The Curious Vocabulary of Computer Geeks

Vacab for computer geeks

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Wikepidia defines “geek” thusly: “The word geek is a slang term for odd or non-mainstream people, with different connotations ranging from “a computer expert or enthusiast” to “a person heavily interested in a hobby.”

But I would argue that being a geek is becoming more and more mainstream and less odd. We live in a time where we’re really all computer geeks to varying degrees. We all carry computers in our pockets like it’s no big deal. Heck, even our mother’s and grandmothers know how to use Facebook and Twitter. This is the age of geeks. So isn’t high time we learned to speak the language language? Here’s HostBaby’s geektastic list of re-dorkulous geek terms. Can you help us grow our list?

Leet Speak (also, L33t Sp34k)

L33t is a simple online language where you substitute vowels for the numbers that look similar. So an e is 3; An i or L is 1; and so on.  Pr3tty 34sy r1ght?

N00b

Basically just a geeky way of calling someone a “newbie.”  AKA: Someone who is trying something for the first time.

Frak

Popularized by the 2003-2009 version of the TV program Battlestar Galactica. “Frak” is a substitute for another four letter swear word you may be more familiar with.

Pwned

It can be pronounced as “owned” or as “poned.”  Originally a gamer term, it has been seeping into popular culture. Basically pwned means “to be controlled against your will”, or “to be defeated by a superior power.” More info here

BitMonkey

Derived from the car mechanic’s pet name “Grease Monkey,” a Bitmonkey is someone who works in coding or building computers. Codemonkey is also a commonly used geeky term.

Manga

Japanese-inspired graphic novels

Macro

Macro has multiple uses, but geeks refer to a macro as a way to program a computer command with 1 key or button push.

Cthulhu

A fictional monster created by H.P Lovecraft in his book The Call of Cthulhu in 1919. Cthulhu is described as “A thing too horrible to describe.”

Popular Geeky Acronyms

TMI

Too Much Information. As in: “TMI, dude! I didn’t need to know that.”

ROFLMAO

Rolling on Floor Laughing My Ass Off. Pronounced: roffle-mau.

AFK

Away From Keyboard

AFAIK

As far as I know.

FUBAR

F*** Up Beyond all Repair/Reason/Recognition. Originally a military term, geeks use FUBAR when things get REALLY messed up.

WTF?

What the F***? As in: “WTF? Why is there peanut butter all over my iPad?”

Got any good geek terms we can add to the list? Let us know in the comments!

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3 comments to The Curious Vocabulary of Computer Geeks

  • Thanks. I read about how that originated in the military when I was doing my Geeky research.

    Repair, reason, and recognition are all common interpretations. “Repair” seems to fit the geeky crowd better.

    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=fubar

  • Kray

    Emacs and LISP for teh win! :-)

  • Jim Bob

    As a computer nerd myself, I can fully guarantee that the use of these words will not make you look like a computer geek. In fact, half of these statements are far outdated. They will do nothing but make you look like you’re trying too hard, and failing at it, on a level bordering sad.

    No one uses “l33t speak” anymore, it doesn’t happen. Using this in a serious tone will make you appear out of touch, as it hasn’t been used seriously, and even very rarely jokingly, since the early 2000’s. N00b, noob, newbie, etc. This one has been main stream for a while now and is by no means exclusive to geeks. Frak, I’ll give you that one, though it’s only used by sci-fi geeks. No one uses pwned anymore unless they’re trying to seem ironic. That is one use for Macro, though that’s not the only use for it. The others are more fringe subcultures than geeky phrases.

    The Acronym list is not geeky, anyone who’s under the age of 35 and has used the internet knows any of those. The only exception would be FUBAR, I’ll give you that one.

    I’m sorry, but if you’re not really a geek, then don’t try to talk like one. Talk the way you talk, be real. Otherwise you come across as fake, and that’s just sad.

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