Tag Archives: gifts

Christmas Unboxing Geek Style

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Merry Christmas to all and to all a good haul! This happens to be my favorite holiday, even when I happen to be celebrating it alone. I’m very glad to know you’re here with me (even virtually, in homes of your own).

I bought myself a very cool Boba Fett hoodie this year. I’ve been wanting one forever, so I decided to go ahead and splurge!

I received several really cool gifts from various friends, including some great new LEGO and Star Wars stuff! Thank you to all of you.

I also bought myself a Panasonic DMP-B500 Portable DVD Player. Gosh, how did I ever figure out what it was I really wanted?

YouTube sent a gift to some of the producers, as well. We were asked to go to B&H Photo and Video and choose a few things we knew we could need/use. I chose wisely, knowing I will be broadcasting live soon from CES 2011. I’ll be in the Grand Lobby, and uploading all of the resulting videos to my YouTube account. Thanks so much to the folks at YouTube for these goodies.

ThinkGeek also sent me a nice care package. It was sitting downstairs for at least a week, and I’ve been dying to open it. They sent me the new Bluetooth Keyboard and iPad Case that I’ve had my eyes on for a while now. I also recieved the USB Classic Atari Joystick, the Star Wars Dark Side Coffee, an Otamatone, a Not Here to Make Friends shirt (which I WILL wear in public frequently!), the FML shirt (which again – I WILL wear often!!) and a few other assorted goodies.

What’d you get for Christmas this year?

Gifts for Geeks

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‘Tis better to give than to receive, so they say. It’s true, though. I like to give more than I receive. When it comes to Christmas, I love stocking stuffers the most! How much fun is it to stuff a bunch of things into a big sock and then give it to someone?! They get a whole bunch of presents all at once this way! I’m going to share some stocking stuffer ideas with all of you. All of the following products (other than the LEGO) were sent to me by the manufacturers for review purposes.

  • Mathmos Color Changing Decorative Lighting – This cool little gadget stays lit up, letting you use it for mood lighting – or even a night light! It’s beautiful, and fades in between different colors. It soothes me! Geeks love glowing objects!
  • Griffin Simplifi 3-in-1 – The Simplifi is a great way to save space on your desk. It serves as a dock/charger for your iPod or iPhone. It works as a USB hub. And, best of all.. it’s also a media card reader! It also charges itself via mini-USB!
  • SmartSwipe Card Reader – If you’re worried about security (as you should be these days!), then using the SmartSwipe when ordering something online is a good idea. It’s only available for Windows right now. If you are going to use your credit card online, run it through the SmartSwipe, and let the software transmit your information directly to the website. This eliminates the worry of something like a keylogger capturing your information, because there are no keystrokes entered in conjunction with your card!
  • RetroLink Game Controller – This cool Nintendo NES game controller works on either Mac or Windows systems. Plug it in, and play your favorite games! It works really well, and takes me back to the days of games that I totally miss! I LOVE this!!!
  • IPEVO Point 2 View USB Camera – This is another gadget that I really like. It’s a webcam that works on both OS X and Windows. The cool thing about this particular camera is that it pivots in nearly every direction you can think of! No more messing around for hours on end, attempting to get the perfect angle. This baby makes it easy for you to get it right the first time.
  • SoundClip iPhone Audio Booster – For the iPhone holders in your family who may watch movies or videos on their iPhone, you may want to consider one of these! It plugs in to the bottom of the iPhone, and gives you a much better sound experience. It focuses the sound towards you, instead of away… and amplifies the sound with no batteries needed.
  • MeteorLight LED K9 Ball – This little toy works well for Geeks who like bouncing things with lights… or for the dog in your life! There are little LED lights inside this hard rubber ball, and they’ll change to all the colors in the spectrum when bounced! They’re also waterproof – and float!
  • Superlooper Crossover Adapter – You know that a regular ethernet patch cable will connect your computer to a router, hub or modem. However, you may one day need a crossover cable in order to connect two computers together in order to transfer data. You cannot connect them using a regular old ethernet patch cable. To turn one of these patch cables into a crossover cable, you only need to clip the Superlooper onto one end of the patch cable! Voila! You now have a crossover cable!
  • AC to DC Power Converter – Let’s say you have something powered by DC – say something that would plug in in your car. You likely don’t have a DC plug in your home… you probably only have AC outets! Just plug this nice little adapter in in your home outlets, and you can convert the DC to AC with ease!
  • EvilTron – This diabolical little toy is so much fun – and so annoying to others! It’s easy to hide, and comes pre-loaded with six creepy sounds, including a “gasping last breath”, a door creaking, and even a sinister child’s laugh!
  • LEGO Mini-Figs – I collect them! I love them! I WANT MORE OF THEM!!! If you have any that you aren’t using, I’ll be happy to take them off of your hands!
  • Throwboy Lockergnome Pirillow! – My income percentage of these pillows is 20%… however, I am not keeping any of that! ALL of my proceeds for the sales of these pillows are going to the Seattle Humane Society. These are handmade by Roberto and his team over at Throwboy. They’re fun, they’re cool – and they’re helping out a very worthwhile cause!

