inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #76 of 113: Mikki Halpin (filmmag) Sat 19 Aug 00 06:40
    

Hi Im back.  gonna kind of respond generally to some threads.



I purposely didnt define "geek" in the book, because I think it's
unanswerable and shifting. there are geek qualities and behaviors and
characteristics but you cant pin it down. Bruce Sterling has run across this
sort of problem with his Dead Media project, where people keep wanting him
to define a finite set of  "media."  And, of course, one of the problems
with the desire for a hard definition is that terms like "true geek" and
"wannabe geek" come soon after, and I dont think that's very productive.
(It's like who is a sell out? when it comes to art, for me).

There is this phenomenon of the "film geek" or "train geek" but I dont like
that. it seems like the word "enthusiast" or "obsessive:" could work just as
well. I do think geekiness is specifically tied to the so-called harder
sciences, and to computational devices and theories, etc.  That's why the
timeline goes back to  the inventor of the dust abacus.

I did talk a little about the geek tendency to take things apart and to
tinker, but, I agree, not a lot.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #77 of 113: Mikki Halpin (filmmag) Sat 19 Aug 00 06:47
    

re geek vs. nerd

Im not really sure! I have a very arbitrary distinction that I use, but it's
open to debate. I tend to sort it out as geeks being definitely concted to
technology and science, as above, whereas a nerd isnt, necessarily. I think
of nerd as being a more generic term, in that I cant thinkof any specific
nerd qualities or characteristics, and I can when it comes to geeks.

(off topic a bit--I think some of the confusion between the terms comes from
the phenomenon of "scarred childhood chic" where people an get very
competitive about who had a worse exerience in high school. this mentality
made our society very receptive to geek chic.)
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #78 of 113: Steven Solomon (ssol) Sat 19 Aug 00 09:29
    
Re;74... Early in his career, it was theorized that Gates had
Aspergers, given some of the possible symptoms he displayed. In the
past few years, he seems to have gotten some of the body rocking, eye
ticks and lack of eye contact with others under control, at least in
public.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #79 of 113: RUSirius (rusirius) Sat 19 Aug 00 10:53
    

i haven't seen it, but how does "The Geek Handbook" differ from "The
Cyerpunk Handbook" aside from being better, of course....
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #80 of 113: Captain Aharhar (gjk) Sat 19 Aug 00 20:17
    

Speaking of documentation, what warranties are available for geeks?   Like,
are there extended serivice plans available?  And how quickly does the
current model geek become obsolete?  One year?  Two years?  Longer?
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #81 of 113: blather storm (lolly) Sat 19 Aug 00 20:22
    
Comeon, you know a geek would never buy an extended service plan.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #82 of 113: snarly (obizuth) Sun 20 Aug 00 17:48
    
i proprietarily and lovingly urge mikki to post 3.2.4, Eating Out With
Your Geek, and some of the timeline of great moments in geekdom, esp
gallileo, john napier and ben franklin, because at this juncture i am
in need of a giggle. i believe she mentioned something about NOT BEING IN
POSSSESSION OF A COPY OF THE BOOK. that's, like, really geeky.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #83 of 113: Scott Packard (spackard) Sun 20 Aug 00 21:01
    
Am I a geek when fixing something that's broken for a couple
of friends and they remark, "Steve.  Scott's just like McGyver!",
and I say "who?"  So then I had to watch a show called McGyver
to see what they were talking about.  And I thought McGyver was
a little clueless on the things he was doing.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #84 of 113: Benjamin Brewer (bbrewer) Sun 20 Aug 00 21:25
    
Can YOU make a bomb out of a gluestick, a match, and some fishing
line? DIDN'T THINK SO.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #85 of 113: Angus MacDonald (angus) Mon 21 Aug 00 14:13
    
        I still think the National Lampoon poster "Are You a Nurd?"
established the correct spelling in the mid-seventies and everybody else
is wrong.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #86 of 113: Mikki Halpin (filmmag) Mon 21 Aug 00 14:13
    

macgyver may not have known if each project was gonna work, but he knew what
he was doing in terms of understanding the UNDERLYING principles of each
tinkerage.

I luv him.

y.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #87 of 113: Mikki Halpin (filmmag) Mon 21 Aug 00 14:21
    

for marjorie (she helped me write a lot of these btw)

1614 CE
Scotsman John Napier discovers logarithms. Napier also attempted to build a
"death ray" using mirrors, sunlight, and various lenses. Both his interests
live on, one as a mathematical principle, the other a reliable option for
villains in Bond movies.

1633 CE
The astronomer, mathematician, and physicist Galileo Galilei is tried by the
Catholic Inquisition for suppoting the Copernican theory that the earth
revolves around the sun. While Galileo did renounce his beliefs under
duress, his is an extreme object lesson of the persecution many geeks suffer
at the hands of the staus quo. Geeks rejoiced when the Vatican officially
struck down its own prohibition in 1992 and exonerated Galileo. (Geek
attitudes toward religion vary, but vindication is always nice.)

1752 CE
benjamin Franklin ties a key to a kite and flies it during a storm to prove
that lightning is electricity. Franklin has cred for geek extremism and
inventiveness, but his policy of "a penny saved is a penny earned" would
not have won him many defense contracts.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #88 of 113: Emily J. Gertz (emilyg) Mon 21 Aug 00 14:23
    


I actually do know someone who can make incendiary devices out of the most
unlikely ingredients: my grad school cohort the Army Reserve Lieutenant.
She went on a training last year with members of the medical unit she
commands.  They had to figure out how to make defensive devices out of stuff
they might happen to have were they unexpectedly cut off from supply lines
during battle.  Her stories were both hysterical and somewhat frightening!

