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Closet Slashdotters: The 'Intellectually Curious'

samzenpus posted more than 8 years ago | from the don't-call-me-a-nerd dept.

394

An anonymous reader writes "Slashdotters are certified geeks, but apparently there's a bunch of other people out there who are very interested in science, technology, politics and culture but they don't want to be known as geeks. A media consulting firm called OMD did a study for the company that owns Space.com and LiveScience. They conclude that 60 million Americans can be called "intellectually curious." Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them."

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Slashdoter... (2, Funny)

sbaker (47485) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162037)

Slashdoter? One who dotes on slash? Cool!

It makes them... (5, Funny)

jfclavette (961511) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162044)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them."
MySpace users

Re:It makes them... (2, Funny)

wxjones (721556) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162136)

TV viewers

Re:It makes them... (3, Insightful)

ThomasFlip (669988) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162148)

or people that watch Friends or people that listen to top 40 music or people who watch the OC or people who read People Magazine or George Bush or people that don't vote or people that watch American Idol or people that believe in Creationism or people that follow celebrities closely or etc...

Re:It makes them... (-1, Troll)

kz45 (175825) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162247)

or people that watch Friends or people that listen to top 40 music or people who watch the OC or people who read People Magazine or George Bush or people that don't vote or people that watch American Idol or people that believe in Creationism or people that follow celebrities closely or etc...

or pompous assholes like you?

Some people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162262)

are better than other people, you populist turd. You're among the other people.

Re:It makes them... (3, Insightful)

jbrader (697703) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162249)

It's not so much any one of those things but rather some combination.

Re:It makes them... (1, Interesting)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162183)

I was solicited to become the fiddler in a band the other night. I was rather ambivilent about the idea, but the guy was very enthusiastic about my sound and gave me a CD to listen to.

Turns out I kinda like it. Strange kinda celtic/gypsy/punk sound, as performed by the genetically engineered offspring of Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen. I'm inclined to at least try playing with them. If the money's decent I might be inclined to stay.

The contact address is a MySpace page. I didn't know you had to register with MySpace just to send an email.

Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!

KFG

Re:It makes them... (2, Funny)

Moofie (22272) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162333)

MySpace is pretty well regarded as a band promotion tool. For what it's worth...

Re:It makes them... (1)

eddeye (85134) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162193)

"Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them."
MySpace users

I was thinking more along the lines of soylent green.

Re:It makes them... (1)

FLEB (312391) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162206)

No, that's the other way around.

Re:It makes them... (5, Interesting)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162198)

"Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them."

I makes them apathetic [reference.com]
You can sum it up with the words "Don't know & don't care"

Anti-Intellectualism is a whole different ball game
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-intellectualism [wikipedia.org]

Answer (4, Insightful)

DreadfulGrape (398188) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162050)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them.

In-duh-viduals.

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Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162314)

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Check out the the prostitute schedule for April 19, 2006 at the MBOT [fuckedcompany.com] .

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Unlike Las Vegas, San Francisco does not regulate prostitution. So, the MBOT heartily welcomes everyone -- including HIV-positive customers.

Err... (-1, Flamebait)

anonicon (215837) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162052)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them

Republicans.

Re:Err... (5, Insightful)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162196)

I'm sure that was meant as a joke (atleast I hope it was), but that's taking it too far.

The Republicans have some very smart people in their party, just look at Rove. When you take away your bias towards him, he's a great political strategist. He'd have to be to get Bush elected.

Just because you don't agree with someone's views, doesn't make them unintelligent.

the rest are idiots. (5, Funny)

evacuate_the_bull (517290) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162053)

i for one welcome our...uhhhhhh

Re:the rest are idiots. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162070)

That's right, don't finish that. There is no point in welcoming them, they were here first. You were born into a world ruled by them.

Re:the rest are idiots. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162301)

...bi-curious overlords!

It had to be finished!

that's because (-1, Flamebait)

Aeron65432 (805385) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162054)

The rest are on digg!

Re:that's because (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162186)

The rest are on digg!