I want to hear what YOU think. What do you hope to find stuffed in your stocking this holiday season?

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Are You Ready for the Holidays?

Can you believe that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and Christmas is but a few weeks away? I was aghast yesterday when I walked into a store that was playing Christmas carols… until I realized what the date was. Holy crap where did the year go? I haven’t even started to think about holiday shopping yet, never mind actually DOING any shopping.

After I had my little panic attack, I sat down to check out what was going on around out community. Low and behold… people are talking about the upcoming festivities. They’re figuring out what to cook with their turkeys, and what the hottest new gifts are for this year. Geez I’m way behind, aren’t I?

I was happy as hell to see that the holidays aren’t the only thing that people are chattering about. Thankfully, I found many interesting and informative blogs and threads on a huge variety of topics to keep me busy… and to get my mind back OFF of the holiday season. I’m just not ready quite yet!

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Merry Christmas, and to All a Good Night

It’s been somewhat of a tradition to unwrap our Christmas gifts just as the clock strikes Midnight (the Christmas Eve / Christmas Day cusp). I don’t mind buying presents for family – but I really enjoy finding items for their stocking(s). The “fun” things usually take precedence over practicality, but Ponzi is tricky to buy for. She’s not really into toys, per se – but she requested the game Operation this afternoon. WTF?!

I try to get gifts that I know the other person will appreciate – even if they don’t like ’em. “It’s the thought that counts” will always apply. Still, I sometimes sneak things for myself (as evidenced by the glowing objets I apparently put on order, realizing that Ponzi’s not really into them as much as I am).

I wasn’t given much to go on this year, so many of her presents are what I could find around town. We’re lucky insofar as we have many things we need – like a roof over our head, and food on our plates. Ponzi really only asked for us to pay a bit more towards our mortgage (to lower the payment), and a few other charitable donations. Difficult not to argue with those wishes, but they’re a bit tricky to stick under the tree (or inside a stocking).

I did my best, given the circumstances. Couldn’t really get around town at the last minute, either – what, with the snowstorm that blew through town the other day. I knew what she wanted, or what she might want, or what she wouldn’t be too shocked to receive:

  • Travel Door Alarm
  • iPod Speakers
  • Hubba Bubba Gum Book
  • Engrave-It
  • Annie on DVD
  • Swiss Army Knife
  • $50 iTunes Gift Certificate
  • Sexy Motherpucker Lip Gloss
  • Expo Marker Set
  • Papermate Felt Tip Marker Set
  • Sharpie Pen Set
  • Astronaut Ice Cream – Neapolitan
  • BluAlert Bluetooth Bracelet
  • C.H.I.M.P. Rearview Monitor Mirror – black
  • DaysAgo Refrigerator Timer – Magnetic
  • Dead Fred Pen Holder
  • Glowing UFO Drink Coaster
  • Heart Hand Warmer
  • Inanimate Character Stickers
  • Miracle Berry Fruit Tablets
  • Paper E-mail
  • Paper Voodoo Notepad
  • Phantom Keystroker V2
  • Sneaky Uses for Everyday Things
  • Staple Free Stapler – Black
  • Stickman Action Figure
  • Tear Away Planner Mousepad
  • ThinkGeek Bluetooth Retro Handset
  • USB Aromatherapy Oil Burner – Lavender
  • USB Plasma Ball

What Do Geeks Want for Gifts?

