Linked by Kevin Russo on Tue 7th Dec 2004 06:19 UTC
Geek stuff, sci-fi... Geek is defined by Dictionary.com as 'A person who is single-minded or accomplished in a scientific or technical pursuit'. Many of us either acknowledge ourselves as computer geeks or are labeled by Friends, Family, and/or Colleagues as the such. This is not a condescending statement and should not be taken in a negative connotative way. It is in fact an admiration of our technical skills and abilities.
Permalink for comment
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Re:
by Vesselin Peev on Tue 7th Dec 2004 07:00 UTC

That's a very good article. I'm a programmer and computer-user for more than 20 years, and I have found many times the attitude of knowledgeable "geeks" around me disgusting. Most of us have bloated egos, that's a fact. Honestly, I have helped a lot people with computer problems, but I've been leery of presenting myself as a geek, because I can see this presenting myself as superior -- even in a field that the other person does not know at all, so it is natural that I am superior to him/her in this case -- can impede their understanding and communication, and can impede my communication with them.
I think the bubble of being a geek is going to gradually burst, because as computers become more pervasive, more and more people will realise that there is nothing so unearthly and special about computer skills that isn't part of, albeit in a different form, engineering, medicine, psychology, architecture, music, painting & other sciences and
arts.
When was the last time we tried to produce a painting a la Leonardo da Vinci and actually succeeded doing it with our geeky knowledge alone? When was the last time computer knowledge alone made us produce a book about history? Or to perform brain or heart surgery? Isn't it humbling to even think about performing those with computer science alone?

Granted, some jobs have a skill ceiling (cleaning the street, for example, doesn't need a PhD-level of knowledge but more than a bit of knowledge still helps there, too), but there are people at the level of the knowledge of so-called geeks in many other professions, and who themselves have to humble up -- I've seen too many over-proud doctors and lawyers, for example.
By deliberately presenting ourselves superior we are limiting our knowledge for sure, because as I said we fail to communicate with other people, and alienate them as well. By alienating them, we cannot see properly into their field of work and cannot learn whatever otherwise we could have learned from dealing and working with them in an open manner. By not learning "those other irrelevant and inferior things", which have nothing to do with Tux the Penguin or Bill Gates, we eventually limit our computer knowledge, because it is not important to know computers per se, it is important to be able to apply them in different fields, which means we need to strive for understanding of the work other professionals are competent at.