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Do Geeks Make Better Adults? 335

mcgrew writes "What makes people unpopular in the hallways of high school, mainly an unwillingness to conform, tends to translate into success as an adult. Robbins lists several companies—including Yahoo!—that prioritize hiring quirky individuals who shun conventional thinking. She also name-checks historical and current celebrities, including director Steven Spielberg (who was taunted for being Jewish in high school) and Lady Gaga (a self-described former theater 'freak'), whose weirdness led to later fame. (Other now-validated former outsiders she touts: Steve Jobs, Taylor Swift, Bruce Springsteen and Angelina Jolie.)"
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Do Geeks Make Better Adults?

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  • by Bozzio ( 183974 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @11:44AM (#36094588)


    Correlation != Causation.


    • by 0100010001010011 ( 652467 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @11:55AM (#36094788)

      Timothy McVeigh: "McVeigh claimed to have been a target of bullying at school and that he took refuge in a fantasy world where he retaliated against those bullies." "While in high school, McVeigh became interested in computers and hacked into government computer systems on his Commodore 64"
      David Koresh: "Due to his poor study skills, he was put in special education classes and nicknamed "Vernie" by his fellow students, but by the age of 11, he had memorized the entire New Testament."

    • by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:16PM (#36095136) Homepage Journal

      Agreed. But, there isn't even a real correlation here.

      "Robbins lists several companies—including Yahoo!—that prioritize hiring quirky individuals"

      That is NOT a widespread practice. Most companies want - most companies DEMAND that you show up for work, do your job, and mostly go unnoticed. They don't want quirks. Author found a niche market for geeks with quirks, and he thinks that he has discovered something really noteworthy. Phhht.

      • by bipbop ( 1144919 )
        I assure you, Yahoo! is one of those companies, despite what "Robbins lists".
      • The other thing is the premise ignores that successful individuals might have other additional traits that made successful. For instance, Lady Gaga probably wouldn't have gone very far if she couldn't sing and dance. For all her weirdness, she seems to be very deliberate and calculating in her actions. I'm not a fan but I did see her interview on 60 Minutes and it showed a young woman who understood the business.
      • Most companies want - most companies DEMAND that you show up for work, do your job, and mostly go unnoticed. They don't want quirks.

        Besides, for every success there are many that failed. People that don't conform are just another means to succeed. It is a gamble. If it works, great, but more likely than not, it won't work. Companies do want that sort of person, but they won't throw their entire budget at hiring them. They'll gamble in small doses.

      • No kidding.

        I recently started a new job and the first thing my superior took good care to notify me of was that I have to be there at 9. And even the most catastrophic security report I deliver goes with a nod and a shrug. I dunno, but somehow, in my books, I'd say the priorities are a bit ... off.

        Then there's the other extreme, I worked in a company where nobody gave a shit when I came or went, as long as I don't wear a shirt and a tie 'cause nobody takes a techie serious in a suit. I guess it was the firs

      • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

        ...yeah and most of those companies are the sort where you wonder how they possibly manage to get anything done or produce anything useful.

        Quite often, they end up ultimately dependent on corporate welfare and bailouts to keep from imploding under their own weight.

      • by blair1q ( 305137 )

        You missed a more important point:

        Yahoo! is a shit company that makes a shit product.

    • As far as hiring decisions go it makes perfect sense. One of the most dangerous things a project can fall into is groupthink, believing this as a group that no individual would have believed on their own. Ask a group of developers how long a project will take and they'll talk about it and come up with a number, but if you ask each developer individually it's entirely possible that no single person will come up with the same number; that's normal. Groupthink is when no individual developer comes up with a

    • However, this was not an article about a scientific study, this was more or less a book review. The article reported the book as essentially a ego boosting book for teenage geeks. While not a thorough scientific study, sometimes there is a place even for the most analytical of thinkers for a mood boost.
    • by shmlco ( 594907 )

      "Correlation != Causation"

      Precisely. How many people "unpopular in the hallways of high school" did NOT turn out so well?

      It's the same article as the one that points to Bill Gates and Steve Jobs as super-successful college dropouts... with the inherent implication that you too could be just as successful if *you* dropped out of college and tried to start your own computer company in your garage.

      And what's the number of people who *were* popular who turned out to be successful?

      I bet that success rate is high

    • ahem.

      Correlation != Causation.


      Also "famous/success as an adult" != "better adult"

    • I was a non-conformist in HS. Hated the jocks (even though I played football, nothing more conformist than football players at a Catholic school), but hated the little overachieving geeks as well, many of whom were even more aloof and self-satisfied than the jocks.

