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Non-Geeky Gifts for Tech Geeks 142

An anonymous reader writes "FiringSquad.com has just put out another holiday gift guide. They've gathered together, along with the usual video cards and whatnot, several non-techie toys with a techie slant. With the exception of an mp3 and a digital camera, everything else they recommend is stuff I haven't seen on any list before. They have things ranging from $10 to $7500. My favorite has to be the Blendtec blender. 2 horsepower motor. Turns hockey pucks into mulch."
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Non-Geeky Gifts for Tech Geeks

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  • by Kelson ( 129150 ) * on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:14PM (#17332492) Homepage Journal

    If you want to jump ahead in the article, here are your options:

    • Introduction
    • For those who se...
    • For those who li...
    • For those who li...
    • For those who li...
    • For those who li...
    • For those who li...
    • For those who li...
    • For those who va...

    Gee, that helps!

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Joebert ( 946227 )
      I got to "For thoose who like it fast" & "For thoose who like it in the morning" & lost my train of thought.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Try the hidden Printer (and reader) Friendly Version [firingsquad.com]!
    • by duguk ( 589689 ) <dug&frag,co,uk> on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:30PM (#17332632) Homepage Journal
      Enlightenment [firingsquad.com] LED Torches: Luxeon K2 [surefire.com] $299 and Luxeon XO3 [amazon.com] $40

      Health [firingsquad.com] Blenders BlendTEC [willitblend.com] for $400

      Shiny [firingsquad.com] Porter Cable 7424 Random Orbital Sander [amazon.com] for $120

      Chill [firingsquad.com] Zwilling J.A. Henckels Cermax M66 Wine Chiller [amazon.com] for $130-200 or some knives for $13?

      Look good [firingsquad.com] Canon PowerShot SD800 IS Camera [amazon.com] or Fuji F31fd [amazon.com] for $400 or Pentax K10D Cameras [amazon.com] - $4000

      Loud [firingsquad.com] SV Sound and HSU Research Subwoofers, etc, $400 to $7500

      Fast [firingsquad.com] AMD Processors. Woo!

      Morning [firingsquad.com] Impressa Z6 [amazon.com] and Impressa E8 [amazon.com] Coffee Machine things for around $1000

      Tradition [firingsquad.com] 1GB IPod Shuffle [amazon.com] for $80

      Meh, its all adverts really. Heres some junk for the lameness filter:

      Don't read this, I mean really. Its a load of crap. Really, it isn't good. Its just writing for the sake of writing. Honestly. I mean it. Don't read this, I mean really. Its a load of crap. Really, it isn't good. Its just writing for the sake of writing. Honestly. I mean it. Don't read this, I mean really. Its a load of crap. Really, it isn't good. Its just writing for the sake of writing. Honestly. I mean it. Don't read this, I mean really. Its a load of crap. Really, it isn't good. Its just writing for the sake of writing. Honestly. I mean it. Don't read this, I mean really. Its a load of crap. Really, it isn't good. Its just writing for the sake of writing. Honestly. I mean it. Don't read this, I mean really. Its a load of crap. Really, it isn't good. Its just writing for the sake of writing. Honestly. I mean it.

      Monkeyboi

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Your junk text had almost as much content as the article.
      • by 1u3hr ( 530656 )
        Doesn't matter which link I try, they all load a fucking Flash ad that won't go away. Wants to set cookies to bypass; no.
        • are you using Firefox and the Adblock Plus extension? that seems to help a helluva lot...
          • by 1u3hr ( 530656 )
            I'm sure I could fnd a way, but it's not worth the time to worry about it. I'm not in the market for any of that stuff anyway.
      • Actually, they recommend Intel processors. The stuff about AMD is just fluff text at the start.
      • by Fred_A ( 10934 )
        Look good Canon PowerShot SD800 IS Camera or Fuji F31fd for $400 or Pentax K10D Cameras - $4000
        Woah, if you paid $4000 for a K10 you got mightily ripped off. You should find it for less than 1/4 of that.

