Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Geek Appurtenances

Wear proof of your accomplishments
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Members of the military wear ribbons or medals to show off their achievements. With the exception of highly prestigious awards bestowed by elected officials, most of the achievements associated with these devices are prescribed and very standardized. They might be for skills such as marksmanship or for service in particular theaters such as Vietnam. Proposed is an academic corollary. Geeks or nerds would wear standardized ribbons to prove that they majored in engineering or physics, read certain books such as On the Origin of Species or The Republic, or participated in lab research. Graduation ceremonies already include such an achievement-based dress code, but the achievements are not particularly specific, and the ceremony itself consumes a very short fraction of the year and is confined to academia. What I have in mind would be worn to a Linux users group, a Mensa gathering, or a Star Trek convention.
kevinthenerd, Oct 01 2012

"I know regular expression" http://store.xkcd.c...larExpressionsShirt
[hippo, Oct 01 2012]

Doctoral hat http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctoral_hat
Part of the doctoral regalia in Finland and Sweden. [Alx_xlA, Oct 08 2012]

[link]






       Effectively, yes- because you would run the risk of being cornered by a geek with the same insignia who really had read the book cover to cover 437 times and who would want to discuss every minute detail of Elvish battle tactics, in fluent Elvish.   

       Would you want to take that risk? We think not.   

       The place you wouldn't need these is a Linux group/trek convention/Mensa meeting as attendees are self selecting. Better for formal wear at meetings, and in non-geek social situations.
8th of 7, Oct 01 2012
  

       [+]   

       hmm... Mensa ribbon with IQ emblazoned on it (different coloured ribbon for member or non)   

       //Origin of Species// filigree wire pin of the evolution-drawing   

       //lab research// guinea-pig, duh.   

       Of course croissant/fishbone lapel pins or earrings, maybe with cumulative bun/bone scores ;D   

       These things all exist of course, though rather unorganizationalized.
FlyingToaster, Oct 01 2012
  

       This is a bit like the achievements on Khan Academy.
PainOCommonSense, Oct 01 2012
  

       This could be a bit misleading, as somebody like me might have a huge fruit salad simply for having read many important books and having traveled extensively and absorbed other cultures, whereas somebody who's spent the last decade at MIT working on a single project for the genuine betterment of mankind would only have a couple of rows. Only somebody with near-instantaneous recall of the various accolades and a good view of my chest plaquard would be able to determine my complete lack of formal education. Others would just see about twenty square inches of spangly ribbons and be disproportionally impressed.   

       I say this because the same thing happens in the military. A ring-knocking colonel who's spent thirty years in rear echelon logistics commands and never fired a weapon in combat may have six or seven rows of fruit salad, whereas a career NCO who has spent the same three decades down in the dirt catching bullets with his teeth might only have three rows. If he's never been wounded andor recognized for meritorious action, he might not even have that, whilst under another command he could have a DSC to hang above his garden.   

       This brings to mind another issue; who awards these things? In the military, there is a well-established (if sometimes unfairly subjective and occasionally downright nepotistic) protocol for citation that has no civilian counterpart. Who is to recognize geekly prowess? On the same turn as my diverse self-education may win me a shit- ton of accolades and leave that hard-working genius engineer in the dust, I might come up totally empty because I'm not a member of MENSA or any other intellectual organization and have never earned a college degree. If this isn't formalized under a unified body, it will be about as meaningful as XBox Live rankings (Struggled Through 'Atlas Shrugged': Achievement Unlocked!)
Alterother, Oct 01 2012
  

       I heard recounted the story of a chap who could have worn a chestload of the things but dodged public notice by only wearing one: the rather understated crimson ribbon bar of the Victoria Cross.   

       I imagine things with the import of the Harry Potter series would have a medal at the back of each book.
FlyingToaster, Oct 01 2012
  

       Managers would hate and fear this …   

       Consider a meeting between two groups from different companies. Each group, despite deep misgivings, has felt obliged to include a geek to provide technical support.   

       Just prior to the meeting, each side's geek recognises the other, examines the tin, and identifies areas of mutual interest. They then proceed to converse fully and openly about mutual problems without any concern about "commercial sensitivity", knowing that each is the Servant of a Higher Truth.   

       They then sit next to one another in the meeting and continue to covertly communicate using their data devices.   

       When asked for an opinion, they both give the same answer, which is in all likelyhood exactly what both sets of managers don't want to hear.   

       Hilarity ensues.
8th of 7, Oct 01 2012
  

       loveitloveitloveitlov eitloveitloveitloveitlo veitloveitloveitloveit
Voice, Oct 03 2012
  

       ^ don't be shy, tell us what you really think.   

       //HB ribbon// IMnsHO should list total numbers of posts, buns and bones.
FlyingToaster, Oct 03 2012
  

       <tic>   

       You elitist bastards. Why is it always about quantity? This isn't a competition!   

       <\tic>
Alterother, Oct 03 2012
  

       so you'd go with a simple "HB" monogram then.
FlyingToaster, Oct 03 2012
  

       all is vanity.
WcW, Oct 03 2012
  

       I'd say a simple croissant embroidered on a white ribbon with no monogram or further embellishment would be plenty elitist and simultaneously an egalitarian nod to those of us who prefer ideas of quality and insightful discourse over simply putting up high scores.
Alterother, Oct 03 2012
  

       ... faint smell of sour grapes in here ...
8th of 7, Oct 03 2012
  

       Isn't this the *real* purpose of pocket protectors???   

       I think this might be semi-baked. When Windows 7 came out my employer required that I complete Microsoft's online training and still have my Win7 Expert pin that proves I did.   

       (Actually, I received 2 pins but I have never worn either, at least not out in public!)
Canuck, Oct 05 2012
  

       That makes me think of the 'certificate(s) of achievement' I received at the end of various training courses when I worked in heavy industry. I always wondered why we were given a meaningless quasi-award for learning how to use a crane or work in confined spaces.
Alterother, Oct 05 2012
  

       ' Geeks or nerds would wear standardized ribbons to prove that they majored in engineering or physics, read certain books such as On the Origin of Species or The Republic, or participated in lab research'.   

       Doing such things used to mean that you were averagely-intelligent and academic.   

       *sigh*
Phrontistery, Oct 06 2012
  

       I could at least get behind some kind of insignia that denotes one's higher education. For instance, in Nordic countries, people who complete a PhD are allowed to wear the doctoral hat in lieu of a top hat with white tie. Finnish PhDs also have a doctoral sword. [Link]
Alx_xlA, Oct 08 2012
  
      
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