[note: being a medical unit, their goal was not to hurt people, of coursem
but to set up devices that would make noise if "an enemy crossed the
perimiter" ]

I believe "rail fan" and "trainspotter" are synonymous, btw.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #89 of 113: Scott Packard (spackard) Mon 21 Aug 00 14:51
    
There's too much sulfur in match powder to do anything practical.
(Practical in a bomb sense.)
In an unrelated matter, most TV car explosions are enhanced with
loads of kerosene (makes for good, black smoke and yellow flame).

Also, jet fuel is kerosene, with cold-weather additives.

- Scott
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #90 of 113: Mikki Halpin (filmmag) Mon 21 Aug 00 17:03
    
and re: asperger syndrome

I am researching. very interesting
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #91 of 113: Brian Slesinsky (bslesins) Mon 21 Aug 00 17:27
    
It looks to me like a pretty rare disease and not really related to
computer geeks at all.  One site I saw said that some children with
Asperger's don't understand metaphors and need to memorize facial
expressions.  Some of us geeks may be anti-social but not to that
extent.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #92 of 113: snarly (obizuth) Mon 21 Aug 00 17:28
    
i only helped you with tesla! none of those!
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #93 of 113: snarly (obizuth) Mon 21 Aug 00 17:34
    
there was a flurry of articles about a year ago about a theory that autism
is actually a continuum, that some people who are just plain geeky may
have a mild form of autism. maybe some people theorize that asberger's is
also in the continuum? dunno. 

this stuff really is interesting. i have noticed that geeks often do have
a harder time reading facial expressions and body language than
non-geeks. yesterday i was on a planetarium tour with a really nice geek
and he couldn't really tell that people were getting antsy as he talked at
great length, because he himself was so passionate about
astrophysics. (not to be disparaging at ALL, i find geek enthusiasms
endearing. tho as a non-geek wedded to a geek, i have had occasion to 
perfect the  alert interested expression while my brain goes to
barbados.)

ergo: 

"ACTUALLY, PIGS DON'T SWEAT. HERE, I HAVE PREPARED A SIMPLE POWER-POINT
PRESENTATION TO EXPLAIN THE SWINE-COOLING MECHANISM TO YOU." 
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #94 of 113: snarly (obizuth) Tue 22 Aug 00 20:17
    
ATTENTION INKWELL SHOPPERS!

mikki will be on world news now (ABC's overnight news show) on wednesday
nite. not sure what time it airs--i think the show starts at 2am? VCR
people?
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #95 of 113: Delyn Simons (delyn) Wed 23 Aug 00 12:02
    
i missed mikki at her book party at cafe proust in sf. might there
still be autographed copies of your book at my favorite clean, well
lighted place?

i fell for a geek, and am still falling for him. he's adapted to our
geek-hostile world in dress & music (it was a year before i caught him
guiltily watching star trek voyager), but it is the geek parts i adore
most about him (thoughtful, considerate, sensitive, pop tv culture
illiterate). 

i may never comprehend why he hasn't read a book *not* about java
programming in the last 6 years. or why he'd rather look up the address
of the restaurant we are going to on his internet-enabled palm pilot
rather than just opening up the sf weekly. i guess geeky became
endearing somewhere along the line.

Question for Mikki or others: In "Geek Love" they talk about the
dictionary definition,
carnival-performer-wild-man-whose-act-usually-includes-biting-the-head-off-a-l
ive-chicken-or-snake
type of geek. When did the term geek evolve from wild circus performer
into mild mannered technical tinkerer?
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #96 of 113: snarly (obizuth) Thu 24 Aug 00 09:07
    
mikki will be on Pure Oxygen on the oxygen network a week from today. not
sure yet what time, but sometime between 12-2pm eastern time (9-11am on
the other coast). 
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #97 of 113: Linda Castellani (castle) Thu 24 Aug 00 20:05
    

Is that online, or...?  Please post all the particulars when you find them
out so we can all tune it.
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #98 of 113: Linda Castellani (castle) Thu 24 Aug 00 20:05
    

From alevin@vision.net.au Thu Aug 24 20:02:14 2000
Date: Fri, 25 Aug 2000 10:55:47 +1000
From: Andrew Levin <alevin@vision.net.au>
To: inkwell-hosts@well.com
Subject: nikki haplin/the geek handbook


what a borderland.  "geek" is really very functioning aspergers syndrome or
borderline autistic phenotype.... children from these parents are at a
much higher risk of autism.

this risk can be reduced, particlularly some vaccines appear to be able to 
tip the balance
inot autism, particularly the mmr. but vaccines should not be given too young
or when a child is ill.

stacked or multiple vaccines are a danger area.

anyway

some links  autism/aspergers syndrome

http://www.angelfire.com/al/osip7315/
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #99 of 113: Emily J. Gertz (emilyg) Fri 25 Aug 00 07:49
    



The more I think about this "geek parent" syndrome, the more I think it fits
my father.  To wit: my brother-in-law and I are discussing (in email!) all
of us kiddies going in on a Palm IIIe for him, for his 75th birthday in
October; today he forwarded me two emails, one for some sort of cheesy eBiz
seminar and the other the latest installment in his "Jewish humor" series.

Oy!
  
inkwell.vue.82 : Mikki Halpin - The Geek Handbook
permalink #100 of 113: Betsy Humphrey (potterygirl) Fri 25 Aug 00 11:47
    
I actually know someone who has diagnosed asperger's syndrome.  It is
mild, and he is very open (online) about it.  He's much more withdrawn
in person, but his intelligence and kindness still comes across.  
  

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