        OTOH, just budget $4000 for it. You'll get to buy a few lenses. :)
  • get all the bitz? You know how it goes, there's always a piece of rock hard crap in the bottom somewhere!
  • While I have no problems with them recommending an iPod - they're okay machines and all - I do sort of wonder why they would make it on their gift list, which would presumably to suggest things one *hasn't* already considered. Can anyone honestly say the thought of giving an mp3 player to someone hasn't occurred to them?

    I was also sort of wondering about the subs - nice recommendations, I must say, but doesn't it make something of an awkward gift? Maybe it's more of a "stuff we thought was neato" list. C
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by joto ( 134244 )

      Yup, the thought of giving someone an mp3 player has not occured to me. Honestly.

      First of all, they are a bit expensive for a christmas gift, which is more than enough to exclude them from consideration from me. Or, if I choose a cheaper model, they are "a cheaper model". Giving away a "budget mp3 player" is about as fun as giving away a "budget whatever"...

      Secondly, most people either already have one, or don't want one. Third, if they still haven't got one, but want one, they probably want to choose

      • I would agree with you with the exception of teenage family members - they may be less likely to own a player and more likely to want one.

  • Wow$$$ (Score:4, Insightful)

    by StillAnonymous ( 595680 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:19PM (#17332534)
    A bit pricey, no? $300 for a flashlight? A $3600 capaccino machine?

    Maybe I'm just poor or cheap, but most of these are outrageous. Who is their target audience? Fortune 500 execs?
    • Re:Wow$$$ (Score:5, Funny)

      by Joebert ( 946227 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:25PM (#17332586) Homepage
      Who is their target audience? Fortune 500 execs?

      My money is on the people living in thoose execs basements.
    • Re:Wow$$$ (Score:4, Funny)

      by LurkerXXX ( 667952 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:27PM (#17332600)
      Not only that, their blender doesn't even have a pull starter [campingworld.com]
    • Anyone who works for Google; they're all (multi) millionaires, right?
    • You think that's expensive? You should see how much they paid to have this ad run on /. this close to Christmas.
    • Amen! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by KingSkippus ( 799657 ) * on Friday December 22, 2006 @02:35AM (#17334626) Homepage Journal
      A bit pricey, no? $300 for a flashlight? A $3600 capaccino machine? Maybe I'm just poor or cheap, but most of these are outrageous. Who is their target audience? Fortune 500 execs?

      Amen! I'm always amused at "gift guides" that are composed of items that are hundreds of dollars. Just how the hell much money do these people think my family is worth at Christmas? A really expensive Christmas gift to me is around $50. If I were married, I'd probably spring for $100 or so for my wife.

      Yet I see guides like this, hear radio ads telling me to by diamonds that cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, or even to do something stupid like buy a new car for my hypothetical wife. A new car? Do these people honestly think I would make such a huge decision without the knowledge, full acceptance, and blessing of my wife?

      Am I just the world's biggest cheapskate?

      Wait, no, I think I know what's going on here. They want me to think I'm a cheapskate if I don't buy hundreds of dollars worth of crap for my family for Christmas.

      Well, I'm sorry, the joke's on them. I think that along with the lesser-expensive gifts I give to my family, a really nice one is not begging them for money the rest of the year because I'd be in debt beyond my imagination for burning through money like that. And call me crazy, but I also think that a really nice gift for one's spouse instead of earrings or a new car that you don't need is—gasp!—a realistic plan for retiring some day so that we can spend wonderful decades together without having to work our asses off for useless junk like, well, a $300 flashlight or a $3600 cappuccino maker!

      Honestly, $300 for a fucking flashlight? If someone game me one of those, I wouldn't be grateful, I'd be extremely condescending. "You spend $300 for a fucking flashlight? Did you win the lottery, or are you just too damned stupid to know that you can get a really good one at Target for less than $10?"

      What scares this geek is that there are obviously people out there who actually buy this junk. What's doubly scary is that they're pitching it to my friends and family as if I actually would want any of this crap. God, I hope they're not that stupid.