No way! The chances of all those people being under 15 years old seems pretty slim.

ummm ok (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162056)

Is being "intellectually curious" anything like being "bi-curious"?

Seriously, who is responsible for that term?

Re:ummm ok (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162217)

I suspect it came from someone who was marginally straight (but not entirely) but didn't want to be pigeonholed into the gay label. That of course would immediately happen if you were to identify as "gay curious" or simply "bisexual." That closes off a lot of options for someone trying to get a feel for their sexual identity. Once you attach a label to someone, it tends to stick.

They can't tell me that... (2, Funny)

Xeriar (456730) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162060)

They didn't intend any sort of innuendo there. "Intellictually Curious"? ...reminds me of that "Most females are secretly bicurious." study a couple years ago.

Rorschach Test (2, Insightful)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162163)

And sometimes what people see as innuendo is more telling about the observer than the observed.

Re:Rorschach Test (1)

Xeriar (456730) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162204)

Maybe, or maybe I remembered the discussion of said article a bit too much.

Well, same problem, I guess.

rss (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162062)

rss links not working for anyone else?

Re:rss (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162150)

Hosed for me as well.

They are looking for free/crazy porn! (1)

agent (7471) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162064)

They are looking for free/crazy porn!

It's obvious to the non-arrogant (-1, Flamebait)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162065)

You don't need to be technical to be intelligent. In fact, based on some of the posts and opinions here, I'd say that the intelligence curve isn't pushed to the right at all here at Slashdot.

There are a few outstanding posters, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I am among them. However anyone who replies to this one will most likely be one of the many less-than-average Slashdot members that I've described above.

Re:It's obvious to the non-arrogant (1)

From A Far Away Land (930780) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162162)

Trying to compare the intellectually curious to subaverage Slashdotters is like saying that everyone on Digg is a genius.

Re:It's obvious to the non-arrogant (-1, Troll)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162179)

I'm happy as Oprah's vagina in France you've made this outstanding thread in which all of the outstanding and intellectually superior Slashdotters can come to voice our satisfaction about being better than everyone else.

Want to be a geek? (0)

linzeal (197905) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162067)

Go to college and major in science or engineering. That is the only way to be sure that you will make it to geekdom.

Re:Want to be a geek? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162114)

major in science or engineering ... blah blah geekdom.

Computer Science = geek (fat or skinny - you pick it),
Computer Engineer = genius jock (powerlifter or soccer star - take your choice)

Listen to me now and believe me later - see for yourself on campus.

AC

Re:Want to be a geek? (1)

aweinert (969529) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162117)

Or, even better, both.

Not necessarily (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162129)

I'm on my way to a Ph.D. in computer science. I am not a geek. Hell, I haven't even bothered to create an account on slashdot...

Re:Not necessarily (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162268)

thank you, dear sir, for making my jaw fly off my face!
sincerely.

Re:Want to be a geek? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162277)

.. I went to college for Science, came out an engineer.

I've got to say I cheered out loud when I saw the group that watches PBS came out 53% female.

It's the first time I've been associated with a group that is more women than men in about 8-10 years.

I've got to say: I like this study.

Idiots. (1)

nugneant (553683) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162069)

Only idiots would hold back on knowledge and securing their future job-compatibility on basis of image alone.

To paraphrase the BOFH... War's too good for them.

Re:Idiots. (1)

solitas (916005) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162140)

Only idiots would hold back on knowledge and securing their future job-compatibility on basis of image alone.

Then you have met my supervisor (in title only)!

Re:Idiots. (2, Insightful)

slashdot_commentator (444053) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162174)

Ah, the naivete of youth.

Did you notice that the group that commissioned the study was a marketing group? Ever hear of the expression "astroturf"? Do you really think that those people who are like that are of concern to us?

Even your contention belies inexperience. Anything that requires interaction with other human beings, whether its promotion, acceptance in social niches, or management of subordinates, requires cultivation of "image". One first has to understand what is important to them, and then adapt their behavior to what best leads them to their objectives.

Whew! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162071)

I thought you said, Closet Masturbators.... Oh Wait. There's no difference.

