Wednesday, May 13, 2009

True Measure of Geeks - What does it take to be a Geek?

Most of you know that I am HUGE fan of Wil Wheaton, not only because of his early movies and television appearances (hello, people - Wesley Crusher in Star Trek: The Next Generation), but because he is almost the unofficial spokesperson for GEEKS everywhere.  Not one of the NEO-GEEKS who have recently embraced technologies like Twitter and Facebook who now think they are part of the mainstream group of geeks, but a tried-and-true geek from the old days.  Ostracized as children and teens by their peers only to find they were part of a sub-culture of people struggling against the Bolsheviks of teen-hood.

Wil recently partook in a video on being GEEKS that unfortunately took a turn for the worse from conception to development and the end product was less than what Wil expected. 

Anyway, here is the video.

Here is Wil's blog on the video.

Here is my response to Wil's blog:

Good article Wil,

I agree with you on all parts. I am 37, spent most of my childhood and teen life being ostracized for my culture, my personality, my likings. I was not a jock, nor one of the cool kids. At a point in life when being a GEEK or NERD was a counter-culture you were thrust into un-willingly but came to accept and embrace as your own as you found that it worked for you.

To embrace the other side and fit in with the Ken and Barbies of the world meant to conform and become part of the mainstream. This is not the definition of GEEK.

Before we had a real definition and embracing, we were mocked and bullied for our ideals. I, thankfully, stood at 6' 2" during high school and was a very tall GEEK who because of my stature, thankfully, had something going for me in the realm of intimidation which kept my harassment down to mostly verbal and very little physical.

Nonetheless, I seriously doubt the likes of Shaquille O. and most of those other 'stars' within the video had to endure such dissings growing up.

I also like what Wyldfire42 said about (and I paraphrase) not deciding or passing judgment on these individuals because then we create this exclusionary group.

But we should also maintain and protect our identity to a degree. We earned our badges of honor with harassment and humiliation. While the cool kids were invited to drinking parties and after football game events, I spent my Saturday nights, holed up at a friends house, planning adventures and campaigns or rolling characters and developing skills. We traded comic books and talked about super powers and some of us (this author not withstanding) played with G.I. Joe well into the 8th grade (sad, I know).

I think we should embrace those who want to join and become part of our culture and educate them on what it means to truly be a geek. They may or may not find this culture to their liking and the wave of neo-geeks will pass us by and we will be left with our culture again. Then again - maybe this is where everyone gravitates towards. *SIGH*

My two cents.
Bill Teeple
San Jose, CA

My Blog, My Two Cents.


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Monday, May 4, 2009

Blackberry Curve Outsells Apple iPhone - BFD!

In a news article spawned here: many agencies are following up with news stories that the Blackberry Curve has taken over as the top selling phone during the 1st quarter of 2009.  What does this mean?  Should I sell my APPLE STOCK?  Should I go and pick up that Windows Mobile Device and place my 7 iPods, 2 iPhones, Apple TV and my Apple computers on CRAIGSLIST?


It means nothing.  Blackberry has had a huge campaign where it is Buy One - Get One  Free.  My brother took advantage of this offer and bought himself and his wife a blackberry curve - what is it they do for a living, you might inquire?  Auto-Mechanic and Nurse, respectively.  WTF?  That is a lot of fire-power for my sibling and a good chunk of change per month.  But that is what the Cell Phone Industry is doing - marketing towards John Q. Public and their spouse.  

Not only did Blackberry (R.I.M. based) off a viral sell on their devices, but their devices can be found on all the major carriers networks - AT&T, Verizon, Spring, T-Mobile!  How many networks have the Apple iPhone - ONE! AT&T is the sole provider of the Apple iPhone.

So  - let's put this into perspective - Apple, limited to 1 phone offer (no, buy one, get one free), is limited to one provider and has been kicking R.I.M.'s ass until the 1st quarter of 2009.  Not really a great comparison of Apples to Apples (major pun intended).

I have tried all major carriers devices and keep navigating back towards the iPhone - simply the best phone on the market right now.  With iPhone OS 3.0 due in another 2 months... it will surely top the charts with all those 'extra' features that really should have been included in OS 1.0. 

Keep it going, Apple.


Sunday, May 3, 2009

My PS3 Has Died - Long Live the PS3!

After 1 year and 8 months of dependable service, my poor 60 GB PS3 has decided... it doesn't want to read discs anymore.  No DVD's, no PS2 games, no PS3 games and certainly no Blu-Ray discs.  I am SCREWED!

I paid 499.00 for the device back in 2007, from Best Buy, and fortunately for me, I purchased the 2 year extended warranty!  YEAH!  What the hell is the bad news?  Well, for those of you in the know, you understand my apprehension at taking Best Buy up on their offer of PRODUCT REPLACEMENT!!!  Why?  Because the only comprable unit on the market today is the 80 GB version of the PS3 which is a totally CRIPPLED system, in my opinion.

Sony fucked themselves by releasing the PS3 80 GB version.  Some Executive D-Bag sat at his desk and said... how can we remove key features and architecture from the PS3 and yet still call it an 'upgrade' and market it to everyone?  I know, let's add 20 GB's more hard disk space when we remove all those perks? PERKS?  What perks you might be asking?  Here is the list of the items I LOST when I went to the newer 80 GB PS3 system:

  • Lost 2 USB ports on the front of the unit (there are only 2 standard now)

  • Lost my 8-in-1 media card ports for flash memory reading

  • Lost my special onboard chip to play PS2 games (of which I have about a dozen)

  • BUT I GAINED 20 GB's of disk space!!!!

Sorry, SONY, but I hardly call this unit anything other than a supreme let down and disappointment.  Had it not been for the Blu-Ray, I would be an XBOX 360 user right now.  Next time you all decide to remove the IMPORTANT hardware - why don't you consult your user base.  What a bunch of shmucks!

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