Are You a Geek or a Nerd? The Difference Really Is in the Data
The words "nerd" and "geek" are often used interchangeably, as if they mean the same thing. They actually don't.
The words "nerd" and "geek" are often used interchangeably, as if they mean the same thing. They actually don't:
Or, as Slackpropagation puts it, "Both are dedicated to their subjects, and sometimes socially awkward. The distinction is that geeks are fans of their subjects, and nerds are practitioners of them." In order to clarify those differences, he made this map. You can click here for a larger image of it.
Using that distinction, he pored over 2.6 million Tweets using both the streaming and search APIs for over a one month period. After crunching the numbers to figure out each word's PMI (pointwise mutual information), he got a pretty good predictor of the semantic word similarities between "geek" and "nerd." There were more than he expected, as you can see from the map.
Orange words are geeky. Blue ones are nerdy. The words on the vertical axis become more geeky as you go up, and the words on the horizontal axis become more nerdy as you move right. Slackpropagation continues: "Words along the diagonal are similarly geeky and nerdy, including social (“#awkward”, “weirdo”), mainstream tech (“#computers”, “#microsoft”), and sci-fi/fantasy terms (“doctorwho,” “#thehobbit”)." Other observations from the data include:
All observations quoted from Slackpropagation.
If the map isn't helpful to you, or you'd like another perspective, check out this infographic from Diego Martinez-Moncada at Daily Infographic. The dataset is different from Slackpropagation's, but it comes from the same 2012 time period - and draws the same conclusions:
So now that you have all that, where do you stand?
- Human beings are psychologically hardwired to fear differences
- Several recent studies show evidence that digital spaces exacerbate the psychology which contributes to tribalism
- Shared experiences of awe, such as space travel, or even simple shared meals, have surprising effectives for uniting opposing groups
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs is updated for the 21st century in a new study.
- Maslow's famous "Hierarchy of Needs" describes different levels of human motivation.
- A new study updates the hierarchy through modern methods.
- The research shows that self-actualized people share 10 specific traits.
There are many ways to posit the fundamental nature of reality.
- After thousands of years, and an infinite amount of novel experiences, there are today many dueling schools of philosophical thought.
- A great philosophical background takes into account a number of metaphysical positions and ideas.
- These 10 philosophy books all take on the questions of existence in a unique and varied manner.
There are two main types of sexual fantasies. One, however, is more destructive than the other.
- There are two main types of sexual fantasies.
- One of them is more harmful to the a relationship or marriage than the other (by a lot).
- Sexually fantasizing about somebody else, though, neither hurts a relationship nor helps it; instead, it has the same mental impact as random daydreaming.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.