What that makes the rest of them... (1)

rune2 (547599) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162073)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them.

Stupidly ignorant?

Re:What that makes the rest of them... (1)

xao gypsie (641755) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162139)

or blissfully ignorant, depending on how you look at it.....

Re:What that makes the rest of them... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162299)

intelectually apathetic, intelectually uninterested, intelectually unconcerned, intelectually lethargic, intelectually lazy ...

Surprising? (1)

Metabolife (961249) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162074)

I have a pretty good understanding of science and technology, but I don't feel like a geek. I see people that devote their lives and never develop social skills, I don't want to be one of those people. I like reading slashdot and learning how the world around me works, but if it starts to intrude in having fun in other ways, then it becomes a problem. What a lot of the geeks don't understand is striking a balance between what you do on your own time and what you do with others (if you even do).

Errr (5, Funny)

HeavensBlade23 (946140) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162075)

Wow, 60 million, that's impressive! Until you remember that 60 million is less than 25% of the population, at which point you slit your wrists.

Those still in a position to think clearly... (1)

jd (1658) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162167)

See being thrown out of a Vogon airlock for more details.

Re:Errr (1)

Feyr (449684) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162170)

that study is obviously flawed, as anyone who has ever done tech support will tell you, the percentage of intelligent people out there is FAR FAR lower than that.

Re:Errr (3, Insightful)

jc42 (318812) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162246)

... the percentage of intelligent people out there is FAR FAR lower than that.

Yeah, but note that the OP said "intellectually curious", not "intelligent". The two are unrelated (and orthogonal) properties.

A mouse or sparrow can be intellectually curious. But curiosity doesn't guarantee that they can understand what they encounter.

You can find a lot of people whose curiosity leads them into astrology or religion or a thousand other things that intelligence would lead them to sniff at, discard, then continue looking for something more worthwhile.

Re:Errr (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162187)

Total number of Americans: 250 million

Number of Americans who watch 6+ hours of reality TV programming every week: 190 million

Subtract.

Hey, I could've done that study for much less expense!

Re:Errr (1)

badmammajamma (171260) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162228)

Actually, there's more like 300 million people now. Of course, that still leaves 240 million dumbasses...

Re:Errr (1)

CMRichar (610129) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162326)

No, you start slitting other people's wrists, and possibly throats, in an attempt to drive that percentage UP. besides, the world might just be better off without some of these people.

And most of those hits (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162329)

were the result of misspelled Google pr0n searches gone bad!

Re:Errr (2, Funny)

cplusplus (782679) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162338)

at which point you slit your wrists.
No! Don't do that! There are so few of us already! The best solution is to breed and bring up our numbers. Oh, wait... it looks like we're doomed to extinction.

Oh, those red states... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162077)

I'm curious what that makes the rest of them

Creationists

Closet geeks?... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162078)

Nowadays I don't think being a geek and its accompanying stereotype are accompanied anymore. I'm a lurker of slashdot, APOD archive, and plenty of other "geek" sites but I also do jiu jitsu and weight lifting and plenty of socializing. It's all about balancing. People who don't want to be seen as a "geek" are entering in a societal change in perspective, but they are not going to do this by calling themselves "intellectually curious". That just divides the geeks and the accepted "curious georges" even further.

IT makes them... (1)

kaufmanmoore (930593) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162079)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them.

Wal-Mart Shoppers

Almost (2, Insightful)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162168)

I think the answer you were looking for was, "elitists".

hacking good and bad (1, Interesting)

opencity (582224) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162083)

I've always found it interesting that a 'hack' is an insult in music, probably from writing (hack writer), usually meaning someone who plays standard stuff and not very well. A hack in IT refers to a code workaround, and can be good or bad. A hacker (you get the drift ...)

Re:hacking good and bad (2, Funny)

Funkcikle (630170) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162093)

So what you are saying is...words can have more than one meaning? Wow! There should be a word for that!