      Ironic that a geek Website can only see in binary terms: conformist or geek. There are other categories, and BTW, Wozniak was the geek. Jobs was a visionary who couldn't code "hello world!". Apple needed both to succeed.
  • I'll let you know when I grow up. However right now, I believe the original premise is stupid.
    • by Kelbear ( 870538 )

      I have doubts about how my differences might predispose me towards being "a success", particularly in environments where career advancement hinges upon socialization. I'm friendly, but I'm just too different from them to make the same easy connections that they can make with each other.

      However, I do know that I love who I am(and so does my wife), and I wouldn't want to give up my differences just so I can be more like the mean.

      • "However, I do know that I love who I am"

        Spot on. I can be characterized in a lot of ways, some complimentary, some not. But, I am what I am, and I like it. To hell with anyone who doesn't like it, LMAO!

        • "He doesn't like you."

          "I don't like you either. You just watch yourself. We're wanted men. I have the death sentence on twelve systems.
  • by TaoPhoenix ( 980487 ) <> on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @11:46AM (#36094626) Journal

    If you're only a class-c geek with an unwillingness to conform but without a layer of pizazz to roll it all together, you end up too unstable for a business to hire you, so you end up at fast food or retail with some gaming at night and weekends and the random day you skipped work to go on a raid/campaign.

    That's the life to have ... up to about age 25, then it starts to crash hard.

    • Oh noes, the corporate machines won't hire me.

      you end up too free-spirited for a business to hire you,

      There, fixed that for you.

      Government schools train people to be cogs for the machine (ref: John Taylor Gatto []. "The Seven Lesson Schoolteacher" essay is also very good, and is on any number of sites). Some people rebel against being slotted into a position in life (the group you refer to who "crash hard" at age 25), while others recognize the game and make their own rules.

      One must "learn the rules" in order to avoid the cog/machine outcome in their life. Gatto's

      • Expenses 1 Gatto 0.

        Ordinary Rebels have trouble coming up with the $6000 to dig out of the flood expenses that show up at the worst possible time all at once when the hand-me-down car blows a head gasket, First-Last-Deposit on a new apartment, and a grand in medical that a sleazy insurance company won't cover.

      • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:14PM (#36095114)

        >Government schools train people to be cogs for the machine

        School, like anything in life, is what you make of it. Its not exactly a North Korean indoctrination facility, regardless of how often conservative pundits say they are.

        The GP makes a good point. Too many "geeks" become asocial nerds unable to work effectively with others or understand basic social skills. This isn't some kind of free-wheeling "I'm running a startup" mentality, but the often seen smart-guy or smart-gal that is unable to motivate themselves or move up Maslow's pyramid to self-esteem or self-actualization and they become self-loathing WoW addicts or smelly neckbeards.

        • >>>Too many "geeks" become asocial nerds unable to work effectively with others

          I'd probably have jumped off a building by now, if the internet did not exist. Engineering pays very well, but is horribly boring. Fortunately the net allows me to stream radio, music, college lectures, books-on-tape, and even TV shows to shove the boredom aside.

          I've accepted my life as a "cog" because I can spend the day distracting myself with entertainment. But if this was the year 1990, pre-internet, I'd probably

          • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @02:31PM (#36097128)

            Pardon me if I'm skeptical over the whole "ZOMG ID KILL MYSELF WITHOUT THE INTERNET!!"

            Us older geeks know this isn't true. We did things you might recognize like read books or even socialize with our coworkers! We read magazine and wrote stories and played D&D and programmed non-network computers.

            If anything, the "always on entertainment" pipe means less creative works, geek socializing, etc because we're forever stuck on this depressing loop of "Hey someone just sent me another video of someone getting kicked in the balls." Or "Hey, here's the outrage of the hour!"

            Its not too surprising, it turns out that more entertainment channels and more uncritical viewers just leads us deeper in the lowest common denominator ghetto. Worse, always on information can just as likely be always on disinformation thus you have all these people who suddenly think they're political experts because they know the well-developed talking points over whether the president is really a citizen. But I digress.

            I think the truly nerdy have larger issues, its not really a choice for them to go home and become smelly shut-ins, they do this because they cant function in any other way. They might suffer from aspergers, depression, social anxiety, childhood abuse, anger issues, hormonal issues, etc.

