Open Source = Geek?

The parent of has decided to become Geeknet, Inc (how much did they have to pay for, I wonder). I have mixed feelings on this.  On one hand, I am trying to learn from Wil Wheaton and embrace my inner geek.  I have done this so well that my colleagues tell me my inner geek is leaking out quite a bit to my outer geek.  So celebrating geekdom is good, right?

Well, maybe not right.  I am involved in an operations research open source endeavor, COIN-OR.  Part of COIN-OR is convincing companies that open source is not too nerdy or experimental.  There are lots of good reasons to use open source software. Embracing your inner geek is probably not one of the more persuasive.  One vision of COIN-OR was to be “Sourceforge for operations research”.  Now should we become “Like operations research, only geekier?”.

The Sourceforge Blog has an amusing post on the top ten rejected names, including my favorite:

7. FLOSSdaily

I think the entry summarizes the issue correctly:

the consensus seems to be that, as long as we don’t change the name of, it doesn’t really matter what we call the corporation, so I think we’re good.

But I would be worried about the next “branding” idea from the good people at Geeknet, Inc.  Perhaps their inner geek should stay a little more … inside.

3 thoughts on “Open Source = Geek?”

  1. I would be willing to postulate the the brand “Geek” has never been so popular lately. Who is the most successful business icon of the day? A lot would answer Bill Gates. A lot of our daily vernacular is being attributed to geeky jargon. Electronic gadgets are a mainstream staple of peoples lives. And, of course, where are the most popular jobs going to lately. I would argue that it’s a good time to be a Geek.

  2. Open source rules. While it may be only for geeks, it is very useful to these geeks. There are even new open source pc games that are coming out.

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