      • The scary part is that not only are many people that stupid, but that they also vote too!
      • by RESPAWN ( 153636 )

        And call me crazy, but I also think that a really nice gift for one's spouse instead of earrings or a new car that you don't need is--gasp!--a realistic plan for retiring some day so that we can spend wonderful decades together without having to work our asses off for useless junk...
        You must be single.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by RSquaredW ( 969317 )
      To be fair, the SureFires are self-defense flashlights. I keep one in my car in the door compartment. They're meant to create an extremely bright light to blind an attacker, and for that job they work well. Easier to use and safer (more range) than a knife, and the cops won't look twice at a guy with a flashlight on his keychain.

      They're definitely not general-purpose lights - you want that very bright light for when you need it. Also, $300 is definitely for their top-of-the-line version - there are good
      • by flewp ( 458359 )
        Aren't the ends of the Surefires also designed with little "cut outs" that are for self defense as well? Not sure, but I think I saw as such in an ad or review for them in one of my dad's outdoor industry magazines.
  • Ground School (Score:1, Interesting)

    by jmagar.com ( 67146 )
    These are nice and all that. But the best gift this season, at least for me, is Ground School [jmagar.com]. Gaining my private pilots license is a dream, and the ground school part is a great way to begin. It's relatively cheap compared to the hours of flight time. And it allows for the dreamer (me) to decide quickly whether or not they have the commitment to the dream or not.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    The author is impressed with the expense of the items he has chosen and not their utility. Couldn't get through the whole article because the f**kin ads were just too annoying.
    • by ximenes ( 10 )
      Everything they picked seems to be absurdly expensive, although I just gave up around the third page from the absurdity.

      They diss Shun knives as inferior to ceramic and Hattori "damascus" knives, whereas they are much more reasonable (still a little much) for someone who doesn't live to cook. If you aren't interesting in cooking, why buy the fanciest knives the world has ever seen just to say you have them?

      As far as flashlights go, how about a MagLite LED for $50 rather than a $300 flashlight?

      Everything on
      • by karnal ( 22275 )
        As far as flashlights go, how about a MagLite LED for $50 rather than a $300 flashlight?

        They did suggest the Inova X03, of which I don't own (I do own about 7 LED flashlights, including a 3 D cell LED Mag.)

        The X03 is 32$ @ Amazon (through their link). But, if you do get the Mag, there's a suprise - in the tailcap, you get a regular bulb to swap in if you feel like... they don't include another LED module.
      • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        For the flashlight, if you have ever seen how bright this thing is you would want two of them.
      • Someone who likes really good flashlights. I bought the L7 (rechargable but larger) and use it all the time for everything from general-purpose to bike headlamp. I can light up things well over 100 feet away - and I'm not talking some wimpy barely-visible light, either. And it's not just the brightness. The beam doesn't have all the bright and dim areas common in lots of lights.

        Bought a couple of L2 models for presents last year and they were hits. My sister, who is far from a geek and initially wondered wh
      • by CharlieG ( 34950 )
        when you "into" flashlights, you'll find out that
        1)Maglights are NOT that good - their beam quality sucks
        2)Maglight is the Microsoft of flashlights - they use lawsuits to prevent a LOT of competition
        • by joto ( 134244 )

          when you "into" flashlights, you'll find out that
          1)Maglights are NOT that good - their beam quality sucks
          2)Maglight is the Microsoft of flashlights - they use lawsuits to prevent a LOT of competition

          I'm not into flashlights, apart from the fact that I use them a lot. And maglite makes dependable flashlights that most likely still gives you the most bang for the buck.

          Ok, maglite has a lot of models, but as far as I'm concerned, there are two models worth considering.

          The Maglite charger is a classic.

          • I'm not into flashlights, apart from the fact that I use them a lot. And maglite makes dependable flashlights that most likely still gives you the most bang for the buck.