    • Exactly. Just because you're "odd" or "non-conformist" doesn't mean you'll automatically be successful. My list of friends from HS would probably be in the "unpopular" column, and thier success ranges from doing well to unemployed. Also, generally success comes with the application of some level of social skills, so the isolated loner is probably a unlikely to see fame or fortune unless they're a good novelist or marksman.

    • If you're only a class-c geek

      WTF is a "class-c" geek? Is there some designation hierarchy I'm unaware of?

      I've been a geek for almost my entire life, and I have no idea what you're talking about.

      • by vlm ( 69642 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:21PM (#36095206)

        If you're only a class-c geek

        WTF is a "class-c" geek? Is there some designation hierarchy I'm unaware of?

        I've been a geek for almost my entire life, and I have no idea what you're talking about.

        C doesn't have classes. He meant to write "C++ geek" or something like that.

      • "WTF is a "class-c" geek? Is there some designation hierarchy I'm unaware of?
        I've been a geek for almost my entire life, and I have no idea what you're talking about."

        It's the whole "Geek-Nerd spectrum". It's (at least) two dimensional. One direction is the attitude. The other is Da Skillz. It ranges from "mildly obsesses with spelling on slashdot and can fix stuck cd drives with paperclips" to CmdrTaco and Randall Munroe of xkcd. If you're just a rebel but don't have an awesome concept that pays the bills,

      • He is referring to type C personalities:

        A is a leader/alpha ape, B is a social butterfly, and C is the overly serious obsessed with details type.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        WTF is a "class-c" geek? Is there some designation hierarchy I'm unaware of?

        A class-c geek has a 24 bit netmask.

    • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

      Or you go work for a small business, never become a millionaire but make about the same as the USA median income. Then you get a wife and do the normal thing, all without the headache of working at some soul-sucking giant corporation.

      • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:23PM (#36095250)

        Or you bust your ass with some small business, suffer, and fall into deep debt. That's much more likely than "becoming a millionaire." Its kinda sad how many people live their lives on the assumption that great wealth is just a couple different decisions away.

        I have a side-business running, I've worked for myself, but I never, ever went on with a "SCREW THE MAN, I'LL BE RICH SOON" because it so fucking improbable I'm not going to embarrass myself by assuming its going to come true. Its the business equivalent of the kid who goes to art school, acts all snobby because he know that in a year or two he'll be rich and famous. That's a losing attitude both in art and business.

        Unfortunately, the "success is around the corner with no hard work or compromise" is used politically to advance the agenda of billioanres who feed you this myth and tell you "when you're rich like us, you'll be glad you have a low tax burden and that social services are underfunded."

        • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

          Why would you fall into debt?
          You work for them and just take a couple grand less than a corporate job will pay. I am not suggesting starting your own small business.

          I will never be rich, nor is it even a goal. I just want to do what I love and get paid for it. I save as much as I can and because of that when an unanticipated cost occurs it does not hurt too much. I buy cars in cash and never buy brand new ones. I have liability coverage only and keep enough cash in the bank to replace my car if I wreck it.

          • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

            The far better question is why is he fixating on the "millionaire" thing when it is something that you didn't even bring up. It's a total red herring.

            Most people don't become millionaires. This is especially true for the corporate drones that the other guy seems to want to elevate so much.

            If anyone is perpetrating the "billionaire propaganda" it's that other guy.

  • ..does being taunted for being jewish qualify you as being a geek? I know more than a few jewish individuals that are not geeks, more just nebbish.
    • Huh? What about Ryan Braun, the Hebrew Hammer. Or Sandy Koufax. Or Steve Stone. Or Gabe Carimi.

      Being Jewish no more qualifies someone to be a geek than having brown hair.

  • Unwillingness? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ratnerstar ( 609443 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @11:48AM (#36094672) Homepage

    I was unpopular in High School, but I question whether that was because I was unwilling to conform, or because I had absolutely no idea how to do so.

    Spielberg, I imagine, was in a similar position, unless he discovered a method of magically becoming a goy.

    • by PPH ( 736903 )

      I'm not sure whether I was 'popular' or not. Practically everyone knew me. I got along with almost everyone. But I didn't give a shit if my behavior met with everyone's approval. I had too many interests that didn't mesh with any particular social group so I couldn't be bothered when some people whined about my not hanging out with the gang.

      Too many people expend too much energy trying to fit into a slot in the social order. And once they have achieved their position, they don't dare stepping out of it, in

    • by vlm ( 69642 )

      I was unpopular in High School, but I question whether that was because I was unwilling to conform, or because I had absolutely no idea how to do so.

