In this chapter, we have talked about the difficulty for geeks to overcome the influence deficit. The common belief is that nerds are looked down upon because of their lack of social skills and obsession over comic books and video games. With the rise of technology, the definition of what it means to be a “geek” has changed rapidly. In my opinion, it is starting to become cool to be a nerd.
Nerds: Future Business Leaders?
One of the most influential nerds of our time, Bill Gates, knew what it meant to be a nerd. Starting to program from a young age, he was able to study hard enough to get into Harvard University. Now he finds himself as one of the richest people in the world. Whether he got beat up in school or not, we do not know. However, we do know that he spent hours upon hours perfecting his craft.
With the rise of tech companies such as Google and Apple beginning to dominate the American market, being a computer nerd is starting to become more popular. Since technology changes faster than we can comprehend, tech jobs are on the rise. Many fear that jobs are being eliminated by robots that are able to do the work for them. However, more jobs are actually being created. The key difference is that the new jobs being created require more education and experience to complete.
Why does this all matter? In my opinion, it shows that there is a rising amount of nerds in the world. New products that enter our world such as the Apple Watch, Google Glasses, and more all bring us closer to technology. Society is being revolutionized by geeks that allow many of the dreams we’ve deemed as science fiction come to life. If you still don’t believe me, we can take a look at pop culture and how it has shifted in the past decade.
Sci-Fi? D&D? Those are mainstream
Back before our generation of millennials, Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings were seen as strictly nerds-only. It was socially unacceptable to bring up those things in public. Recently, we have seen a string of comic book movies and a rebirth of Star Wars. Every time the latest movie in the Star Wars universe comes out, people flock to the theaters. Since Disney bought out the franchise, there has been a plan in place to add six more movies to the original saga. The only way Disney would be able to make money off this franchise is if the market was dominated by geeks. Could it be that it’s now mainstream to be a geek? I think so.
One of the first hand experiences I’ve had of the rise in geekdom comes with the popularity of Pokemon. Since the days of my youth, my older brother and I have made it tradition to challenge each other in every new Pokemon game that enters the market. As avid fans of the franchise since the beginning, we have become aware of a term that many video game players know: The Pokemon Curve:
As can be seen by the graph, there is a high unacceptable rate of Pokemon throughout high school. Therefore, Pokemon is very popular among middle schoolers and college students. From what I’ve experienced, in high school it was forbidden to talk about Pokemon in public. Since everyone was worried about their social stature, people would refrain from partaking in video games from their childhood. As people enter their college years, they start to feel nostalgic towards their youth and appreciate Pokemon more. It is now socially acceptable to speak of it in front of others. Furthermore, research has shown that the bell curve is changing. The average age of Pokemon players is increasing . Could it be that the geek fanbase is becoming mainstream? I think so.
Nerds will soon have the power
After going through all of this information, we have to apply it to our chapter about the influence deficit for geeks. My belief is that due to all of these facts about the changes in pop-culture and the job-market, nerds will soon hold all of the power. As seen by our pioneers in geekdom, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, it is possible and inevitable that geeks will take over the world. The process has already begun.