            No, Mag-Lite is simply the best of the worst. They're a lot better than your cheap plastic $2 Chinese crap, but they're still low end flashlights. They're essentially still coasting on a reputation acquired 25 years ago, when all other flashlights were essentially cheap junk. They haven't changed significantly since then. Nowadays you can get much better. Anyone who depends on a flashlight gets something by Streamlight [streamlight.com] or Surefire [surefire.com].

            • by joto ( 134244 )

              As I think I made clear in my post, I was not arguing that mag-lite was "best". I was arguing that among maglites many models, there were two models that were "good enough" in their segment, and that if you needed a flashlight in either of those segments, those two were the most cost-efficient flashlights for professional users (like me).

              I'm aware that there exists flashlights that costs 10 times as much as a mag, that MAY have the same build quality. I'm also aware that most anything on the market that c

              • Instead of claiming that expensive is always better (which is correct, but irrelevant), maybe you can try to find a light from above-mentioned manufacturers that can replace these two lights as a cost-efficient solution. But remember, if it costs 10 times as much, it must last 10 times as long between repairs or replacements. Good luck!

                Durability is not the issue. The quality of the light beam on the mag is abysmal. The only thing going for the mag design is the aluminum body, which is very reliable. You can spend only 2 or 3 times as much and get a flashlight that outperforms anything mag has by at least an order of magnitude. Repair and replacement? Durability is about the same for all. The fact that you don't seem to realize how poor the mag is at doing its job, i.e. projecting light, pretty much explains why you still use one. Seriou

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by triffid_98 ( 899609 )
          when you "into" flashlights, you'll find out that
          1)Maglights are NOT that good - their beam quality sucks
          2)Maglight is the Microsoft of flashlights - they use lawsuits to prevent a LOT of competition

          3)9 out of 10 officers prefer the 5 D-cell Maglight to conventional police batons.
          • by CharlieG ( 34950 )
            Actually, MANY police departments have actually baned things like 5 D Mag-lights for that exact reason

            Go get a nice streamlight, or a Pelican - not too expensive, and great lights. Surefire? Nice lights (I have 2) - but IMHO, a tad overpriced
        • 2)Maglight is the Microsoft of flashlights - they use lawsuits to prevent a LOT of competition

          Maglite has principles [maglite.com] - they manufacture their lights in the United States because they haven't been seduced by the "globalization" trap. They use every tool available to keep some asian company from creating low-quality look-alikes of Maglite's designs. This is simple business sense - no company will last for long if they let a competitor destroy their reputation with "cheap shit".

          Traitors have taken over the U.
      • by nuzak ( 959558 )
        > They diss Shun knives as inferior to ceramic

        The Kyocera knives are the sharpest thing in the world all right. Til you cut into something hard like a bone. Chippy chippy.
  • article sucks (Score:3, Informative)

    by Average_Joe_Sixpack ( 534373 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:28PM (#17332616)
    Some good gifts:

    * GUI C++ Programming Guide
    * Hex/socket set
    * Leatherman
    * Vernier caliper
    * Dremel or Rotozip set
    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Yes, that is an excellent list. I'd be happy to receive any of those items. Maybe add to that list a 0 to 1 inch micrometer which reads to 1/10,000 of an inch.

      I also think the Kill-A-Watt [p3international.com] power meter is a pretty nifty and inexpensive gift. It measures power, voltage, power factor, and frequency of the mains feeding your electrical items around the house.

    • by cebarro ( 596789 )
      You must be the PC, right?
    • These things [kingston.com] are great as backup if you have an additional device (like a camera) that uses SD cards. Here's another one [thinkgeek.com]. Are there other makers of these thumb drive-sized USB adapter/readers?

