10 Aug 2011

The Modern Geek

Gone are the days when Rick Moranis was the shiny embodiment of the word "geek", or "nerd", because as insulting as those titles were while growing up, today, we're all nerd and communicating online is our revenge. These include our lashings out at society's occasional stupidity, the world's issues and of course, personal preference.

I can see you shaking your head right now, "I'm not a nerd" I can hear you think, but I hate to break this to you, you are. Well, that's not strictly true I guess. If you found this post via Facebook, chances are that you're safe, however, if you stumbled upon this post via Twitter, then I'm afraid you may have to face the facts and embrace your inner Urkel.

We're all constantly online, browsing, surfing, chatting, learning, smutting, whatever floats your boat, and growing up, that kind of thing was reserved for the uber-geeks and superhackers. Those guys that hit puberty and moved into their parents' basement to hack the planet. However, technology has moved on, and has given every single person in the world the opportunity to share his or her views on the world, all the time, and to me, that signifies what I am going to start referring to as the "Dawn of the Modern Geek."

You're still not convinced? How many pirated films have you watched? How many albums have you listened to that were downloaded? How many people that you've never met do you talk to on a daily basis? All of these things have contributed to our technology driven society, whether here in Africa or in the "First World."

The stereotypical "nerd" or "geek" wears thick glasses, can barely see and has the high score on "Frogger" or "Pac-Man" at the local arcade, but no more. Now, to be a true nerd, you need to be a luddite, a technophobe, someone who does not dabble online, the tables have turned and the reluctant will be left behind if they do not embrace the tools at their disposal. In a nutshell, you need to be an ignorant fool.

I am very proud of being a geek, I embrace it, now the question is, can you shatter that bubble around you and embrace your fate? It's evolution, our natural progression, we need to adapt to the times and utilise the tools and gadgets at our disposal to the best of our abilities or risk being left behind, alone in a dark corner somewhere on MySpace.

Here's the kicker, if you told me in high school (which ended 11 years ago) that the geeks and nerds would be taking over in South Africa, I would've laughed my ass off, however I think it's true.

It's 2011, and every day we're online, every time we share some of ourselves with the great online information superhighway, we contribute to the revenge of the nerds, we're contributing to the toppling of the "old way" of doing things. We're ushering in a new era, we're spearheading it in fact, and I, for one, think that there has never been a better time to be a geek, nerd or which ever term you prefer, because this is our time, and if you're reading this, welcome to your evolution.