Get your thick rimmed glasses positioned comfortably for a very personal insight into what brings out our inner geek. Feel free to share your thoughts with us on Twitter. Until next week, live long and prosper, unlike Dobby (still sad about that).
For me, it is all about old-school technology: van der Graaf generators, mechanical calculators and slide rules. And don’t forget non-Newtonian fluids.
It’s a full-scale replica of an X-wing fighter made entirely of Lego bricks. Yes, that’s right. An X-wing. A life-size X-wing. Made of Lego.
It’s 11 feet tall with a wingspan of 43 feet and is an exact 42-times scale model of the same kit you can buy here. Apparently it’s made up of more than 5.3 million bricks, weighs nearly 46,000 pounds (that’s 20+ tons) and took 17,336 hours (that’s four months) to build. Time well spent.
That moment when I realised that I wish Chris Anderson was my dad. Because he totally 3D prints toys to order for his kids. How cool is that? I can tell you…that is pretty cool. Everyone on the team now shares any 3D printing-related news with me as standard, and I’m not complaining.
Those who know me will find it odd I adore the whimsical, arrogant Doctor. Just like they would find it odd if I were sarcastic. I know Doctor Who is a children’s programme. So what?! Harry Potter, too, was created for children. Like Harry Potter it shares a very important quality that adult stories don’t tend to; it excites the naïve dreams of our inner child.
I know that this troubled protagonist is as much a reality as the worlds he visits or the aliens he battles. For an hour a week though, I can forget that. I can turn off the logical bit of my brain and indulge my imagination.
To impersonate Yoda I love hmm…hmm… but as you can tell from my meager impression I still have a long way to go. Ever since my father introduced me to the world of Star Wars and the Jedi Master himself, I have been obsessed with perfecting my Yoda voice. Some may say a little too obsessed. But thanks to the wonders of mobile app technology I no longer need to spend countless hours practicing my ‘hmmms’ and Yoda-esque sentences. I can now rely on apps like Yoda Speak and Yoda Says to do the work for me – leaving more time for me to start practicing my Darth Vader voice. In the words of Yoda himself: “Do or do not…there is no try.”
I’ve been to data centres, seen unified communications demos, and marvelled at microprocessor architectures. But I’ve never seen a Lorch machine for fillpower testing in action… Hang on, the what?
Remember puffa jackets that were all the rage in the early 90s? They have a highly technical, adventurous cousin – the down jacket. Owning five or six of them, along with no fewer than five down sleeping bags, you could say I’m obsessed. There’s just something mesmerising about their ability to loft up from nothing. And so back to our Lorch machine, which establishes the volume which a measured weight of down will fill. Geeks like myself can spend hours comparing a product’s “down fill power” and measuring every gram/metre of fabric weight. As far as geekery goes, I’ll concede – it’s niche. Maybe we should actually spend more time going outside and actually climbing something.
When trying to rack my brain for the special geeky thing that I love, I almost missed the huge part of my life that is my (not-so secret) love of sci-fi. I’m not quite Comic Con level (though I do have a mug saying Mrs Archer on it and have been known to be a fan of fancy dress parties), but if there’s a new sci-fi series/film/book out there, I’ve probably watched/read/learnt all the quotes from it. I blame my parents who gave me the original Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy tapes of the radio play (properly old school). From there I progressed to the TV series, books (all 5 or so of them) and more recently, the film version. Arthur Dent and his towel opened up a whole new world of possibilities. Now all I need is to find me a two-headed alien who’s president of the galaxy…