      Even cooler would be a micro-SD card [wikipedia.org] inside an SD adapter inside a thumb drive reader - matryoshka-ish!
  • If you were a true geek you wouldn't be so concerned with the blender. The barista in a box over there is a gift from the gods, as coffee is the nectar of the gods, as all true geeks know. I wish that I had $3,600 for a coffee maker that is that simple to use, yet squirts out such delicious looking coffee.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by BluBrick ( 1924 )
      I wish that I had $3,600 for a coffee maker that is that simple to use, yet squirts out such delicious looking coffee.
      Me? I'll be happy with my $5 Swiss Gold reusable filter that is simple to use yet dribbles out delicious tasting coffee. But you go ahead!
      • Who needs a filter? Grind the coffee fine enough and enough of the grounds sink to the bottom once you break the crust.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by udderly ( 890305 ) *

      That blender is off the hook. Did you see the video [youtube.com] of it reducing the rake handle to dust? Crap, one of their blenders [blendtec.com] has a freakin' 20 amp motor. I just bought a hammer drill [milwaukeeconnect.com] that can punch through three feet of concrete and it only has a 7.5 amp motor.

      Admittedly, I haven't a clue what I would do with a 20-amp blender, but it looks impressive.

      • Admittedly, I haven't a clue what I would do with a 20-amp blender, but it looks impressive.
        Blow a fuse? I don't know about you, but my house has 15 amp circuits.
  • Why bother? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Captain_Spaz ( 1022025 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:38PM (#17332680)
    Non-geeky gifts for geeks? Why bother? They're geeks for a reason - they like geeky stuff! It's like getting a pair of socks for xmas... you don't want them, you don't need them, and you'd rather something that plugs into your PC. USB socks, there's a gift...
    • by Trogre ( 513942 )
      Speak for yourself, I never seem to have enough socks.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Sigma 7 ( 266129 )
      Non-geeky gifts for geeks? Why bother? They're geeks for a reason - they like geeky stuff!


      Most geeky-stuff that non-geeks would consider to be a present for them (e.g. book about computers) is usually something that they would already have anyway.

      Of course, socks can never go wrong, since those things are known to disappear one-at-a-time. Giving them as christmas presents help replenish their stocks.
  • My god.... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Mogster ( 459037 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @08:53PM (#17332776)
    it's full of ads!
  • Yet another (Score:3, Informative)

    by Brandybuck ( 704397 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @09:25PM (#17332992) Homepage Journal
    Yet another website that destroys perfectly playable videos by wrapping them in crappy proprietary Flash.
    • Re:Yet another (Score:5, Insightful)

      by quacking duck ( 607555 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @10:20PM (#17333308)
      Out of curiosity, what's your preferred alternative?

      MPEG - open, but filesizes are too big
      Quicktime - proprietary, not as widely used
      WMV - proprietary
      RealVideo - proprietary, with plenty of Slashdot hate toward the company
      Ogg video - no market penetration
      XVID/various "divx" AVIs - low market penetration

      I suppose the best open and reasonably widespread alternative is mpeg 4, but I'm interested in what you think websites ought to use instead of Flash.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by VENONA ( 902751 )
        I'm not the parent, but MPEG4, from what I've seen. I don't really have any experience with divx, though. Am I missing something great? I definitely don't want to mess around with Flash. I'm tired of being bugged about needing the latest player, I don't see what problem it solves that's worth more bloat, etc.
      • Err nothing? I like my web without animations. I never install Flash and I don't allow gif animations (thank you Konqueror). The web instantly become almost as readable as a book. If you must provide cinematic content, a link do download a divx is perfectly fine with me. Please don't embed moving stuff in the area where I'm supposed to read. Respect your visitors and they might return.
        • by rho ( 6063 )

          Since most visitors are not horrified by judicious use of Flash or animated GIFs, I think most sites are respecting their visitors. You are not much of a target audience, and will continue to be largely ignored.

          • I pretty sure that even though most web users are not horrified by animations they would prefer a still web. It would be interesting to see a study were people are asked to use a web site with and without animations. Judicious use of animations could indeed be good but since 99.9% web sites put way too much animations that serve no purpose it is simply easier to disable the whole thing and to enable only for a few sites. People don't complain because they don't know there is a way out.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by nmb3000 ( 741169 )
        WMV - proprietary

        It's true that WMV videos are in an ASF container, however the codec itself is an implementation of the VC-1 codec, a standardized codec that is open to free implementation by anyone (like FFmpeg).

