The Nerd Handbook: Who Me?

The blog Rands in Repose just published a Nerd Handbook, ostensibly aimed at helping someone attached to a nerd understand that nerd. Here the nerd is understood in terms of involvement with a computer.

You could, of course, understand the handbook as applying to lawyers or legal librarians, it seems to me. The fit isn’t perfect (observation 5 doesn’t carry over for lawyers in my experience), but it’s enough to give one pause.

Herewith the topic heads from the handbook, with substitutions suggested where appropriate, and a few quotes under the first heading to give you the flavour:

  1. Understand your nerd’s relation to [the computer] [the law] [the library].

    …a nerd is defined by [his computer] [the law] [the library], and you need to understand why.

    First, a majority of the folks on the planet either have no idea how [a computer] [the law] [a library] works or they look at it and think “it’s magic”. Nerds know how [a computer] [the law] [a library] works…

    The nerd has based his career, maybe his life, on [the computer] [the law] [libraries], and as we’ll see, this intimate relationship has altered his view of the world.

  2. Your nerd has control issues.
  3. Your nerd has built himself [a cave] [an office] [a cave].
  4. Your nerd loves [toys and puzzles] [Black Berrys and issues] [catalogs and requests].
  5. Nerds are fucking funny.
  6. Your nerd has an amazing appetite for information.
  7. Your nerd has built an annoyingly efficient relevancy engine in his head.
  8. Your nerd might come off as [not liking] [disdaining] [shushing] people.


  1. OK, I am nerd… its fucking funny!