Geek!This is Thomas Ward’s submission for the HP Magic Giveaway. Feel free to leave comments for this article as you see fit – your feedback is certainly welcomed! If you’d like to submit your own how-to, what-is, or top-five list, you can send it to me. Views and opinions of this writer are not necessarily my own:

(1) Aiptek Action High Definition Camcorder

Aiptek joins the HD revolution with their line of high-quality, low-priced digital camcorders. This camcorder records to ultra-portable SD cards, eliminating the need to carry bulky tapes and/or DVDs to operate. On a single 8GB card, you could record up to 5 hours of 1080i high definition content. If video isn’t your thing, then you can also take up to over 32,000 photos! This camcorder comes with an AC adapter, rechargeable battery, USB cable, component cable, A/V cables, case, and remote control. 

(2) Magnavox Blu-ray Disc Player

If you want to take your movie-viewing experience to the next level, then I highly recommend this affordable Blu-ray player. As you may know, Blu-ray is becoming increasingly popular these days, and some of the bigger brands have been selling players in upwards of $400 or more. Magnavox has decided to take an alternate route for the holidays, making Blu-ray more accessible to those on the consumer market. Not only can this machine play your favorite Blu-ray discs, but it can also play regular DVDs, CDs, CD-Rs, and even CD-RWs (a lot more than most players these days).

(3) Vizio 32″ HDTV with Digital Tuner

I can speak from personal experience that Sony has always made excellent equipment, so I don’t hesitate for even a moment to recommend their new Vizio line of high definition televisions. This one features a 32-inch widescreen LCD (which is excellent for those of you who prefer the “cinema” experience). It also features “virtual surround”, which emulates the feeling of surround sound through its two included speakers. If you really want to complete that “cinema” experience you’re looking for, this television can also be mounted to your wall. To top it all off, each Vizio purchased through Wal-Mart comes with a free one-year warranty with in-home service.

(4) Creative Zen 8GB MP3 Player

I always loved the SoundBlaster line of video cards. So, when I heard that Creative was also releasing its own line of digital MP3 players, I knew that I would want to recommend one. This version comes with a 2.5″ digital screen, and can hold up to 2,000 songs. You also get a built-in FM radio, voice recorder, alarm clock function. This handy little gadget can also eliminate the need for all of those bulky external storage devices since the Zen, itself, can also be used for external storage! The best part is that it can be expanded upon, using the included SD card slot.

(5) Halo 3 Covenant Laser Tag Set

Upon first viewing, I expected less of this item – since it is, indeed, a children’s toy. After playing with it, however, I was quite surprised at how true to the video game series these plasma pistols held! The lights and sounds make you feel as though you are Master Chief, leading the Spartans in the fight against the Covenant Armada! If you, or your child, are a fan of laser tag (or the Halo games), then this item definitely belongs on your wish list!

What Geeks Want for Christmas

Geek!This is ZweeK’s submission for the HP Magic Giveaway. Feel free to leave comments for this article as you see fit – your feedback is certainly welcomed! If you’d like to submit your own how-to, what-is, or top-five list, you can send it to me. Views and opinions of this writer are not necessarily my own:

The holiday we’ve all been waiting for is getting closer. As geeks who desire gadgets and gizmos, we all have something we want this Christmas. I have created a list that consists of the top things geeks would die for (or at least want). First, let me tell you guys about who I am – since these things are purely what I like and would buy for myself.

I am a first year college student majoring in computer engineering and writing this article to have a chance in winning the HP Magic Giveaway. I love computers and everything about them, so there is a high chance there are some computer-related items on this list. I first got into computers when I was around 12, watching my mom fix computers for her job as a computer technician. I was fascinated, and that was when my knowledge for technology took off. Now that you know more about me, I would like to know more about my fellow geeks! After reading my list, I would like to see your wish list to see what you want this Christmas! Other than that, enjoy what’s on my top 5 list.


We spend hours and hours in front of the computer, so having a good keyboard is “key” when typing a paper or chatting on geeks.pirillo.com. But a true typist will really appreciate a keyboard that has good tactile feedback and durability. The “daskeyboard” has all that. It is completely mechanical; each press of a key will make a satisfying click from the gold plated switches, no mushy keys here. It has LED back-lit indicators and extra USB ports on the side. This is a great gift for bloggers as well. It comes in 2 versions: Professional having printed keys and Ultimate having 100% blank keys for those who don’t need to look at their keyboard when typing.