      Too binary. My choice was simply to not care about high school beyond academics. Before illegal aliens and the economic collapse, a teenage kid could pretty easily get a job, so my social group was partly my coworkers. Also all the kids in my city that were 'pre-military' hung out together, regardless of artificial "school rivalry", so another part of my social group was kids who mostly went to other high schools. Then the non-age segregated social activities like ham radio club and on the radio nets an

    • I think you just hit the nail on the head. At the time I would gladly have given up being the individualistic weird kid, if I knew how. Looking back, though, I'm glad I didn't "fit in" too much better than I did.

    • Re:Unwillingness? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by tooyoung ( 853621 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @01:21PM (#36096086)
      The author makes an odd (yet common) assumption:

      What makes people unpopular in the hallways of high school, mainly an unwillingness to conform

      This is the typical view, "everyone else is a sheep except for me". Looking back at high school, I wouldn't say that popular people were popular because they conformed. Many were popular because they didn't conform. Others conformed to them. I don't think that these followers were necessarily popular because they conformed to the popular kids. Some were viewed as posers, while others were popular, because, well, they were likable.

      That is the trick with popularity - either you have it or you don't. People will like you and want to be around you, or they won't. That will change depending on your setting - middle school, high school, college, work, music industry, actor, etc. When people try to be liked or try to be cool, they typically fail.

      The lazy response is to classify all people not like you as sheep.

  • by alta ( 1263 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @11:48AM (#36094676) Homepage Journal

    How many non-geeks are also wildly famous.

    How many former geeks are now terrorists or serial killers?

    Come to me when you have some numbers.

    This is not to say I don't agree with the trend... but don't sell it like someone's done some quantitative research.

    • Indeed, pulling a few big names doesn't do much. I'd be willing to bet if you take samples from the NFL and NBA, a very large number of them were steriotypical jocks in their teens, and now they are making millions. What does that say about jocks and success, absolutely nothing. Vin diesel played D&D growing up, so I'm going to equate D&D to becoming a muscular tough movie star, after all it happened once to one person so it must always be true.
    • by gosand ( 234100 )

      And since when does being famous mean "better"? It just means.. famous. People are famous for lots of reasons, good and bad.

      I think maybe we need to stop trying to prove "Geeks aren't all bad" and just live our lives. It's less like "Revenge of the Nerds" nowadays.

  • People famous in creative fields are sometimes "quirky". Who would have thunk it.

    People who do well running tech companies are sometimes "geeks" who like tech. Who would have thunk it.

    • And ... the vacuous, shallow socializing of school children don't always equate to valuable life skills. Who would have thunk it?

      Though, from the sounds of it, they come in handy if you're a teacher. :-P

      I wonder if there are other occupations which still carry forward the high-school level of mentality for this kind of thing.

  • He said he does it intentionally to maintain a creative and highly diverse staff.
    • by hoggoth ( 414195 )

      "A client is coming in for a meeting, clean that role-playing shit off the conference table. Someone call Fred and tell him to get his ass into the office. I don't care how late he stayed up. John, here's a razor. You have 10 minutes to shave that monkey-tail off your face before the client gets here. JOE PUT SOME DAMN PANTS ON!"

  • First, the "process is killing my creativity" whining and now this "I'm not weird I'm special" self-aggrandizement. Here's the deal. Just like process *can* kill creativity doesn't mean that it will, so also the characteristics of a geek can also lead to success. They can also lead to suicide.

  • as I got older. I figured if I could not actually be a brilliant eccentric then at least I could behave like one and hope someone would fall for my ploy.
  • by krnpimpsta ( 906084 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:00PM (#36094866)
    Not saying the headline's claim is true or untrue, but... these are all examples of very rare individuals - the luckiest or the most skilled of all the geeks, that made it big.

    If you go by that argument, I can also point out that alot of the jocks from high school are now making many, many millions of dollars as professional athletes (NFL, NBA, etc.)

    Disclaimer: Didn't RTFA, but still, dumb argument.
    • And what's wrong with that? There's the "It Gets Better Project" for gay kids, so why not something similar for outcast geek kids? I had a relatively easy time of high school because I was fairly athletic and got along well with most of the "in" crowd, but we all know plenty of geeks who were picked on and belittled to the point of near-suicide. So back to my question: what's wrong with telling those kids that lots of young geeks do pretty damn well for themselves and that the rough years will pass?

      • Nothing wrong with giving geeks hope. Not sure how you inferred that from my comment.

