Tag Archives: android

Nerd of the Year

Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg

Zuck, a quintessential nerd, was named 2010 Time Magazine Person of the Year.  He beat out some cool cats, like Afghanistan’s Hamid Karzai, a dude who’s bipolar, two-faced, and can look more stylish wearing a hat made of lamb fur (Karakul) than Brezhnev ever did.

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg edged out WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange, more hated in Washington than Osama and Kim Jong-il combined, while being wanted in Sweden for sex crimes. Too sexy for Sweden, wow!

However, I want to clarify that Zuck is a nerd, not a geek.  To me the distinction is clear – geeks crave to show off their prowess with gadgets while nerds need to know how those are put together. A geek can hold an iPhone 4 just right to avoid the antenna issue and without touching Home and Sleep causing Soft Reset. A nerd may not know which button adjusts iPhone volume, but can tell you that it sports an ARM Cortex-A8 processor manufactured by Samsung in 45mn, even though the nerd carries a Google Android G2 phone running Linux, in case he needs to fire-up LAMP stack while waiting for a bus.

Say a geek reaches for a razor-sharp Japanese katana sword. With exaggerated reverence he takes it by the long handle, careful not to leave unsightly fingerprints. The sword is raised high over his head, the swing starts with a deep guttural cry that peaks, as the blade slices off his toes.

Katana Sword

Katana Sword

A nerd grabs the sword by the blade, eager to examine the Tsuka handle for maker’s mark, and leaves bloody prints of fingers nicked to the bone. Easy to tell the two apart, though neither is Ninja material.

Still not clear? A nerd digs Star Trek, while a geek adores Star Wars.

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Not Your Mother’s Smartphone

Image representing Android as depicted in Crun...

Via CrunchBase

I got my mom an Android phone. She was ready for a replacement for a trusty four-year-old Motorola Razor.  A Samsung Galaxy S, no less.  She decided to stay with AT&T.  For the worst carrier ever, it’s not that bad.

When I picked Android for her, what was I thinking? That I was getting me one and it would be easier to answer her question as we were both learning same obscure features. That I could use a guinea pig in this somewhat non–traditional customer demographic.

Magnetic Core Memory

Magnetic Core Memory

Now, my mom’s smart.  She gets that from me. She’s not a rocket scientist, she’s a nuclear engineer (kinda). She’d been using computers for forty years, starting with the ones that had memory cores.

Mom’s also hardworking. That’s her own thing. I figured she’d read the manual but she did not. Guess more smart than hardworking.

It only took her a couple of days to figure out how to make a phone call.  Another week, and she could answer one. One thing she had learned was that pressing a button on a touchscreen harder does not make it respond faster.  The screen did not crack in the process – kudos to Samsung. The other day she heard that there were ‘apps’ one could load onto the phone.  She’ll try that soon, maybe even this year.

Do I wish I bought mom an iPhone?  Neah, she’s cool already.


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