Philosophy, Psychology, Nerdisms, Writing from the Trenches

Posts tagged “apple

Nerds vs. Hipsters – Why it’s a thing

If you’re looking for the social media stuff, it has moved over to Social Media for the Common Man. I will be updating that with both basic and advanced techniques for interacting on the web with your fellow man. You’re free to take or not take my advice. I will also take suggests in comments, on Twitter, on Facebook, and through email. Feel free to contact me.

I’m working three jobs and having a fairly good social life (much to my surprise), so updates may be sporadic.

Speaking of a “social life”, I had a ticket to ComicCon (#sdcc) on Sunday and guys…

Seriously, guys…Nerd overload

Anyway, lately I’ve been contemplating Nerdom, my current status within the hierarchy of Nerdom (I mean, c’mon; I made the pilgrimage to Nerd-Mecca [on the Sabbath, no less]) and I wanted to point something out.

Nerds and hipsters are in a culture struggle. My real contemplation started when I pinned an infographic on Pinterest. At first, I thought it was a joke, but I got several responses to it.

Then, I tweeted something about Shark Week and soon found myself shoved into some hipster strewn corner of the Internet. It was like I was living on a Risk board. When did the hipsters take Shark Week?

In Nerds: How Dorks, Dweebs, Techies, and Trekkies Can Save America (and Why They Might Be Our Last Hope) David Anderegg says,

“Young adult urban hipsters embrace nerd/geek stereotypes and costumes because this is a way of distancing themselves from mainstream America.”

The thing about stereotypes is that you tend to brush against the walls of your stereotype no matter how atypical you try to be. But, one of the really great things about nerds is that they usually don’t care. Often times, a nerd will place practicality over appearance. That’s not to say that don’t care about cleanliness (stereotype) or attracting a mate (stereotype), they just have other things on their minds.

I wear glasses because my eyes aren’t so good. I prefer to wear jeans, a t-shirt with a pop culture reference, and a pair of Converse. I really like the way those shoes look paired with boot-cut jeans. I suppose that’s my costume, but it’s what I’m comfortable in.

I’ve been working with web technology since 7th grade. I love Apple products. I grew up surrounded by them (my dad had a Newton!). I have a lightsaber, I love television shows, mostly scifi dramas, and Joss Whedon is one of my heroes. Not ironically.

Apple Newton

This. This is a Newton. Unpopular ancestor of the iPhone

The hipster is extremely concerned about their appearance, which is interesting that the opposite intent often yields the same result.

Nathan FillionHowever, the big difference between nerds and hipsters is enthusiasm. My ticket to ComicCon was too last minute for me to wear a costume (got the ticket Saturday night at 8, had to leave at 6am Sunday). I didn’t feel right throwing something together half-assed.

The thing I’m really getting to is: hipsters like things ironically. What does that mean? It means they’re either a) too afraid to admit they like something in actuality or b) they say they like something to sound outrageous or cool or hip.

Nerds don’t love things ironically. They squee. They freak out when they see Nathan Fillion. They work all year on a costume they wear once a year…and they don’t even get in the door.

Hipsters’ attitude and their tendency to disguise themselves as nerds may have led to nerd chic, but now it’s giving nerds a bad name.

The next time you see a hipster and mock them, stop and think.

Perhaps it’s only a nerd.

P.S. We’re f*&king taking back Shark Week.

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Aside

Soapbox Podium Thumping – eBooks

*shuffle shuffle shuffle* SQUEAK! *clears throat and steps onto soapbox*

I’m about to pontificate, so feel free to ignore my opinion.

I stumbled across something I’m not going to link to because I don’t want to support the cause, even indirectly, but I want to be clear.

eBooks should not be the be-all-end-all direction of the publishing industry.

I know what you’re thinking, “Kate, you have mentioned on your blog several times how much you love your nook, and your iPad. You are addicted to gadgets. How can you say such things?”

I love eBooks. I love my nook. These things are true.

But, unless it’s an actual, physical book at some point in its history, I have a hard time taking it seriously for the simple fact that an author can’t sign it.

Every time I see that scene in Beauty & the Beast, when he shows Belle the library, my heart races, my pupils dilate, and a little voice in my head sings, “I want to go to there”. If I’m ever rich enough to build my own house, that library, be it physically possible, will make the final blueprint. You better believe there will be a track ladder. 