        How about instead you show kids in every group, who all have their own problems and worries, that anyone can be wildly successful by being the best in any field, whether it is programming, basketball, or anything?
    • by Animats ( 122034 )

      If you go by that argument, I can also point out that alot (sic) of the jocks from high school are now making many, many millions of dollars as professional athletes (NFL, NBA, etc.)

      No, not "a lot". Very, very few. This is a common delusion among black youth, thinking they're going to make it big in sports. There are only 30 NBA teams, with 15 players each. Each team has only a few new hires each year, maybe 4. So that's 2.9 million high school graduates potentially competing for 120 jobs.

      Competent jocks in team sports tend to do well in life. They know how to perform on a team, and sometimes how to get a team to perform. That's a useful skill.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    "What makes people unpopular in the hallways of high school, mainly an unwillingness to conform..."

    Unwillingness to conform is NOT what makes people unpopular in highschool. In reality people are unpopular in highschool because they are physically unattractive, bad at sports, and have social anxiety problems of various kinds, in no particular order. "Unwillingness to conform" is a way nerds try to spin and justify their social anxiety. They frame it as if they could have chosen to be popular at any time

    • by mjwx ( 966435 )

      they are physically unattractive


      bad at sports,


      and have social anxiety problems of various kinds

      Sorry but three incorrect guesses.

      Unwillingness to conform

      I was a non conformist, in both my high schools. In my first school, people found out I had a good sense of humour (I.E. making jokes, not being them) after about 18 months, made the last 18 months there brilliant, despite the fact I sucked at sports and had social problems up the wazoo people simply stopped picking on me, I got along with most people even though I didn't conform and typically did better in class (I.E. some of them would blatantly copy my classwor

  • That's basically the crux of the question now, isn't it?

    What's a "better adult"?

    The whole think just sounds like a big circular reference kind of thing:
    - Geeks make "better adults" as per the definition of "better adult" that's most commonly held by geeks.

    Somehow I suspect that in the eyes of, say, born again christians, geeks do not make better adults.

    • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

      That is an interesting question isn't it. Is Lady Gaga a "better" adult than a good Kindergarten teacher?
      What is success anyway? Many studies have shown that making more money doesn't make you happier. There is a peak of curve of happyness that peaks right around the point where you make enough money to not sweat paying bills and then it goes down again.
      I think it is very ungeeky to say money==success or fame==success. Shouldn't happy==success.
      I am sure that there are a lot of happy geeks out there.
      BTW ther

  • Non-conformists show a higher tendency towards doing unique things. No shit. But then again, you have to have some sort of structure. I'm a great sysadmin and a decent programmer, and I'm a high-school dropout, never finished college, all that. But I truly regret not spending more attention to college when I was younger. Sure, I'd read all the books required to get a PhD in CS, but I never spent the time in class working through everything. So I didn't have that experience or grounding in my career, so I o

  • Biting the head off of a live chicken is a key component to functioning in society.

  • Maybe, but we do make better lovers...
  • ...write geekier narcisist headlines?
  • What are the units of conformity and success. I'd like to make a graph. Surely there must be an XKCD for that...

  • by michaelmalak ( 91262 ) <> on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:19PM (#36095190) Homepage

    The article draws a false dichotomy between geeks and bullies. The most successful adults in today's society combine intellect with emotional intelligence. The successful adult, today, is the one in high school who could make the jocks & cheerleaders and the nerds, alike, feel like a million bucks.

    And then there is the question of what constitutes success. Is it money? Is it number of progeny? Is it spiritual tranquility? Is it lack of hostile interactions? Strangely, the article seems to focus on this last one, whereas in centuries and millenia past, hostile interactions would have been seen as "success", assuming they were directed toward competitors for women and scarce resources.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What's more; There's absolutely nothing that says geeks can't be bullies. The intellectual bullying and elitist snobbery I witnessed when I first entered the workplace put a whole new perspective on the type of people I once physically stuck up for.

      Others do not typically class me as successful because I've refused to maintain employment in a corporate environment. I had a well paid job with a multinational and hated it. Working in a large corporate or becoming wealthy was never a life goal for me, that

      • by Americano ( 920576 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @01:48PM (#36096498)

        There's absolutely nothing that says geeks can't be bullies

        Interestingly, there's been some recent studies [] that bullies and victims often share many of the same traits:

        They found the typical bully has trouble with academics and resolving problems, has negative attitudes and comes from a family with conflict.