Nerds that Matter (2, Interesting)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162094)

Intellectual curiosity doesn't make you a geek. Intellectual expertise - in any field or discipline, especially technical - makes you a geek. If you've got the rest of the package, like less physicality, fewer friends, insomnia, "microculture", Aspberger's symptoms, you're just a nerd. If you've got none of those, you're just a "normal". In that case, I feel bad for you.

As a word geek (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162190)

I will tell you that your distinction between geek and nerd is not commonly accepted. And as a film geek, I will quote you Orson Welles (from F for Fake)

"Experts are the new oracles. They speak to us with the absolute authority of the computer. And we bow down before them. They're God's own gift to the faker."

Re:As a word geek (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162285)

The same people who don't distinguish properly between nerds and geeks also typically fail to distinguish between hacking and cracking. Or between producer and director. The failure of normals to accept nerds or geeks, or their differences, does not require me, a geek of many colors, to deny them my gifts.

According to the movie "Freaks", geeks are freaks by choice, not by nature. And according to Slashdot, fake nerds are nauganerds [slashdot.org] .

Re:Nerds that Matter (5, Funny)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162223)

Q: How can you tell an extroverted computer geek from an introverted computer geek?

A: The introverted computer geek will look at his shoes while he talks to you. The extroverted computer geek will look at your shoes while he talks to you.

Q: How do you tell if an extroverted computer geek is Russian?
A: His shoes look at you while he is talking.

I like my way of telling Geeks apart from everyone else.

Re:Nerds that Matter (2, Interesting)

yourexhalekiss (833943) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162344)

I disagree.
Intellectual expertise - in any field or discipline, especially technical - makes you a geek.
I've ran Linux for a year and a half, code my own website, and am definitely interested in computers. I know HTML, SQL, CSS and I'm learning Perl. I love science fiction. I'm also a senior in college (Poli Sci major), am getting married this summer, had a 4:40 mile in high school, and took an honest-to-god model to prom. According to your definition, I'm not a geek - I don't have expertise in Linux - I'd make a crappy sysadmin, for instance. However, my computer skills definitely don't make me a "normal", either - I'm significantly geekier than your average MySpace user. I'm one of those 25% "intellectually curious" that the article mentions, and I just don't think you're correct.

Thay're called... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162097)

Bible Thumpers

Hmm... what's REALLY curious in this article? (2, Insightful)

sreekotay (955693) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162099)

Space.com and LiveScience found out that 40% of their test population likes SCIENCE and SPACE related stuff?

That *is* curious.

Thank you, that is brand new, surprising information.
--
graphicallyspeaking [kotay.com]

Re:Hmm... what's REALLY curious in this article? (1)

Hao Wu (652581) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162343)

For a place of nerds, Slashdot sure seems to care about their reputation very much. Even pretending that lurkers may care about theirs.

I'm not surprised (1)

meckardt (113120) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162105)

Why should this come as a surprise to anyone? Just check out the number of cable/satellite channels that are Geek oriented: Discover, National Geographic, Science, etc. There has to be a reasonable market for that kind of programming to support this.

Re:I'm not surprised (1)

dindi (78034) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162316)

don't forget that these "geek" programming channels are now full of "pimp my ride" shows. I think every channel on earth has at least one build a bike, pimp a car or similar show.

OK, you might say that it is geek as well, but I would check who is really watching these... I do honestly, while I do not care about my car, I like to see the technical ones (e.g. tuning stuff), but couldn't care less about stuffing 20 LCD displays and a fountain into the car ....

Also you see a lot of history related stuff and nature related things, and while you can look at these with a
"geek eye", I am sure some of the people just stare into them .. oooohhh there is a monkey ... how cute ...

Being a geek (1)

electronmaster (926497) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162110)

Well, I have to say, being a geek is a good thing. Im sure what people are afraid of being is nerds. Geeks have social lives, nerds do not, plus a few other minor differences. Geek is a title to be honored. I say this as I take a sip of a famous caffinated soft drink out of my "geek." glass I bought here: http://www.thinkgeek.com/homeoffice/mugs/5f01/ [thinkgeek.com]

Come out, Come out! (5, Funny)

JanneM (7445) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162115)

No need to hide anymore! Come out of the closet (it's too small for a soldering station anyhow)!