I suggested an author to a friend. Said author has a new book coming out soon, which I also drew to the attention of aforementioned friend. This author is someone who I know and have spent time with. Friend freaked out.

Squees, all caps on Facebook, I was thrilled, thinking, “Awesome. She’ll enjoy a good read, as all people of the world should.” Then I got this note.

“What’s your address? Will she sign stuff?”

Um. Well. Yeah, I guess. I mean, why else would you become an author if you couldn’t sign a body part…er…flyleaf or two?

Now, imagine you meet J.K. Rowling (in a parallel universe where Harry Potter is available on eBook). Would you have her sign your nook? I mean, come on. That’s not really the same. You could add a digital flyleaf in an iPad app, but it’s not the same.

As I am clearly the conflicted character in this novel, I’m going to tell you right now: if there were seven books that I could have with me at all times, the Harry Potter series would make that list in a heartbeat (maybe not all of it, but still).

eBooks rock portability, and, coupled with an eInk screen, things look pretty good. But there are some things that you need to see in hard copy.

There are some pages you need to thumb through.

There are some things that you need to get signed, if only to show off to your friends who don’t happen to eat pancakes with awesome authors.

If you’ve ever been to a book signing or plan on going to one, hold that book in your hand and think about this: without that person sitting at the table at the front of that line, this thing – this gigantic, momentous bundle of cardboard, paper, and ink squeezed by your hot, little hands that took you to a place you’d never been – would not exist without them.

You are holding a piece of someone’s soul and it’s not trapped in a little computer box.

It’s contained in this thing that you can give to your mother when she’s lonely. Or, you can read to your son when he’s sick. Or, you can rediscover when you’re swinging from your track ladder on a rainy Sunday evening.


Aside

Shameless Apple Product Gushing

I got an iPad 2.

I am such an Apple nerd. I’m sorry, I know. It’s like the Mark of the Beast.

But, I love this thing so much. I want to make it a little bed to sleep in at night. What do I use it for?

Okay. List time.

1. Media input – Time Warner Cable TV, ABC Player, Netflix, Vevo. Plug me in, I am ready to go. And this whole battery life thing? No joke. I get at least six hours of streaming time. Don’t ask me how I know that. I’m hard at work. Seriously.

2. eReader – There is nothing like this badass screen to read books on. Oh, man. Shoot. I have a nook, which I still use for outside and the bathtub and whatever, but one thing I didn’t realized I missed: colored highlighting. Any color. Pick a color, you can highlight in it. If you think that highlighting is not important, then you have never read good non-fiction. Squee! Blue! Orange! Red! Chocolate! Puce!

3. Mobile RSS – I know a lot of people. I like some of them. And, I subscribed to their blog feeds. Here are some of them:

    A. Lee Martinez – author, juggler, he’s got some fun stuff to say and he doesn’t sling any BS
    Kristen Lamb – author, social media expert…no, social media goddess
    Chuck Wendig – author, screenwriter, oh, man, I love this guy. I have favorited three of his posts. Only three because I haven’t been able to get to the rest because I’m laughing so hard.
    Okay, yes, an obvious trend in who I follow. My point is still valid.

4. Social Media – What’s the deal with Twitter? Why do I twitch like a junkie when I’m away from it for too long? Not that I would know. I was a Twitter junkie on my iPhone long before the iPad, but for some reason, I always have to be plugged in. But Twitter for iPad? That app is so intuitive, it knows what I want to do before I do. You flip through pages, you follow links. Oh, my heart flutters.

And, GetGlue. I keep track of my overwhelming media consumption and earn BADGES! I am so excited about virtual stickers. What am I, eight years old? Yes! Check-in to Game of Thrones with 5,000 other people!

5. News – ABC News, Mashable, Wall Street Journal. Even fake news! The Onion has an app. 

6. Productivity – You know, because that’s why I actually bought the thing. Ack, this is the most boring number in my list.

dropbox. yeah. confetti.

PDF Reader/Annotater. hurrah. vuvuzela. 

Popplet, okay, now we’re talking. It’s like brainstorming. Paste images, draw pictures, text input, connect things. Like a white board, but digital.

And, of course, I immediately set the screen to this:

Why did I buy it? It may have something to do with hypnotoad, but I love it nonetheless.