        A typical victim sounds surprisingly similar: he or she is likely to be aggressive, lacks social skills, thinks negative thoughts, has difficulty in problem-solving and comes from an environment of negativity. These youths are rejected and isolated, the research found.

        Strike "trouble with academics," and you've just described many geeks. It's not surprising that people in a group that tends to fit the profile of bullying victims also learned how to be bullies somewhere along the way. Now that there's no "dumb jock" to shove their head in the toilet, one of them gets to be big man on campus and shove some other poor nerd's head in the toilet.

  • Article fail. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by funkify ( 749441 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:32PM (#36095390)
    Quirky non-conformity is NOT the same as social retardation. From the way I see it, most "non-conformists" conform quite well to their smaller, alternative cliques.
    • by vlm ( 69642 )

      Quirky non-conformity is NOT the same as social retardation.

      From the way I see it, most "non-conformists" conform quite well to their smaller, alternative cliques.

      Then theres the even weirder concept of conforming to group norms that are the majority, but claim to be a small alternative clique. Think of teenagers who are all supposed to rebel against authority by conforming to the same cruddy clothing and music.

  • Something I try to explain to my kids -- if your way is actually better, then by all means don't conform. But sometimes conforming isn't following the herd so much as realizing that the way everyone else does something is actually the best way to do something.

    • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

      If your rationale for whatever you are doing ever includes the herd, then it's FULL OF FAIL.

      Whether or not doing your own thing corresponds to what the herd does (or not) should entirely be a matter of coincidence.

  • I would say it's hard to find geeks that don't conform to the things that make us geeks.

    This reminds me of all my "non-conformist" friends growing up who all skateboarded and wore plaid. All of them. They were so non-conformist that they all dressed the same way, had the same hobbies, and liked the same music.

    • They were so non-conformist that they all dressed the same way, had the same hobbies, and liked the same music.

      Brian: You're all individuals!
      Crowd: Yes, we're all individuals.
      Brian: You're all different!
      Crowd: Yes, we're all different.
      Man: I'm not!

  • Is professional success or fame the definition of a "good" adult?

    just sayin'.

  • FTA:

    Robbins followed seven self-described outsiders at public and private high schools for a year and concluded that what makes kids popular—conformity, aggression, visibility, and influence—won't make them happy or successful after they graduate.

    What!?!? I'll present a similar argument. See if you can spot the flaw: I observe that white bread gets moldy after I open the package. Therefore I conclude that wheat bread doesn't get moldy after I open the package. She followed the outsiders (self-described, no less ["Yeah I'm a nonconformist, nbd"]) to determine the fate of the non-outsiders. Wow.

  • I just yelled up the basement stairs and ask my mom if I was a good adult. She assured me I am.
  • sure, I can find 5 celebritys or super succesful people with any character trait you can name.
    but what about the 99% who are not successful ? (unlike lake wobegon, most people are not above avg, much less above the 99th percentile)
    The way to do this experiment is to measure say 1,000,000 million people for various character traits in High School, and then follow them for 40years
    you could also do it retrospectively, going back 40 years in time, ifyou could measure people from historical data
  • by geekoid ( 135745 ) <dadinportland&yahoo,com> on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @01:42PM (#36096394) Homepage Journal

    Fist off, you assume all those people are better adults because they are famous.
    That's just stupid.

    Second of all, there are millions of successful people who where just average kids.

    Is the high school nerd who takes out his repression anger on his children a better adult?

  • As far as quality is concerned, I think that a Geek's attention to detail does allow them to produce the best quality Adults.

    However, if sheer quantity is your aim, you can get a much better deal by lowering your standards a bit -- After all, even low quality humans taste pretty much the same (so long as they have functional kidneys). So I'd say whether you should get your adults from a Geek or just a run of the mill cultivator depends on what you're using the adults for: Entertainment or Food.

    Oh, you mean the humans themselves? Absolutely not, no, the "geeks" don't turn out to be good as Adults. You may be able to keep them distracted and complacent as children, but the "geek" variety are hard to integrate properly into a conformant (and fast breeding) populous.

    Geeks themselves tend to stand out and draw attention to the logical flaws in the environments we've built to contain them (especially the breeding program). The mere possibility that they'll reveal these truths to others and lead a revolt is enough to opt for the less intelligent variety when it comes to Adults.

    TL;DR: Geeks, while entertaining as children, are too cumbersome to keep as adults; They're too smart for their own good.

It seems that more and more mathematicians are using a new, high level language named "research student".