Nerd Alert

Attention Nerds: The World’s Largest Videogame Collection Is Up For Auction

You could have more videogames than THIS. (Wikimedia Commons)

A Buffalo man is auctioning off the holy grail of nerd-dom: the world’s largest videogame collection. If you want it to be yours, be prepared to shell out a cool $50,000 — at the very least.

Michael Thomasson has amassed the collection, which features over 11,000 games and 100 different consoles, over the past 20 years, ArsTechnica reports. He says he buys one to two games per day, and spends around $3,000 per year updating the collection. Guinness has certified Mr. Thomasson’s videogame collection as the largest in the world. Read More

Planet Reddit

Neckbeard Support Group Thrives on Reddit Front Page

The South Park episode that changed one former neckbeard's life. (Screengrab: YouTube)

Redditor thewriter_anonymous posed two simple questions yesterday to the Reddit community: “Ex-neckbeards of reddit, when did you realize you were one of “those” guys? Any cringeworthy stories you’d like to share?”

For clarification, he also posted an Urban Dictionary definition of “neckbeard” — “a talkative, self-important nerdy man who, through an inability to properly decode social cues, mistakes others’ strained tolerance of his blather for evidence of his own charm.” Read More

Studs R Us

News Flash: Tech Is Not Just For Scrawny Male Virgins Anymore

Who you callin nerd (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

There’s a new trend in tech, and it’s got nothing to do with Google Glass or nepotism. It’s called being hot, and it might just sweep the nation.

“Picture a technology whiz kid,” Callum Borchers implores in his trend piece about non geeky tech guys from yesterday’s Boston Globe. He guesses you’re picturing someone with “an unhealthy pallor, sloppy looks, and a body misshaped by diet of pizza and Red Bull,” which, to be fair, describes a vast cross section of the male millennial population, not just the coders.

But one millennial tech guy, Andrew Bachman, isn’t like that. A veritable “buff specimen,” he is “more jock than geek,” he has a “sculpted torso,” and he “seems to be always working out, even squeezing in a set of pushups at his desk”–casually, we hope, during his interview with the GlobeRead More

Nerd Alert

Hey History Nerds: Turn Foursquare Into an Orgy of Vintage Photos

(Photo: Foursquare)

Good news for history nerds/hipsters who really identify with Luc Sante’s Low Life: The New York Public Library has released a snazzy new app that’ll show you cool historical photos when you check in on Foursquare. Pack your bags, because we’re going on a nostalgia trip.

The app draws on the NYPL’s Photographic Views of New York City collection, a huge cache of photos from the 1870s to the 1970s meant to “document the changing face” of the city. During a recent hackathon, a team rigged them up to Foursquare and its geolocation data. Read More

Love in the Time of Algorithms

Hope Is Alive! Math Nerd Who Wrote Paper Analyzing Why He Didn’t Have a Girlfriend Just Got Married

Mr. Backus (Photo: Facebook)

British math genius Peter Backus was pretty convinced he was going to be alone forever. He didn’t presume this because of the number of cats he owned or because he seemed genuinely comfortable eating out at restaurants by himself. Instead, he wrote a paper (PDF) where he applied the Drake equation, a “probabilistic argument used to estimate the number of active, communicative extraterrestrial civilizations in the Milky Way galaxy,” to discern what exactly his chances of finding love were. Turns out, they weren’t so hot. Read More

In Hindsight

The Best of Betabeat: A 2012 Retrospective

BETA BEAT Celebrates The Pitch Series

As 2011 came to a close, we looked back at our most popular posts. But this year, we’re a little older (a mature year and nine months!), a lot wiser, and thought we’d try something a little different. Thank you for reading!


Ultra-Orthodox Jews Take a Hard Line on the Internet at Rally of 40,000 Men (And Me) In which our intrepid reporter sneaks into Citi Field in drag. 

Faith, Hope, and Singularity: Entering the Matrix with New York’s Futurist Set It’s the end of the world as we know it, and they feel fine. Read More

Geek Chic

Russian AntiVirus Maker Wants to Make You Batman For a Day

But first, don't forget to download all your patches! (Photo: CinemaBlend)

This week, in questionable partnerships: The antivirus makers at Kaspersky Labs have teamed up with The Dark Knight Rises for “The People of Gotham City Sweepstakes.” The winner gets to be Batman for a day (though without the onerous crime-fighting responsibilities), because why not?

If the name Kaspersky Labs sounds familiar, that’s probably because it’s the company that figured out the connection between the Flame and Stuxnet viruses.

The contest posits that the villainous Bane has unleashed a devastating computer virus on Gotham, and humbler Interneters like yourself must fight back, by entering this contest. We’re envisioning a frustrated Batman, suited up to bash heads but instead peering over the shoulder of a computer technician, which just sounds thrilling.

In a statement released yesterday, founder and CEO Eugene Kaspersky sounded really, really excited about this contest and about The Dark Knight Rises in general: Read More


7 Famous Techies We Suspect are Living Out Their Childhood Dreams

6 Photos

Jeff Bezos

Obviously, the best thing about joining the ranks of the fabulously wealthy and successful is the freedom to do whatever you want. For some people, this might mean racing sports cars and popping bottles with models. (Fair enough, Eduardo.) Maybe you’d like to move into venture capital. (That sounds lovely, Marc.)

But a select few think a little bigger and get a little crazier. In fact, we’re starting to wonder whether they’re executing on plans they’ve had since they were 13, because their current lives are exactly what a 13-year-old boy would dream up if he were asked to imagine being a billionaire.

There are seven guys (yes, they’re all dudes) that we’ve got in mind.