Nerf Vulcan

If you’re like me, you still like toys that reveal your inner-child. Now you bring take your first person shooter games into reality. Here is Hasbro’s Nerf Vulcan EBF-25, a battery powered, fully automatic, foam dart gun. This thing is a beast in the office; no one will ever steal your papers and pens again! It fires 3 darts per second and comes with a belt, box magazine, removable tripod and 25 darts.

Flip MinoHD

The Flip has been a really popular gadget this year – even Chris has one! What makes it so great is its simplicity of use. All you need to do to start recording is to turn it on and press the big red button. Video quality is superb for its size, and you don’t even have to carry a USB cable with you to transfer video back to your computer. A USB connector simply “flips” out the top of the Flip. The Mino HD records in 1280 by 720 at 30 frames per second and holds 4GB of built-in memory (60 minutes of video). Comes in black, but you can skin it! This is a great gift for “YoutTubers” or people who don’t like carrying around big camcorders.

Eternalight ELITEMax

This is the ultimate gift for geeks who are attracted to anything that glows (like Chris). This LED flashlight is not like any other flashlight – it’s “smart”. It has multiple modes and output option, like instant momentary overdrive, auto-off timer, dimmable settings, variable rate flasher, variable rate strobe, SOS, attention getting effects, 4-level battery status indicator and more! It uses AA batteries and comes with a limited LIFETIME warranty. How’s that for a flashlight?

KOR One Hydration Vessel

The KOR One looks like an elegant piece of art. It improves upon standard water bottles by having a hinge for the cap, wide mouth for ice cubes and most importantly is made of BPA-free polycarbonate. Thirty dollars may seem a little expensive for a plastic water bottle but in the end you are helping the environment and looking good while doing it.

So, what do you guys want for the holidays? Please post a comment and share your wish list with the geek community!

What’s on Your Holiday Toy Wish List for Gifts?

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The holidays are fast approaching, as we all know. Have you been naughty… or nice? Have you sent Santa your wish list yet? If you haven’t, you may want to check out the hottest must-have items of the season.

Growing up, us boys had awesome holidays. We had many traditions that were sacred to us. I remember going through the catalogs on Thanksgiving Day each year, marking the things that we wanted under the tree on Christmas morning.

What Amazon has done this year is to come up with a very simple and fun way to browse anything and everything you can think of buying (or asking for!) for Christmas. You can search by category or keyword. They have products of all shapes and sizes, for all ages.

No matter what you’re looking for, you’ll get a great idea of what’s new and what’s out there. Heck, I’m already making my list! Are you?


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Father's Day Gift Ideas

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Father’s Day is just a few days away. This year I’m more grateful than ever to have my Dad. He is recuperating nicely after his horrible car accident recently. Have you bought a gift yet for your Dad or even your Grandpa? I put together this list of top gift ideas for Dad, with the help from my chat room. Some of these may require you to pool resources with siblings or other family members. But from my perspective, they’re all worth the cost and should make Dad quite happy come Sunday.

  • Automatic Professional Baseball Electronic Scoreboard – Whew. Try saying that quickly a few times. It’s a little desktop piece of hardware that pulls in all of the latest baseball stats and scores. It doesn’t require a subscription fee, and it works wirelessly! Since my Dad is really in to baseball, this is something he’d love. He wouldn’t have to go flipping channels to find all the latest scores.
  • The Chumby – Yes, this is kind of geeky, but it appeals to non-Geeks, as well. It can pull in the weather, the latest scores, and even news. It’s a very interactive little gadget. It’s well suited to people who don’t want to have to do much work to get all of these with ease.
  • Bose QC3 Noise Reduction Headphones – I’ve had mine for awhile now, and I love them. They weren’t even on my radar until Ponzi got herself a set. I tried them, and couldn’t believe how comfortable they are. I cannot travel without them. Even if I am not listening to something, I turn them on to shut out the random noise and chatter on an airplane. It really works.
  • The Flip – Whether you get the Flip video camera, or something like it… get something that’s easy to use. This little device is just amazing. Just turn it on, push a button, and record. How much easier can it get? The quality is pretty good. In fact, for the price and size of this… the quality is pretty darn good.
  • Tix Clocks – I have sold so many of these, just by running them in my live stream. You don’t even have to get six of them. Even having one would be great! They’re so much fun, and a great conversation starter.