Cast your pretensions! Rise and walk proudly from the dark of the TV room into the bright flouerescent of the computer lab!

No more hiding copies of Make in a cover of Hustler! No more awkward stammering that you were just surfing for gay porn and somehow accidentally stumbled upon perl.org.

Testify! Say it: "I am Geek, hear me Mumblesomethingintelligleaboutapreprocessororsomet hing!".

Finally, Tom Cruise can come out! [grin] (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162359)

Watch this South Park video clip [youtube.com] if you missed my joke.

Some accurate terms: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162119)

"... apparently there's a bunch of other people out there who are very interested in science, technology, politics and culture but they don't want to be known as geeks."

Replace "geeks" with "pretentious, self-glorifying, politically marxist losers". Regular cool people have always hijacked and ripped off geek concepts, and the last thing those people want is to be mistaken for a Slashdotter.

Which is why I post anonymously.

"Intellectually Curious:" Post your relevant title (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162122)

I study the rhetoric of science and scientism in grad school. I read slashdot to get away from the television and celebrity gossip that my other colleagues seem to dwell on as "sources for cultural research."

I wonder if it's even that high (2, Insightful)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162132)

I figure the proportion from this study was about 25% of Americans can be considered intellectually curious. Frankly, until I went back to school, most of the people I dealt with on a daily basis weren't intellectually curious. Certainly, I'd say the number was under 25%, and that's with a job in computers (programming and consulting).

Just an observation.

Re:I wonder if it's even that high (1)

Frans Faase (648933) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162335)

Yes, I also wonder this. If you define 'intellectually curious' by being interested in popular science, you might come close. I have to say that I find most 'popular science' articles totally boring with respect to my intellectual curiosity. They usually answer zero of the questions that come to my mind when I have read the introduction.

Intellectually Alive (1)

Dracil (732975) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162133)

Considering that curiousity killed the cat.

I am Curious (2, Funny)

GoCanes (953477) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162142)

I am curious, but yellow.

Why not ask? (3, Funny)

wo1verin3 (473094) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162146)

>> "Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them."

Why not create a MySpace account and ask them...

Nerd Myopia (2, Insightful)

sielwolf (246764) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162152)

What is interesting about the article is how it gets this interesting result and then does nothing with it except to speculate. That they do not share the actual poll questions forces the reader to speculate themselves what they asked. So, yes, we know that they asked if people where intellectually curious about the world around them. But what else?

Parsing into what the article reveals is a certain "would you talk about science/etc in Social Situation A" (they keep mentioning cocktail parties) or other habits (e.g. what sort of television they watch).

But the implied conclusion of this article is "more people are geeks; they are just in the closet" which I think is a big leap in logic. And I think this article is very liberal with the terms geek/nerd.

Personally a "geek" isn't just someone "intellectually curious" but also someone who exhibits Nerd Myopia: they follow their geeky passions at the expense of all others. More so they find all other topics inferior (and will demonstrate subtle vitriol to outright belligerence). The article talks about how the Science and Passion [S&P] group will bring up science topics automatically while the other groups (Money/Success/Science [M/S/S] and Style and Science [S&S]) are interested but unlikely to discuss it. All of these groups are unlike the Other People group in that they would approve of a topic of conversation switching to a geek topic.

So what about the inverse? The article mentions "Desperate Housewives" and going out and careers. What if a geek topic switched to one of those? I'd suspect the M/S/S and S&S groups would be fine with those too while the S&P would not and probably get angry or dismissive. S&P geeks like their intellectually curious topics at the expense of everything else. All those other non-geek topics are shit and should be treated as such. For geeks "Desperate Housewives" is for secretaries and HR drones. Going out is mentally numb behavior and a scam by the liquor and clothing industries. Career talk is for PHBs. All of those things are commanded by simple deterministic logic of hard sciences. They're all "soft" and defy the ability to rule lawyer and one-up in the perpetual game of nerd battle-of-wills.

