In the past being called a geek was a way to say that someone was less than cool. Now, in 2012, being a geek is the new chic. From taped glasses and suspenders, to trendy blazers and the latest gadgets, the “Geeks” are now taking the world by storm. Their unique sense of style and their trendsetting ways have everyone dying to be just like them. But in the tech world, being a geek is more than how you look. It’s about the gadgets you carry, the places you go, and the people you know. See how you can go from chic to geek with these 11 tips: —Ashley Rushford
It doesn’t matter if you prefer ultrabooks, tablets, or MacBooks, you’re not going anywhere without a smartphone. It is definitely a requirement for every entrepreneur. But a tech entrepreneur needs one because it’s web enabled. The Samsung Galaxy S III is a great example. The latest in the Galaxy S series offers more than most smartphones. It has one of the most sophisticated mobile experiences to date. It’s light, thin and can fit right in the palm of any hand, plus the Android Ice Cream Sandwich operating system makes multitasking simple. You have the option to watch HD videos while emailing or texting, if you so choose.
A profile picture gives insight as to who you are and what you may like. While the average person will try to be as handsome as possible in their picture, techies usually choose a profile pic that will give people an idea of what they do.
Some tech profile photos will show the subject with some sort of electronic in their hand, while other techies may have a cartoon or caricature as their profile picture to catch the attention of fellow geeks. Many use a standard headshot to show their professional side, even though they are all tech underneath. Technology coolhunter Corvida Raven switches up her profile pic regularly, but it’s always interesting and never run of the mill.
People will not know about a particular product unless it is put into the spotlight. Usually, entrepreneurs tend to put their business or product into the limelight by displaying an
ad on a local website or by handing out business cards. But in the tech world there is no better way to advertise your product than to have a launch page. A launch page provides a platform for users to broadcast new developments and announcements. The most important rule to a viral launch page is to grab people’s attention, and keep them coming back for more. Launch it Now is a web application to help startups build a launch page and populate a mailing list in six easy steps.
The typical entrepreneur will consult with the Small Business Administration and Score. These organizations are great resources that help small and emerging businesses maximize their success. But black tech firms need help above and beyond what these national and nonprofit organizations can offer.
Take the NewMe Accelerator for example. The residential technology program geared towards tech entrepreneurs lasts twelve weeks long, twice a year. Participants are given the chance to receive one-on-one mentorship from Silicon Valley’s elite executives and hackers. Black Founders is another organization with a goal to increase the number of successful black entrepreneurs in technology. They hold events that give tech startups help with not only building a product, but running a company.
It is typical for the average person to enjoy a cup of coffee at Starbucks or even skim through numerous books at Barnes & Noble. Techies prefer to live up to the idea of being trendsetters and are always on the cutting edge. You will most likely find a techie in a coworking space. These places offer office space and dozens of lecture classes a week. Two popular coworking spaces are the General Assembly, which has over nine locations worldwide, including sites in New York, Berlin, and London, and WeWork Labs in NYC and San Francisco. Plus, we would be remiss not to mention Citizen Space, owned by Toby Morning in San Francisco. It was one of the main hangouts for NewMe Accelerator’s inaugural class.
In the corporate world, wearing a suit and tie, or a dress with heels, is the norm. However, techies and entrepreneurs tend to have their own style, preferring to switch things up a bit. A male geek will likely wear a blazer and some sort of graphic tee with jeans. A female techie may add color to her outfit with a pair of trendy earrings. At Black Enterprise we love how CyberSynchs founder, Amos Winbush III (pictured here), keeps his wardrobe business casual with a hint of geek flare.
Taking notes, setting reminders, and saving important information and documents are a must for any entrepreneur. There is a lot of information you have to remember daily to stay on track. Geeks tend to stay in the know by using Evernote,
SugarSync and DropBox. These particular applications allow users to take notes, sync files onto devices, save web pages and share ideas with colleagues and friends. While most people prefer to keep it simple by saving documents on a USB or jotting down notes on a pad or Post-it, the geeks are using these apps to stay on track digitally.
Techies and geeks are not all about business, technology and education. In their spare time, they like to park it in front of the television and indulge in their favorite TV show. While everyone else is watching Grey’s Anatomy or CSI, the geeks are tuning into hit web series The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl–a popular show that focuses on J, the main character, as she interacts with co-workers and love interests who tend to place her in uncomfortable situations. Geeks can relate.
Where you invest your time, money, and energy says a lot about who you are. The environment is one cause that is close to a geek’s heart. While many
entrepreneurs are not concerned with being eco-friendly because they think it is costly, a true geek knows that saving the environment and money goes hand in hand. They do this by using eco-friendly water bottles and coffee mugs that can be used repeatedly and are pretty easy to travel with.
They upgrade their place of business and homes with compact fluorescent light bulbs and low-flow water fixtures that cut the cost of utility bills.
Whether you are a geek, techie or even an entrepreneur, everyone has someone they look up to. Many people adore Oprah Winfrey and Russell Simmons because of their unwavering determination and achievements. However, techies and geeks admire tech innovators such as CEO of Black Web Media Angela Benton and The YBF founder Natasha Eubanks. Both women are examples of how anyone can go geek with just a passion, persistence and the right tools.