The Geek Code is a perhaps a little silly in-joke among geeks; a way of introducing yourself to another geek by how you score on different geeky things, such as Star Trek or programming tools.
What follows is my geek code:
-----BEGIN GEEK CODE BLOCK----- Version: 3.12 GCS/L/P d--@ s+:-- !a C++(++++) UBL++++$ 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? ------END GEEK CODE BLOCK------
Here it is in expanded and explained form with some comments by me (marked with “MC”):
GEEK TYPE CODE (GCS/L/P):
Geek of Computer Science, Geek of Literature, Geek of Philosophy.
MC: Among other things. As Lazarus Long so aptly put it (with a little help from Robert Heinlein): “Specialization is for insects”.
GEEK DRESS CODE (d--@):
My t-shirts go a step further and have a trendy political message on them. But that varies...
MC: ...but they're all black. I actually have a t-shirt with my geek code printed on the back.
GEEK SHAPE CODE (s+ --):
I'm a little taller than most. I tend to have to fight against a strong breeze.
MC: 1.85 m. Weight varies around 70 kg.
GEEK AGE CODE (!a):
It's none of your business how old I am.
MC: I'm on my second gigasecond, but not my third. That should give you a general idea.
I was born the same year as such celebrities as musician Hank Williams III and the author China Miéville, the year of the last succesful moon landing and the year the KI10 based DECsystem-10 was introduced.
GEEK COMPUTERS CODE (C++(++++)):
My tendencies on this issue range from: “Computers are a large part of my existence. When I get up in the morning, the first thing I do is log myself in. I play games or mud on weekends, but still manage to stay off of academic probation.”, to: “I'll be first in line to get the new cybernetic interface installed into my skull.”
MC: I'm not much for computer games. The few exceptions are Nethack, MUD and text adventure games/interactive fiction, but that was a long time ago.
GEEK UNIX CODE (UBL++++$):
I use BSD and GNU/Linux. I am the sysadmin. If you try and crack my machine don't be surprised if the municipal works department gets an “accidental” computer-generated order to start a new landfill on your front lawn or your quota is reduced to 4K. Getting paid for it!
MC: See Computers I Have Known and Loved for more on this.
GEEK PERL CODE (P++$):
Perl is a powerful programming tool. I don't write shell scripts anymore because I write them in Perl. Getting paid for it!
MC: But mostly Python and Golang, these days.
GEEK GNU/LINUX CODE (L++$):
I use GNU/Linux ALMOST exclusively on my system. I've given up trying to achieve GNU/Linux.God status, but welcome the OS as a replacement for DOS. I only boot to DOS to play games. Getting paid for it!
MC: Here the Geek Code shows its age. I haven't started MS-DOS since the 1980s!
GEEK EMACS CODE (E+++):
Emacs is my login shell!! M-x doctor is my psychologist! I use emacs to control my TV and toaster oven! All you vi people don't know what you're missing! I read alt.religion.emacs, alt.sex.emacs, and comp.os.emacs.
MC: I build my own version of Emacs, though, since I don't want any of this Xft and GTK crap a modern Emacs seems to use by default.
GEEK WORLD WIDE WEB CODE (W-):
The web is really a pain. Life was so much easier when you could transfer information by simple ASCII. Now everyone won't even consider your ideas unless you spiff them up with bandwidth-consuming pictures and pointless information links.
MC: But here you are, reading this on my web pages... On the other hand, I do hope my web pages are filled more with content than pointless images. See the colophon for some thoughts on this.
GEEK USENET CODE (N+++):
I read so many news groups that the next batch of news comes in before I finish reading the last batch, and I have to read for about 2 hours straight before I'm caught up on the morning's news. Then there's the afternoon...
MC: Mostly in Gmane nowadays, although for a long time I still read groups from the Usenet proper, specifically comp.compilers, alt.sys.pdp10, alt.folklore.computers and a few others.
GEEK USENET ORACLE CODE (o+): I have been incarnated at least once.
MC: The Usenet Oracle is now known as The Internet Oracle and is still around. A rather funny (in both senses of the word) mythos has sprung up around him (and his girlfriend Lisa). See also the Wikipedia article.