And for all this talk of "in the closet", that's the real barrier keeping people out: rabid intolerance for all things outside geekdom. Geeks, nerds, whatever aren't very big tent in approach. They make their bones by being exclusory. Everyone else is "Other People" and either an enemy or some sheep who can't be trusted to do anything. And attitude like that will keep most of that 40% (and a significant proportion of that 53% of the Science and Passion who are female) at arms reach.

Re:Nerd Myopia (2, Interesting)

flyingsquid (813711) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162302)

And for all this talk of "in the closet", that's the real barrier keeping people out: rabid intolerance for all things outside geekdom. Geeks, nerds, whatever aren't very big tent in approach. They make their bones by being exclusory. Everyone else is "Other People" and either an enemy or some sheep who can't be trusted to do anything. And attitude like that will keep most of that 40% (and a significant proportion of that 53% of the Science and Passion who are female) at arms reach.

My general impression is that geeks are probably more open-minded and accepting of people who are different from them than the general population, but that's just my subjective opinion, and of course it's biased as I'm a geek. As far as dislike of non-geeks go, sure: some geeks just aren't willing to take the time to understand people who don't think like they do. But part of it might have something to do with the deep anti-intellectualism that pervades American culture, where it's considered uncool and vaguely shameful to be intelligent, curious, and well-educated. A lot of us grew up being marginalized and looked down on by the cheerleeders and jocks, so given an excuse to look down on them, or some way we can view them as inferior, it's hardly surprising that we'll often take it.

Of course, being accepted by a geek vs. being accepted as a geek are two different things. To be a geek, you've got to display some expertise in an intellectually challenging field.

grr (2, Insightful)

EngMedic (604629) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162161)

it makes the rest of them sheep.

Lack of intellectual curiosity is the quickest way to piss me off. Admitting you don't know something, or that what you know is wrong, and then *refusing* to do anything about it makes my blood pressure rise so fast that i have to close my eyes to stop the blood from spurting right on out.

Re:grr (4, Insightful)

rblum (211213) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162184)

I don't know anything about ancient egyptian recipes, and, believe it or not, I could care less.

Hope the blood starts spurting. In case it doesn't: I'm also not interested in football. At all. Feminine hygiene products? Nu-uh. Understanding ancient germanic dialects? Not really.

You are, of course, an expert in all of them, or at least strongly inclined to read up on all of them now, right?

Hopefully, there's a large pool of blood now, and this post takes care of one more self-righteous hypocrite.

Re:grr (4, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162273)

I understand what the grandparent was trying to say, and I'm sure you do too. He just didn't phrase it well enough for it to endure the sort of nit-picking that so often goes on around here.

The thing that frustrates me is when people want something done, and can't be bothered learning how. The sort of people who say "I know nothing about computers. Can you setup my email program for me?". Now of course, once in a while that's fine. After all, people need a bit of help when they're getting in to something new. But when the same person consistently asks for help, not because they're novices but because it's easier to ask for help than it is to learn to do it your self, that's what gets annoying.

Re:grr (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162354)

Dude if you can get anyone in that group to admit they're wrong, you've won half the battle there. The reason they're so dumb is because they don't admit they're wrong.

Meat (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162164)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them

Worthless meat. (You can't even sell it!)

Makes them creative (1)

BooRadley (3956) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162166)

There are many things out there to learn about besides computers, networks, and hard science.

Being a technical geek is a little on the narrow side for many folks. Some of the most brilliant people I know do their best work with things like pencil and paper, stringed instruments, needle and thread, or the like. Though I wouldn't consider them geeks, I would say their intellectual curiosity has led them to develop their own talents far beyond what a non-curious mind would be capable of.

Let's call them ... (4, Funny)

gonerill (139660) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162178)

"i-curious."

No surprise to me (4, Insightful)

RocketRainbow (750071) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162213)

This is no surprise to me. ANU teaches a course in science journalism on the understanding that more people would like to read about science than sports in the newspaper, if only someone knew how to write about science. With so many interesting new discoveries and new technologies, it's interesting to find out what is going on. Not everyone thinks the science news is the most important news to read, but I've never met anyone who wasn't at least interested to know about the most glamourous or practical news items.

