Geek Chic: Gifts for Your Favorite Egghead

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Did you know that, according to Merriam Webster, one of the original definitions of geek refers to “a carnival performer often billed as a wild man whose act usually includes biting the head off a live chicken or snake?” Pretty gross, right? Another definition from that venerable word source describes a geek as “an enthusiast or expert especially in a technological field or activity, i.e. computer geek”. And according to, one definition of geek is “a computer expert or enthusiast (a term of pride as self-reference, but often considered offensive when used by outsiders.)”

Most of us have the image of the stereotypical geek burned in our consciousness, partially due to pop culture icons Poindexter of the Revenge of the Nerds franchise and Family Matters' Steve Urkel: a bumbling, socially awkward individual who can be found more often playing computer games (or possibly developing one) than hanging out at the latest bar.

Nowadays, being a geek is more a source of pride than derision. Geeks even have their own Nerd Pride holiday, celebrated in Spain every May 25th since 2006. If that's not enough proof of "geek appeal", just remember some of today's most famous masterminds, such as Mr. Microsoft himself, Bill Gates; Michael Dell, the founder of Dell, Inc.; and Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple and co-founder of Pixar Animation Studios. Like it or not, geeks are hot!

Chances are you know someone who'd rather pontificate on the virtues of the Pythagorean theorem than discuss the latest misadventures of Paris Hilton. So how do you buy a gift for a geek ? One thing is certain: most geeks are apt to be familiar with the latest gadgets and gizmos, so you'll have to search hard and long to find a gift for your brainiac. If you need help, check out this Prediction Flowchart for Geek Gifts for a hilarious take on shopping with a geek's appetite for electronic thingamajigs in mind.

If all else fails, consider our suggestions for some of the hottest books, gadgets, and fashion “geek-cessories” that are certain to make your shopping for a geeky gift a breeze!

[edit] Tips for Buying Gifts for Geeks

  1. There are different types of geeks and nerds. So know their interests. Remember that just because they are a computer geek doesn't mean they don't have other hobbies or interests. Lots of geeks are also sports fans who love having the latest high-tech gadgets that keep them informed.
  2. Be careful when buying electronics. You do not want to buy a gift that is not compatible with their computer or other electronics.
  3. Be careful when buying books. A true bookworm may already own the book. You can always play it safe by buying a gift card to their favorite book store.

[edit] Gift Ideas for Geeks and Nerds

GeekFashion.jpg Buying Geek Fashion

Help your favorite geek express himself with's collection of T-shirts intended to convey his tenderness for anything techie! With phrases like “Unix is user friendly, it's just selective about who its friends are” and “Geekier Than Thou,” any Einstein would be proud to show where his heart lies! brings us a funky, innovative necklace made from plain old glass fuses. Their Fuze Necklace adds a little sophistication and “geek sensibility” to any fashion statement.

Who would've ever thought duct tape, that seemingly uninspiring, silver-gray sticky stuff could be crafted into an oddball yet snazzy fashion accessory? Apparently thought it was long overdue! With their unique Ducti Duct Tape Purse, fashion meets function in a handbag that will make your favorite geeky chick the hit at the next gaming convention! also offers some self-described “nerdy bling” for the men with their quirky Gold Microprocessor Necklace. Even the Einstein who typically eschews jewelry won't be able to resist this piece of hardware that boldly but elegantly expresses his remarkable style.

Gadgets.jpg Buying Geeky Gadgets

Do you know an on-the-go geek who's absolutely in love with the iPod and all of its accessories? Try surprising him or her with Waterproof iPod Speakers from RushGideon. Portable iPod speakers let your favorite geek or geekette enjoy some hot stereo sound anywhere they go!

Most of us have several passwords that we use to access our email accounts, conduct online banking or credit card transactions, etc. You probably have more than you care to (or are able to) remember, right? Well, the average geek probably has ten times more passwords than you do! Help your super-genius keep all his secret codes on lockdown with the Roboform2Go, a USB device that not only keeps passwords secure but logs the user in automatically. To top it off, it generates passwords that hackers can't guess. (While you're at it, pick one up for yourself, too!)

Finally! An MP3 player, scientific calculator, and pocket dictionary rolled into one. Just what we've all been waiting for! Well, maybe you haven't, but no doubt this will be a godsend to your treasured geek. The Coby PMP-3522 20GB Portable Media Player is perfect for the wordsmith who can't live without his tunes.

Smartkid.jpg For the whiz kids in your life...

No self-respecting spy ever got far without mastering the art of eavesdropping; why should your little secret agent be any different? The Spy Ear Listening Device takes kiddie-sleuthing to new levels with its ability to amplify conversations from all the way across the room. This gadget is sure to be a hit with your favorite snoop, so be careful what you say!

Hasbro's CHATNOW Flip Communicators look like cell phones but act like walkie-talkies! The outstanding difference between this contempo device and the childhood mainstay that you may remember is its ability to send and personalize text messages to friends up to two miles away!

Nothing pleases a brainy youngster more than curling up with a great book. Satisfy their intellectual urges with entertaining yet perceptive books that celebrate young geekdom, such as Julie Anne Peters' How Do You Spell Geek? , Alyson Noel's Art Geeks and Prom Queens, and Neil Feineman's Chic: The Ultimate Guide to Geek Culture . Your young scholar will appreciate these books that loudly proclaim the benefits of being a geek without being preachy.

Bookworm.jpg Brain Food for the Adult Bookworm

Delight the genius in your life with Nitrozac and Snaggy's collection of their quirky and irreverent online comic series, The Best of the Joy of Tech (don't worry if you don't know who Nitrozac and Snaggy are; your tech-savvy friend will). These guys lampoon everything from corporate giants to geek culture. A must read for the serious (and not so serious) techie!

Computer geeks will be in for a gratifying experience with The Joy of Linux: A Gourmet Guide to Open Source by Michael Hall and Brian Proffitt. The Joy of Linux “offers secret facts and tips for Linux enthusiasts,” and “a conversational and celebratory look at the history and evolution of Linux, as well as its current cultures, communities, and controversies,” according to

And just in case you had a sneaking suspicion about your own proclivities toward the nerdier side of life, Tim Collins offers you a guide to self-discovery with his enlightening tome Are You a Geek?: 1,000 Ways to Find Out. Answer a series of thought-provoking and often silly questions to ascertain your status in the geek universe.

There you have it, folks. This list should get you started and point you in the right direction. You'll be a “geek gift guru” in no time!

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