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23Mar/120

TopGeek 2.0

Australia's second largest DSL broadband provider, iiNet, has announced the return of the TopGeek competition. I entered the iiNet TopGeek competition last year and after several rigorous geeky challenges, where I invented an iPhone app and turned my friends into zombies, I leveled up and made it into the top ten before I took an arrow in the knee, resulting in game over. In the end there could only be one Top Geek, that honour went to Cassandra James, a talented comic book artist from Tasmania.
Top Geek

TopGeek 2.0 follows last year's highly successful inaugural contest, and will once again see geeks of all types show off their geeky prowess in an attempt to take out the title of Australia's next TopGeek. The winner will also score an all-expenses paid trip to attend one of four geeky events - including ComicCon, Consumer Electronic Show, South by Southwest or Penny Arcade Expo. Last year's winner will head to San Diego in July for ComicCon 2012. She'll report back to TopGeek HQ with all the comic news and make you wish you were there, and you could be, if you enter TopGeek!

I won't be entering the TopGeek 2.0 competition this year, instead, I shall be judging it along with last years finalists, Andy Wells, Jason Cartwright, Jess Watson and Cassandra James.

This year the competition encourages everyone to discover their inner geek and embrace it, as geeks come in all varieties. The iiNet crew behind TopGeek has introduced multiple categories - including art, tech, fandom, gamer and internet - bigger and better challenges, TopGeek TV and runner-up prizes. I'm looking forward to TopGeek TV, a fortnightly series hosted by award-winning comedian and self-proclaimed geek, Lawrence Leung. The series will take a closer look at the nerdy stories behind the competition and the geeky finalists.

As a Fandom category judge, I'm looking forward to seeing the creative and geeky entries. I'll be picking contestants to go through to the next round, show off their unique geeky talents, and compete in knockout challenges before battling it out during an epic final event on May 10th, 2012. The last geek standing will be crowned Australia’s ultimate TopGeek and winner. I'm looking for something that sets the contestants apart from the cookie-cutter-hipster-geek-is-cool-now type of geek - contributing to an open source project, running a meet-up or group, designing or developing a website from scratch, building your own robot butler, learning for fun not profit, amassing thousands of online followers, designing you own costumes, changing the world and thinking outside of the box. Pro tip: You don't just watch/play/read/collect [insert whatever geeky interest here] you live and breathe it, you're THE BIGGEST FAN and have amassed your own army of fans for your aforementioned fandom. Your profile should describe your geeky attributes and make me want to see more of you. Last years top twenty set the bar pretty high.

The search to find the Australia's most talented geek is currently taking submissions. If you're a geek (or you know a worthy geeky) head the the iiNet TopGeek 2.0 website. Good luck, geeks!

20Oct/114

The Big Geekend 2011

I've finally recharged my batteries after participating in the Extra Life 24 hour gaming marathon for kids charity this weekend. Extra Life is a charity started by the Sarcastic Gamer podcast network in 2008 to raise money and awareness for cancer research for the Children's Miracle Network. Money raised is donated to any of the hospitals that are part of the Children's Miracle Network in the US, Canada, UK and Australia. I was part if team Big Geekend and our local Children's Miracle Network Hospital is Westmead Children's Hospital in Sydney.

Last year was crazy. We dared Antz to wear a dress, cracked an egg on Lab Mouse's face and cut off his pony tail for donations, we were filmed by crew making a documentary on gaming while sleep deprived, live streamed, played with night vision goggles at 4am, battled Satan's junk, gamed for 24 hours and raised over $700. Only four of us survived the night - Cuzza, Noodlez, Lab Mouse and myself - and won the game of staying awake. My key to survival was pixie sticks and Coke.

This year, team Big Geekend decided to raise the bar, we set our team goal at $1000 and I set my personal goal at $100. I'm happy to announce that we not only survived the 24 hour gaming marathon, but we beat our team goal of $1000 and I smashed my personal goal, raising over $430 for my team. Over $1,100,000 has been raised this year by Extra Life gaming teams worldwide!

Achievement unlocked: ONE MILLION DOLLARS.

I started off the gaming marathon playing Red Dead Redemption and Assassins Creed, then switched to GTA IV in an attempt to stay awake. It's been so long since I've played GTA IV on Xbox, I kept shooting instead of running and accidentally shot a cop on the corner not once, but twice. I also played a lot of Glitch, Wipeout, Nyan Cat: Lost In Space and attempted to build rockets in the Kerbal Space Program while sleep deprived. That Jebediah guy is crazy. He seems to always be pretty happy about the fact that I forgot to add a parachute, smiling while he's hurtling towards the earth, meanwhile Bill and Bob sit next to him wearing space nappies because they're currently crapping their pants.

There were some silly moments, like when I thought I lost my glasses and they were on my face the whole time, ambulance joy rides on the beach or when I kept bending over to change Xbox games, forgetting that the live stream web camera was in front of me and flashing the internet my boobs. The lowlight for me was at 2am during a snacks and drinks run, I hoped out of a friends car and proceeded to walk into a tree branch, scrapping my head and creating a nice red bump. Walking into trees when you're trying to stay awake for 24 hours is not recommended.

There are no 1UP's in real life.

I want to thank all of you who stalked us on the live streams, shared and re-tweeted the donation links and a big warm cyber hug to those who donated. I'm proud to have been a part of this years event, thank you all so very much. Donations are still open, so if you have a few dollars to spare, please donate.

Can't wait for next year, how does a goal of $3000 sound? Game on!

5Jan/0817

Sexiest Geek

According to Wired's third annual Sexiest Geeks list, I am one of 2007's sexiest geeks.

Sexy Geek

I'm unsure what one is meant to say when they receive such a prestigious and esteemed nomination.

Every year, Wired nominates the smartest, sexiest and most Wired men and women of the year. I'm up there with the sexy greats; Danica McKellar, Kary Byron, Amber MacArthur, Kary Byron (her clone), Morgan Webb, Olivia Munn, Leah Culver, Veronica Belmont, Felicia Day, Leah Culver (another clone), Kristen Bell, Alyson Hannigan and Joss Whedon. Who sadly seems to be the last man standing in the top-rated list. Whedon must possess some awesome fanboy powers or have hundreds of monkeys to do his evil biddings.

And then there is me, somewhere in the middle of it all, with 830 positive and 476 negative votes. Accompanying my photo is a short description which claims that I possess "mad CSS skillz" and that I enjoy playing WoW. Mad CSS skillz, that is such a nice thing for you to say... I mean, my code is really depreciated. I know, I've been wanting to release my re-design into the wild, but I'm trying to overachieve with it, do something amazing, which is a bit like trying to bend a spoon with your mind when you have no mind to bend it wit... Wait a minute.

Since when do I play WoW?

I'm pretty sure I have never played World of Warcraft, as I prefer FPS over MMORPG's. So unless my WoW playing friends have drugged and kidnapped me for the horde or someone is posing as me on WoW (which would be a new level of weird that has yet to be achieved by my fakers/posers), I'm pretty sure I have never played WoW.

Does this mean you were lying about the "mad CSS skillz" too?

Update...

I have been cloned. There are now two of me present on Wired's Sexiest Geeks of 2007 list. Can you pick which one is the cyborg?

Sexy Geek