So why are the numbers so low? Maybe because the people who are most interested in science might not be very bookish, prefer to get their news from the telly and might not even have a computer. The person who most liked to talk about science news to me as a teenager was my school's bus driver and part-time gardener. Many farmers are illiterate and innumerate and resent other people using their brains while they toil like peasants, but generally they love technology even if they hate pure science. The people who are least interested are office workers, public servants and history teachers, whose work is less tangible and feel less connection to science and tech - but they are more likely to be the ones able to seek out internet news sources on their internet appliances.

Obviously this is just generalisation of my own personal experience, and probably very harsh, but I think it's valid to maybe 70% - I think it explains a lot of those numbers.

It also occurs to me that you need a certain density of people with a particular interest, otherwise the message doesn't get through that certain websites and communities exist or what jargon to use in order to find them. I didn't find slashdot or even google until I got to university because there was no starting point in the countryside. We got told the "best way" to search, "most respected" websites, etc. at high school, and that was all we had. And since I was the only "odd one out" I had nobody to compare notes with, except maybe my dad, and he lived in a different town 150km away. At that time, the 2nd most popular internet search was music, so I found some wonderful new cultural influences from mp3.com (back when it was relatively free and indie) which was easy, but it was really hard to learn about computers and technology on the internet - I didn't even know what to look for and unless it's related to something I have learnt, I still don't.

im just wondering (1)

Stanneh (775821) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162266)

considering this is slashdot article about slashdot have any of the servers caught fire yet?

Something else (1)

wkitchen (581276) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162271)

Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them.
Intellectually curious about something else, perhaps?

Not all, certainly. But I'm sure that applies to many.

Speaking Only For Myself (1, Insightful)

Quirk (36086) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162283)

I'm interested in science, technology, culture and, unfortunately necessarily, politics; but as to... "... a bunch of other people out there who are very interested in science, technology, politics and culture but they don't want to be known as geeks."

I can't imagine people who have abiding interests in science, technology, culture and politics having an inclination to care one way or another what other people call them. Putting out energy to preen and groom yourself to the dictates of the tribe doesn't jive with the energy and mental facilities capable of embracing such a wide swatch of knowledge.

Which begs the question (1)

Doomstalk (629173) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162298)

Are you a slashdotter, or just a little I-curious?

geekdom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162300)

geek (1)
def:
a person more concerned with being right than being popular.

If you can understand this..Maybe you are a Geek! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162309)

"but they don't want to be known as geeks"

IMHO..even though I use Linux and read /. and IANAL...IANAG Unfortunately many people still think that IAAG

Sort of in-between (2, Interesting)

magnamous (25882) | more than 8 years ago | (#15162319)

Slashdotters are certified geeks, but apparently there's a bunch of other people out there who are very interested in science, technology, politics and culture but they don't want to be known as geeks.
I'd say I don't really fit either category. I enjoy Slashdot, but I'm not a "certified geek" (assuming that means I know what I'm doing in geeky things, or that I make money off of my geekiness), but I also realize that I am highly geeky compared to much of the population. I don't really care if someone refers to me as a geek, so long as the intent isn't derogatory, but now that I think about it, "intellectually curious" is probably a better descriptor than anything else. That encompasses many "geeks" and "non-geeks" alike, and I've certainly met geeks who are not intellectually curious (at least in a Renaissance-like, interested-in-everything sense), so it seems more precise. "Intellectually curious." Nice. High fives.
They conclude that 60 million Americans can be called "intellectually curious." Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them.
"Knuckle-dragging clods." ; )

most likely a.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162345)

"Intellectually, I'm curious what that makes the rest of them."

digg user.



dissapointed in promotion of 'geek' term (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15162352)

i'm dissapointed in how people here seem to promote the term 'geek' for anyone with an interested in sci/tech. most people would rather stick a knife in their eye than risk being labelled a 'geek', and thus won't profess to an interest in these topics.
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