        XVID/various "divx" AVIs - low market penetration

        Uh... AVI containers are probably the single most widespread video container available. *Everything* can read them. As for DivX/XviD...

        I suppose the best open and reasonably widespread alternative is mpeg 4

        DivX/Xvid *are* an implementation of MPEG

        • Uh... AVI containers are probably the single most widespread video container available. *Everything* can read them.


          The Wii can't. But the Wii can play flash video.

          Flash video is just less of a hassle.. it has the highest penetration of any video player, and you can target Flash 6 and cover everyone.. including linux users which rarely have working embedded video.
      • The difference between a Flash and any of the other formats, is that I don't need a specific player, all I need is the codec. I can play Mpeg4 with MPlayer, Xine, etc., as well as browser plugins based on those. With Flash I am limited to one single Adobe supplied player that is NOT supported on my platform.

        I would prefer that the formats not be proprietary. But if I can't get that, my next preference is a proprietary format that doesn't make me reboot into another operating system to use. Any website that
    • by aliens ( 90441 )
      See the problem with Flash video versus everything else is sites get higher play rates with Flash than with the others. This can then be turned into $$$ by selling pre-rolls.

      I speak from experience as well as there being articles written on the subject.

      I guess YouTube should have gone with some other format eh? I'm sure they would have made the splash that they did if they had used OGG.
  • My favorite has to be the Blendtec blender. 2 horsepower motor. Turns hockey pucks into mulch."
    No kidding! This blender would sure turn any holiday gift (geeky or not) into dust! (then sell the dust on ebay)
  • by Colin Smith ( 2679 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @09:44PM (#17333104)
    Yeah, that's fine if you intend to get your daily fibre from nearby trees. If you'd prefer something with a bit more taste a Hinari Genie can grind, blend and juice.
     
  • Non-geeky? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Zorque ( 894011 )
    The subs and the Core 2 Duo are fairly geeky things to want, I would think.
  • ... Unicomp keyboards [pckeyboard.com] with buckling spring technology -- the true heirs of the IBM Model M. Because squishy plastic junk just won't do.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      No. I despise those things. When I'm typing, I don't want to have to turn my amps to 11 just to hear my music (well, when I do listen to music).

      QUIET.
      • Still, those silent ones have certain disadvantages. They're not as comfortable for long typing sessions, and wear out in a year or two. A keyboard with buckling springs or mechanical switches has better tactile feedback, and may last for decades.
        • by Gatton ( 17748 )
          The tactile feedback is fine. It's the audible feedback I find offensive (as the poster mentioned.) I haven't used a model M in several years but I still cringe when I think of that loud springy clacking sound. Now give me a keyboard with the same feel and less sound and I'd be happy.
    • I recommend getting a Model M from 1993 or earlier. There was a fast quality decline from there, to the point that my 1996 M samples have a noticably worse typing feel than the ones from a few years before. I picked up a Unicomp for comparision a few years back, and it wasn't even in the same league.
  • YAGDOIPPL (Score:4, Funny)

    by glwtta ( 532858 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @10:56PM (#17333520) Homepage
    Yet another god-damned

    One

    Item

    Per

    Page

    List

    You know what? I don't think I can stand the internet anymore.
  • by TheSHAD0W ( 258774 ) on Thursday December 21, 2006 @11:57PM (#17333830) Homepage
    THIS is a blender. [northerntool.com]
  • I just saw a blocked flash ad. Clicked "Skip ad", and got to another blocked flash ad. Clicked "Skip ad" again. Still the same page. I don't mind ads on websites. Full-page ads that require flash, javascript and cookies to get past, and I do draw the line.
  • Generally I only buy tech/geekie gifts, even for non-geeks. It's simply an issue of buying stuff that I know is good and useful. And since technology is the area I know a lot about, I can be sure I am getting something good and non-crappy. Of course, it can be difficult, because it means I have to find excellent technology for the non-teckie.

