just in Seattle, but possibly elsewhere, as well.
Gnomedex is a confluence of influence – a tapestry of Human Circuitry. We’re surrounded by technology, but it’s becoming increasingly pervasive. We’re surrounded by stories and discussions that usually get glossed over online. Gnomedex is an experience. That is what past attendees will tell you.
We attract hard-core Geeks who love technology and want to meet influencers. We attract influencers themselves. Heck, we even attract the people who don’t realize they’re influencers. We find them before they are influencers of anything – or anyone.
We Geek out over a few days’ time and enjoy ourselves. We relax and open our minds to new experiences, stories and connections.
One of our partners for the past several years has been Eventbrite. They handle registration for us, and have been a boatload of help during past events. This year, they are offering to help drive more traffic towards the conference, in honor of our tenth anniversary. They asked me a series of questions to help them get a better feel for what we do, and I decided to answer them in a video.
- What IS Gnomedex? – It’s typically a “tech conference,” but really it’s so much more than that. It’s an opportunity for you to explore a side of yourself you may not otherwise have a chance to. You realize you identify with this Geek spirit. Imagine being around more than 300 other people, and being who you really are. You’ll talk about issues that are on the forefront of our industry. We push the envelope, and even predict trends. Back in 2001, we talked of blogs and RSS – long before anyone knew what they were. It boils down to the experiences people have and the energies they take with them back to wherever they came from.
- How has Gnomedex evolved in the past ten years? – The ethos was still the same in the beginning: treat everyone like a VIP, connect with one another and offer a single-track event. It has evolved to better facilitate the communication online. We’re live streaming the entire conference. We have a much better venue than in past years. You get an awful lot of awesome things for the low cost of $300.00 that we are charging this year. For a 2 1/2 day conference packed full of opportunities, that’s not a lot of money folks.
- What sets Gnomedex apart from other events? – People come to Gnomedex because they truly WANT to be there. They aren’t made to go. With a lot of industry events, people are sent by their bosses and managers. They feel that they “have” to have a presence there. With our conference, we just don’t get that crowd. Everyone attends because they truly want to experience what it is we’re doing.
- How do you think the structure of the event serves your goals? That’s something organizers often struggle with. – I’ve seen organizers have seventeen different tracks with thousands of people pouring in. I’m not down with that. I’d rather make 300 people happy than 3000 miserable. In the past, we’ve had people equate what we do with very large conferences and brands, saying that we have done the same thing for a fraction of the cost. I value those connections. I AM about those connections, so that is what I value most. I keep it as small and manageable as I can. That’s centric to community, which is the core component of everything I do.
- How did you choose and secure the venue? How will the space be set up? – I’m in the process of negotiating the venue for this year. We’ve used it for the past few years. I have no desire to change things, but we’re working out the cost this year. Bell Harbor is an amazing place, and very comfortable. It’s beautiful there, the location is fantastic and everyone leaves happy. They provide awesome food, snacks and drinks all day long. The seating is comfy. There is plenty of room at the tables. Each person has power strips right at their seat and kick-ass Wi-Fi to use.
- What is your approach to using social media for the event – before, during and after? – I’ve been using various social media outlets for Gnomedex pretty much since the beginning. Our attendees own and create the event. All we do is set the stage. I encourage people to record things, tweet about things and blog about their experiences. It’s always worked out well. Before the event, our volunteers help spread the word as much as anyone. They are excited to be a part of organizing the event and they show it in their conversations online.
I’d love to do other types of events around the Gnomedex brand. It would be amazing to do one for kids and teens, with speakers and presentations geared specifically towards them. This may very well be the last Gnomedex as you know it now – it depends on the partners we get in the future, and the direction they want to take.
If you want a free event, attend a free event. If you want to be treated like cattle, don’t bother to attend Gnomedex. EVERYONE at Gnomedex is treated like a VIP, whether they are a volunteer, an attendee or a presenter.
We have some amazing speakers and experiences lined up already this year. I promise… you will have an amazing time if you join us this year.
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Are you a geek living / working in the San Francisco Bay area? Even if you’re not there, perhaps you know someone who is? Be sure to let them know of the opportunity to be sponsored to attend this geeky chic’y evening event. You’ll rub shoulders with people you’d otherwise likely never meet in real life!
Chic Meets Geek is a gathering of two different groups in one room to inspire, share, and connect through a panel of geek and chic influential leaders to talk about their inspirational background. A nonprofit beneficiary is highlighted at every event and themed around the speaker panelists’ expertise to bridge the gap. The night is a user experience. The event presents distinct elements found at a red carpet gala and tech conference in one room. The event challenges the attendees with thought-provoking ideas and situations, in order to inspire good.
If you meet the requirements and live in the San Fran area, why not apply for a free event pass? I’ll be sending ten of you to this event by paying for the ticket. Any other expenses are up to you to cover.
The speakers for the event this year are a pretty cool mix of both chic people and geek people. You’ll find a fashion designer from Project Runway, a dancer from MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew, a San Francisco Philanthropist, and the CEO of Serena and Lily.
During the evening’s event, you’ll listen to the speaker presentations, mingle with them and other attendees, participate (if you choose) in a silent auction and attend a runway fashion show. The event runs only five hours… so it won’t tie up an entire day (or more!).
Again, I can only give away ten passes to this event. You need to submit your request by Wednesday at 1p.m. PST.
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It’s time to collect your very own Chris Pirillo Action Figure! I didn’t come up with the idea, mind you – the company that makes ’em approached me a few months ago with an offer.
It’s $50 for a large Pirillo head and/or $25 for a small Pirillo head – or you can buy the heads with action figure bodies and accessories.
- Military Brown – This set includes the action figure dressed in Military Brown pants, a belt/holster, a brown vest, black boots and a gun. Me with a gun is a scary thought, I know.
- Casual – This is my personal favorite, since it’s how I dress every day. This version of action figure me is sporting jeans and a t-shirt, shoes, a belt and sunglasses. Gotta protect my eyes from that evil yellow ball, you know.
- Indiana Jones – Go ahead, admit it. You’ve always wished you could be Indy! This Pirillo is outfitted with brown pants, shirt and shoes. I have a whip-cracking arm (complete with whip) and a tiny gun in a little holster.
- Business Suit – The more professional mini-me is decked out from head-to-toe in a business suit, belt, shoes and power tie.
As I said before, though: you can also choose to buy just the figure head alone, then place it atop any action figure you already own. Go on… turn me into Hulk Hogan, G.I. Joe, or Wonder Woman. (Please – let’s not. I was only kidding about the Wonder Woman idea)
I have a feeling you’re going to want to collect them all. If you take a look at my live stream, you’ll see they have a place of honor on my desk – right in front of the camera. I think everyone likes looking at these even more than they like seeing my real face on the screen.
Everyone has a little action figure inside of them. Let your inner hero shine through by checking out everything you can do on Thats My Face.