Whether your Dad is a Geek or not, he’d love any of these gifts. The point is, make sure you don’t get him anything so complicated that it sits in the box on the shelf until your mom gets tired of looking at it.

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What do Girls Want as Gifts from Geeks?

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Laura writes: “Some men are great at picking out that special gift to give to their partner. Men that are “geeks” seem to be the worst gift givers. Let me rephrase that… they are bad at giving “girl” gifts. Every girl now and again loves to receive that Techie gift from her guy: like an ipod, iphone or Blu-Ray player. However, there are times when we need to feel special – that our guy cares enough to know about what makes us a girl.”

  • Gift Certificates There is nothing like the gift to shop. I love this gift, but it is so important where the gift certificate comes from. Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales, or Sephora equals good. Walmart, Radio Shack and Game Stop – bad!
  • Flowers Now I know what you’re thinking. But wait… don’t send flowers on her birthday. Send them after you’ve stayed up all night working on your computer and didn’t spend any time with her. Send them because you just started to think about her and wanted to let her know. Gifts are to be given from the heart, not just on Holidays. Does everyone hear that? “…NOT JUST HOLIDAYS”. Stopping on the way home from work and buying roses for $5 out of a van, and saying “here, don’t say I never get you anything” is not the way to go. Splurge and buy her flowers for no particular reason at all, with a little note to say “I’m thinking about you”.
  • Spa packages Awwww… nothing says “I appreciate you” more than a day at the spa being pampered. This gift says, “honey I know you work hard at your job, that you keep our home clean, that the meals you cook are incredible and because you are awesome at everything, I want you to have a day for yourself”. Bad idea – giving her massage oil and saying “we can test this out later (wink, wink)”.
  • Jewelry Ok men, this is important. If you are giving jewelry, try to pay attention to what she wears before buying something expensive that she will never wear. Diamonds are forever, so usually you can’t go too wrong with that. My favorite gifts include anything from Tiffany’s. There is just something about that blue box wrapped in a white ribbon that makes me melt. Bad idea – a key chain from the drugstore that says “I [heart] NY”.
  • Designer handbags Now this is my personal favorite. Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Hermes. OMG, this is one gift she would never expect from her guy, yet if he gives you this you feel special, sophisticated and beautiful. Make sure your handbag comes in a gift box. Most of the time the box is just as important as the bag inside (don’t ask). If you think you would never have any idea what style bag to buy, don’t fret my hairy friends. Most of these upscale stores have very talented sales associates working there – they know the latest trends and what is popular. Bad idea – any handbag that is purchased from a Box Store, or has the words “impostor”, or “replica”.


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Stocking Stuffers

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It’s no secret that I love Christmas. One of my absolute favorite things, though, is to stuff stockings. Stockings were always fun and special when I was growing up, so I went all out to make Ponzi’s special this year, as well.

Here is a list of what I put into her stockings. Yes… there are two! She has two feet, so she may as well have two stockings.

  • KitKat bar
  • Light Blaster (bends and refracts light. Cool to look at xmas lights through)
  • Hazlenut chocolates
  • Service bell (like at counters in stores) to get ahold of me easier
  • Audio power pack for iPhone… one for her purse, and one for her car
  • Pound of Major Dickinson’s Blend coffee from Peet’s, which is her favorite
  • Neon glow 22″ necklace
  • Play money… to help start her on her coin collection. What?! Play money doesn’t count? Oh well, it’s still fun.
  • Harmonica
  • Life Savers Storybook
  • Kazoo
  • A cow keychain that moo’s and has an LED light. This is to symbolize the fact that she wanted to donate to a charity that buys a cow for a needy family, who can then use it for milk… and eventually meat.
  • Oreo cookies
  • Paw rubber stamp
  • Earplugs, so that she won’t have to hear the Ventrilo stream when she doesn’t want to
  • Chocolate coins. Unfortunately, they don’t make plain ones anymore, so these are SpongeBob Squarepants ones
  • Stretch Deck, to help her with stretching more, which is something she plans to do
  • Sour Patch candy

What do you put in your stockings for loved ones, family or children? Do you have special traditional gifts? Leave me a follow-up comment, or email me at [email protected] and let me know!

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