    Sometimes, I just have to give up and get something non-tech though. For example, my 86 year old cousin who lives in a stone cottage in the Irish countryside a
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by jacquems ( 610184 )

      Kitchen appliances/gadgets seem to go over well with geeks and non-geeks alike. They're certainly popular with the kitchen hackers in our house.

      Also, Heston Blumenthal [wikipedia.org] and other proponents of molecular gastronomy [wikipedia.org] have taken cooking to a seriously geeky level. Heston Blumenthal has written several books that would make excellent gifts to get non-geeks to question how they think about cooking.

  • by swordgeek ( 112599 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @12:55AM (#17334100) Journal
    Every item on that list was geeky--most just didn't happen to be geeky in a computer-centric fashion.

    A few points here:
    1) Pod espresso machines are NEVER as good as you can make with really fresh, properly ground coffee, in a good machine, with some significant practice. At the same time, they're probably not as bad as most people are likely to get, since people are lazy. On the other hand, espresso geekery is absolutely first-rate.
    2) Knife hardness != knife sharpness.
    3) Subwoofers should be purchased with the speakers, and should be designed together.
    4) Actually, I'm going to stop. This was just a crappy article all 'round.
    • by Duds ( 100634 ) *
      Those coffee machines you put stupid pods in I always think are just Soda Stream machines for the grown up geek.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by phoenix123 ( 547397 )
      Sorry to dismiss point 2):

      Knife hardness == edge retaining

      It's not difficult to get any decent steel knife sharp as a razor. Any knife sharpener can do it. The trick is to have a blade that will retain that sharpness for a while. A very cheap knife will lose its sharpness after slicing the first half of a cucumber, better knives last for cutting half a dozen steaks out of raw meat and professional knives need only one re-sharpening per cooking session. If you seldomly prepare larger meals, any _decent_ knif
      • While really nice high-carbon steel knives are harder and do retain their edges better than stainless under ideal conditions, I think that stainless has the edge in the real world with micro-rust on the bevel not being a concern. I have Global knives, which are made of their chrome-moly-vanadium steel. They're super-hard and they keep a keen edge for a long time without any rust.

        Honing should be done on a ceramic rod "steel", so that you don't take too much material off, but straighten the bent cutting edg
  • Sex toys but realized they'd be used in some hacked gadget or other.
  • would anyone use a 1.5 kW bomb-proof blender in a home kitchen? I mean, the ability to disintegrate solid objects is fun, but most foodstuffs succumb well enough to a non-overkill appliance. I don't use a chainsaw to slice bread, either.
  • karmawhore (Score:3, Informative)

    by argStyopa ( 232550 ) on Friday December 22, 2006 @09:10AM (#17336442) Journal
    link to single page print-ready version, so you don't have to click through page after page of minimal text and maximal ads.

    http://www.firingsquad.com/print_article.asp?curre nt_section=Features&fs_article_id=2069 [firingsquad.com]
  • I'm a blender. I blend hockey pucks, that's all I'm programmed to do.

    Were you any good?

    Are you kidding? I was a star. I could blend a hockey puck at any speed. 30,000 RPM, 32,000 RPM, you name it. 31... But I couldn't go on living once I found out what the mulch was for.

    What for?

    Kitty litter.

  • These people have done no research and have no idea of what's good in every category. How could they mention point and shoot cameras without even touching on Leica's entry into the market. This is Leica people, as in best lenses in the world. They talk about speakers as if all that's important is a subwoofer, this list is not for slashdot, it's for suckers.
    • Yes Leica is a really good camera maker, but they are not golden. We got my mom a Leica point and shoot 35mm maybe eight years ago, just before the major digital push, and frankly, the pictures weren't that great on it.

      On another note, one positive thing about the camera section of the article was that they finally pointed out that the main factor that makes a digital camera great is the same thing that made film cameras great...THE LENS! I'm tired of all of these megapixel wars. An 8 megapixel credit
  • For those Geeks who dont take showers or change their clothes daily.

Never say you know a man until you have divided an inheritance with him.

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