Not so long ago, the derogatory terms "geek," "nerd," and "dork" were used interchangeably. Current usage is starting to separate the terms into orthogonal components. In this view, dorks are socially challenged individuals, nerds are people interested in intellectual or academic pursuits, and geeks are people fascinated, perhaps obsessively, by obscure or very specific areas of knowledge and imagination. Geek is the most general and positive of the three terms and lends itself to plenty of geek subcultures.
The word geek can take on several different meanings. As discussed above, it can be a noun, used to label a person. It can also be a verb, used to describe two or more people (usually geeks) deeply engaged in conversing about some technical subject. Alternatively, it could describe a single geek deeply involved in some geeky act (such as computer programming). I have also heard it used in place of the verb "to kill", but that may just have been cheap late 90's role-playing manual prose at work, rather than valid cultural usage. It can be used as an adjective (in the form: geeky), used to denote that some action (or person) has geek-like qualities. The word geek originally referred to carnival performers who would do disgusting things for pay (a common example would be biting the heads off of live animals).
In Davis, geeks can often be found spending time at:
- Anywhere in Kemper Hall — especially The Dungeon
- Browsing the Apple Store between class breaks
- At Bizarro World looking at comic books and playing geeky games.
- Computer Science Club
- Davis Hacking Society
- Davis Urban Gaming Group - A NERF club on campus.
- Davis Anime Club
- Star Trek Club at UC Davis
- Davis Wiki, especially the Davis Wiki IRC channel, Wiki BBQs
- English Country Dancers
- Davis Roleplaying Activities and Gaming Organizational Network
- Anywhere you find Grad Students
- Their parents' basement speaking Klingon (See Languages)
Some of the older geeks out there may remember a fad from the mid 90s, the "Geek Code". Basically, it was a geeky way to let the other cool kids in the know figure out what sort of geek you were. So what's your geek code anyway?
- Just for old time sake, here's my stab at it: GCS d— s+: a- C++++$ UBLX+++$ P+@ L++$ E— W++@ N o K w—(+++) !O M++(+++)$ V— PS++(+++) PE Y++(+) PGP t 5++(-) X R@ !tv b+++ DI+(++) D—(+) G e++>++++ h— r+++ y? —EK
- Someone with more knowledge of the wiki's technical aspects should create the wiki's own Geek code.