You owe the Oracle an incarnation.
GEEK KIBO CODE (K++):
I've read Kibo.
MC: ...and I've kibozed for my own name in Usenet.
GEEK MICROSOFT WINDOWS CODE (w):
Ok, so I use MS Windows, I don't have to like it.
MC: Once in a while I'm more or less forced to. I don't know much about it, though, so consider me a Windows luser. Strategic incompetence, perhaps.
GEEK OS/2 CODE (O-):
Tried it, didn't like it.
MC: But it was leaps and bounds better than MS-DOS. Unixen seemed nicer, though, and I went with ABCenix on a Luxor ABC 1600 and then SunOS on a Sun 3/60 instead.
GEEK MACINTOSH CODE (M):
I use a Mac, but I'm pretty indifferent about it.
MC: I use a Macbook. OS X seems like a real Unix to me. It's just plumbing for Emacs, anyway.
GEEK VMS CODE (V):
I've used VMS.
MC: ...and discovered the pain of porting Unix applications to it.
GEEK POLITICS & SOCIAL ISSUES CODE (PS+++):
Legalize drugs! Abolish the government. Fuck the draft!
GEEK POLITICS & ECONOMIC ISSUES CODE (PE):
Distrust both government and business.
MC: Hell, yeah!
GEEK CYPHERPUNKS CODE (Y++):
I am on the cypherpunks mailing list and active around Usenet. I never miss an opportunity to talk about the evils of Clipper and ITAR and the NSA. Orwell's 1984 is more than a story, it is a warning to our's and future generations. I'm a member of the EFF.
MC: The old cypherpunks list has been dead for many years and Clipper is long gone, but I took the gist out of the description and applied it to the modern world.
GEEK PGP CODE (PGP++):
I have the most recent version and use it regularly.
MC: I use PGP but please consider alternatives. See my contact information.
GEEK STAR TREK CODE (t):
It's just another TV show.
MC: ...and I don't own a TV tuner. I watch very few TV series.
GEEK BABYLON 5 CODE (5):
I've seen it, I am pretty indifferent to it.
GEEK X FILES CODE (X+@):
I've converted my family and watch the show when I remember. It's really kinda fun. But that varies...
MC: I really dig the characters also featured in the split off series The Lone Gunmen, even if they're quirky and dorky and the jokes sometimes are too much.
GEEK ROLE-PLAYING CODE (R@):
Role-Playing? That's just something to do to kill a Saturday afternoon. But that varies...
MC: I was into RPGs in the 1980s. Haven't really played since then.
GEEK TELEVISION CODE (!tv):
I do not own a television.
MC: I own rather a lot of DVDs, though.
GEEK BOOKS CODE (b+++):
I consume a few books a week as part of a staple diet.
MC: Mostly Science Fiction and fantastic fiction nowadays. Some namedropping: Charles Stross, Ken MacLeod, Diana Wynne Jones, Neal Stephensson, Neil Gaiman, China Miéville, Mark Chadbourn, et c.
GEEK DILBERT CODE (DI++):
I work with people that act a lot like Dilbert and his boss.
MC: At least once in a while. Scott Adams' comics are sometimes much too close to reality. I can't honestly say I appreciate them anymore.
GEEK DOOM CODE (D---):
To hell with Doom, I miss Zork.
MC: Text adventures games are much more fun than those boring First Person Shooters. On the other hand, I haven't played any computer games in years.
THE GEEK CODE (G):
I know what the geek code is and even did up this code.
GEEK EDUCATION CODE (e++):
Got a Baccalaureate degree.
MC: A degree in Literature, would you believe? With a side order of Linguistics, History, Philosophy, Religion, et cetera ad nauseam. So many courses, so little time. Ars longa, vita brevis, and all that.
GEEK HOUSING CODE (h----):
Married with children — Al Bundy can sympathize.
MC: I wouldn't compare my life with Al's in any way, really, but there you go.
GEEK RELATIONSHIPS CODE (r+++):
Found someone, dated, and am now married.
MC: Twice, even.
GEEK SEX CODE (y?):
Male. It's none of your business what my sex life is like.
Last updated: <2016-02-27 23:11:14 MET>