9780307450340

The Geeks' Guide to World Domination

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780307450340

  • ISBN10:

    0307450341

  • Edition: Original
  • Format: Trade Paper
  • Copyright: 2009-03-10
  • Publisher: Three Rivers Press
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Summary

TUNE IN. TURN ON. GEEK OUT. Sorry, beautiful people. These days, from government to business to technology to Hollywood,geeksrule the world. Finally, here's the book no self-respecting geek can live withouta guide jam-packed with 314.1516 short entries both useful and fun. Science, pop-culture trivia, paper airplanes, and pure geekish nostalgia coexist as happily in these pages as they do in their natural habitat of the geek brain. In short, dear geek, here you'll find everything you need to achieve nirvana. And here, for you pathetic nongeeks, is the last chance to save yourselves: Love this book, live this book, and you too can join us in the experience oftotal world domination. becomea sudoku god brewyour own beer builda laser beam classifyall living things cloneyour pet exorcisedemons findthe world's best corn mazes graspthe theory of relativity have sexon Second Life injurea fish jointhe Knights Templar kick asswith sweet martial-arts moves learnludicrous emoticons masterthe Ocarina of Time pimpyour cubicle programa remote control quoteHe-Man and Che Guevara solvefiendish logic puzzles touchCarl Sagan unmaskLinus Torvalds visitBeaver Lick, Kentucky winbar bets writeyour name in Elvish Join us or die, you will. Begun, the Geek Wars have From the Trade Paperback edition.

Author Biography

GARTH SUNDEM is the bestselling author of Geek Logik: 50 Foolproof Equations for Everyday Life. He and his wife live in California with their two kids and a large Labrador.

Excerpts

Welcome to my GEEK brain.

It has exactly 314.15 information slots. While I wish there were more slots, alas, there are not. And while I wish these slots were packed with things like mathematical proofs of Millennium Prize problems, the mechanics of teleportation using Einstein- Podolsky- Rosen entanglement, and the physics behind NASA’s new plasma propulsion engine, this is not the case either. Instead, elbowing out useful, enriching, or scientific facts are folding instructions for a jumping origami frog, lists of English words you can spell on a basic calculator, and haikus written in praise of SPAM (the pork product of questionable lineage), all of which threaten at any second to burst through my facade of normalcy like parasitic aliens from John Hurt’s chest. Geek attack: Picture it. It’s not pretty.

And, for better or for worse, I’m not alone.

Today’s ubiquitous geek is like a massive musical mixing board, with
various geeks turning up or turning down different dials, boosting–for
example–80s pop arcana or programming languages or fantasy football
Stats or behavioral economics or quotes fromThis Is Spinal Tap(the last
Of which have the relevant dial turned up to 11). We don’t all boost the
same dials and we certainly don’t appreciate beingdefined;however,
there is one constant that applies to all brands of geek–in all of us,these
dials are turned way up.
In fact, our geek informational dials are turned
up to the point that they sometimes drown out our ability to function
smoothly in the social world; in other words, with our geek specialty of
choice thumping away inside our brains at maximum decibels, things
like social niceties, our wardrobes, our anniversaries, and our ability to
contribute to dinner conversation without injecting weird factoids from
The mating strategies of clownfish can be effectively silenced.

Take heart, dear geek: With the world evolving toward ever- higher
Levels of required specialization, more and more people are turning up
Their information dials to the point of usurping their ability to function
Normally. In short, more people are becoming geeks.

To illustrate this geekification of modern society, imagine–if you
will–a middle- school rocket club. One kid follows the directions, carefully
penciling in exact fin placement and then, after allowing the required
drying time, painstakingly sanding, painting, and applying decals
until the finished rocket is a mere blip in a wind tunnel. All another kid
wants to do is send a live payload as high as possible–into the clear
plastic cockpit of a three- stage D- engine rocket, he packs intrepid (and
potentially ill- fated) caterpillars, each with a name like Buzz or Chuck
or Neil. A third kid has a vision: a center fuselage flanked by auxiliary
tubes, each with a separate nose cone, the whole contraption having the
potential to arc gracefully skyward or, three feet off the launch pole, to
start spinning wildly, explode spectacularly, and negatively affect hearing
in the faculty adviser’s left ear.

Yes, I knew these kids. (Today, the first is in the Stats department
at Oxford, the second is an entomologist specializing in system change
due to catastrophic events, and the third is an environmental architect.)
OK, I was one of them–I oscillated between keeping a meticulous flight
log and pirating the rocket engine gunpowder for use in more terrestrial
pyrotechnic experiments. Thanks in part to genetics–my dad is a former
president of the American Accounting Association–I also programmed
choose- your- own- adventure stories in BASIC, circa 1987, eagerly anticipated the logic puzzles in the next installment ofGamesmagazine, and
designed multilevel dungeons on graph paper. In an especial

Excerpted from The Geeks' Guide to World Domination: Be Afraid, Beautiful People by Garth Sundem
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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