Angry self righteous tech-nerds

May 22, 2008
Posted in Editorial

I’ve been involved in the tech business for many years. Though technology is constantly changing, there is a constant:

Angry self righteous tech-nerds.

Who are the angry-nerds?

Angry-nerds are those programmers, network administrators or any other geeks that have a major chip on their shoulders.

Typically, they are in their twenties, with little experience, and are just out of school … full of academic dogma and ritual.

It takes little to set these guys off …

When confronted with a tech idea they don’t agree with, or they find that a concept (or way of doing things) is ‘below’ them intellectually .. they become arrogant, hostile and their not so inner nerd-child appears.

Generally these twits are useless to have around … besides being annoying.

Angry-nerds like to attack beginners

One behavior that is consistent in the angry-nerd population, is their collective disdain for those trying to learn a new technology. If that wasn’t strange enough, they are even critical of those who would try to help beginners get on their feet.


I think angry-nerds are just looking to bully people they feel they can bully. A little payback I suppose …?

The classic arguments that bring out the angry-nerds (frothing at the mouth), include:

  • Java vs. PHP
  • Mac vs. PC
  • Apache vs IIS

… and the list goes on.

Funny thing about angry-nerds, is that they tend to get angry only on message boards and chats. For some reason, angry nerds tend to be quiet introverts in real life.


What makes a nerd so angry?

It’s hard to say, but I think nerds become angry-nerds because of two things:

  1. Because the got picked on a lot in high school.
  2. Because they go on dates once every 3.5 years.

I think #2 alone can turn a harmless nerd, into an angry-nerd. That said, I also think memories of childhood beatings probably goes a long way to help the process.

My advice to angry-nerds:

Try not to be so angry, and maybe you’ll actually get a real date.

Stefan Mischook

7 Responses

  1. Tom Dana Author May 23, 2008 at 9:29 am

    What a good read, nicely written.
    You may not be too far from the truth.
    I like to pride myself on being able to communicate clearly and interact with the client, as well as tackle the technology. Arrogance is not good quality if you are trying to do business with other people, in fact, it is never a good quality.

  2. Jim Author May 24, 2008 at 2:51 pm

    You couldn’t be more right. And since I’m middle-aged, I think it increases their need to have their unprofessional and, dare I say, adolescent behavior to surface. I guess they haven’t figured out that snobby, I’m better than you attitude makes them look like idiots. And being the human that I am, I must admit; at times, I love it when they screw up.

    Sometimes I wonder how they ever get to keep their jobs. They need to be sent out to the public areas of the world from time to time to learn people skills.

  3. forsooth Author May 26, 2008 at 10:27 am

    Yep. As a learner is several areas, I often think 2 and 3 times about how I ask questions for fear of being haughtily dismissed by an “angry nerd” type.

    But responses don’t always take the form of outright anger or contempt…Sometimes the response is simply arrogant or dismissive.

    My opinion is that it is a gift to have the type of intelligence to grasp some of these difficult-to-learn technologies and concepts, i.e., to be a “nerd” (in the best sense). Since I do not have this particular gift, I appreciate the willingness of those who do to offer a bit of help now and again.

  4. Stefan Mischook Author June 7, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    I should point out that many angry-nerds are not as bright as think they are.

    When I wrote:

    “.. or they find a concept or way of doing things to be ‘below’ them intellectually ..”

    I was mocking their often faux intellect.


  5. Camilo Author June 10, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    Amen brother…!

  6. Sofia Author August 26, 2008 at 9:33 am

    You have nailed this article right on the proverbial head. Right down to their age-range too. It’s as though they feel they have finally found a way to be “superior” to others and feel the need to exploit it. Talk about a Napoleon Complex…

  7. gina Author October 24, 2008 at 5:50 am

    Heh, i’d been searching for something like this for a while. It was one of those things I couldn’t quite put my finger on but always bugged me about certain techies.

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