Technology has advanced rapidly over the past few decades, bringing innovative new products and services that appeal especially to “geeks” who are passionate about understanding how things work under the hood. From smartphones and apps to AI and quantum computing, there is an ever-expanding world of tech for geeks to explore and master. This article will provide an overview of some of the most interesting and cutting-edge tech categories and innovations that self-identified geeks are most excited about in 2023.
Smartphones and Mobile Apps
Smartphones have become incredibly powerful pocket computers, with specs that rival some laptops. For geeks, having the latest and greatest flagship phone is a must, as each new model brings improvements to the display, camera, processor speed, memory capacity and more (1). Mobile apps have also exploded, with millions to choose from on iOS and Android. Geeks enjoy not only using creative new apps, but also learning how to code and build their own. Some interesting app development platforms include React Native, Flutter, Xamarin and Apache Cordova (2).
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI is positively exploding, with systems getting increasingly good at tasks like image recognition, natural language processing, recommendation engines and more (3). Geeks keep up with the latest AI research and innovations, while also training models themselves with datasets and tools like TensorFlow and PyTorch. Experimenting with chatbots and other AI applications allows geeks to witness firsthand how quickly the space is evolving.
Internet of Things (IoT)
Connecting everyday devices like appliances, security cameras, lights and locks to the internet is fueling the growth of the Internet of Things. Geeks enjoy building their own Raspberry Pi-powered gadgets and automating their homes with platforms like SmartThings or Home Assistant. As more factories, supply chains and cities implement IoT sensors, there is tremendous potential to collect and analyze data to optimize processes (4).
Augmented and Virtual Reality
Both AR and VR stand to revolutionize the way we interact with computers and information. Specialized headsets from companies like Oculus and HTC transport geeks into immersive, stimulating virtual worlds where the possibilities are endless. The games and experiences can be thrilling, but so is the hardware and software powering these systems. As AR overlays digital information onto real environments, it creates opportunities for everything from interactive maps to live language translation (5).
3D printers allow physical objects to be fabricated from digital models, opening up new potential for product prototyping, art projects, replacement parts and custom tools. Geeks revel in both utilizing these printers and modifying how they work by adjusting settings like temperature, speed and nozzle size. As the capabilities of 3D printing hardware and modeling software improves, we inch closer to a world where nearly anyone can turn a digital idea into a tangible creation with the press of a button (6).
Drones and Robotics
Geeks have always loved tinkering with electronics, motors, and coding behaviors to build their own robots, automated devices, and drones. Kits like Lego Mindstorms or Arduino makes this easier than ever (7). Drone technology has evolved to balance stability, flight time, camera quality and collision avoidance. Geeks try to push boundaries with experiments in drone delivery systems, photography, racing, and videography. Indoors, robot vacuum cleaners now feature advanced mapping while humanoid robots are starting to handle some basic assists. There’s still plenty of room for the curious geek to expand possibilities.
Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain
Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum turned financial systems upside down by proving digital cash could exist without centralized control. The blockchain technology enabling this has sparked tons of innovation (8). Geeks have both mined early cryptocurrencies when it was still feasible for individuals and they study the real-world applications of blockchain ledgers for secure, transparent accounting. Speculating on altcoins or non-fungible tokens (NFT) also draws interest, even if solely aiming to make blockchain concepts more approachable through memes.
Quantum computers leverage subatomic particles to potentially process exponentially more data, much faster than classical binary computers. While still in early developmental stages, big tech companies and research institutions are racing to make commercially viable quantum systems (9). Even without access to an actual quantum computer, geeks are enthralled by learning how quantum calculations take place and the promise of simulating physical and chemical systems more accurately than ever before. Multiple programming languages and emulators exist to start understanding what may soon radically transform computing.
Cybersecurity and Hacking
There’s an arms race between cyber offense and defense, attracting geeky talents from both sides. Those aiming to prevent unauthorized access study ethical hacking practices to strengthen vulnerabilities before they’re exploited (10). However others delight in exposing them, flexing their skills identifying weaknesses, gaining access through social engineering manipulation then testing how much reach they can achieve. Simulated environments let innocuous geeks probe cybersecurity fundamentals without actual malice. Professionals on both fronts sweat the small stuff, deciphering encryption and meticulously unraveling abstract problems with a mix of logic, coding and networking mastery.
While smartphones provide powerful mobile computing, for serious gaming or handling demanding applications most geeks still rely on tricked out desktop computers. Comparing specifications like GPUs, CPUs, RAM capacity and SSD speeds for optimum performance and future-proofing has always been a beloved geeky pastime (11). Yet actually building that towering showpiece PC from components, strategically wiring it for airflow and lighting, then customizing macros and overclocking to squeeze out every possible frame per second brings an unparalleled sense of personalized achievement.
Gaming has expanded from niche hobby to dominant entertainment industry thanks to Internet connectivity and support for stunning 3D environments with realistic physics (12). For those identifying as gamers first, no title is left unplayed, eagerly trying virtual reality experiments alongside long-awaited sequels. Geeks enjoy immersing themselves in expansive open worlds or intensely competitive multiplayer arenas, appreciating polish and mechanics as both players and critics. Digging into modding communities or speedrunning challenge runs takes engagement to deeper levels. Between esports events, VR arcade venues and board game cafes, there are now more ways than ever for even casual geeky gamers to find community.
This whirlwind review should illustrate why it’s an amazing time to identify as a technology geek. New gadgets and innovations appear so rapidly, geek stereotypes about getting overly enthusiastic now seem totally justified. There are endless specializations and hobbyist communities to explore as our physical and digital realities increasingly intertwine. Whether coding the next viral app, constructing a homemade drone, discovering mathematical insights through quantum simulation or just showing off tricked out gaming rigs, today’s world offers more possibilities than ever for geeky passions to thrive.
- CNET. (2022). Best phone 2022: The top 10 smartphones right now. https://www.cnet.com/tech/mobile/best-phone/
- Rouse, M. (2022). App development platforms. SearchAppArchitecture. https://searchapparchitecture.techtarget.com/definition/app-development-platform
- Nvidia blog. (2023). What is AI? https://blogs.nvidia.com/blog/2016/07/29/whats-difference-artificial-intelligence-machine-learning-deep-learning-ai/
- Rouse, M. (2022). Internet of Things (IoT). IoT Agenda. https://internetofthingsagenda.techtarget.com/definition/Internet-of-Things-IoT
- Think with Google. (2021). What is augmented reality (AR) and how does AR work?. https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/marketing-strategies/app-and-mobile/augmented-reality/
- Sculpteo. (2022). Beginner’s guide to 3D printing – Tutorials, projects, software, news, design inspiration. https://www.sculpteo.com/en/learn/#intro
- Kloss, C. (2023). A Beginner’s Guide to Robotics. Circuit Digest. https://circuitdigest.com/article/a-beginners-guide-to-robotics
- Adams, D. (2022). Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology Explained. Investopedia. https://www.investopedia.com/tech/cryptocurrency-and-blockchain-explained/
- Mohanty, M. (2020). Everything You Need to Know About Quantum Computing. Analytics Insight. https://www.analyticsinsight.net/everything-you-need-to-know-about-quantum-computing/
- Cisco. (2022). What Is Ethical Hacking? A Comprehensive Introduction. https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/security/what-is-ethical-hacking.html
- Digital Trends. (2023). The Best Desktop Computers for 2022. https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/best-desktop-computer/
- Mashable. (2022). Gaming in 2022: What to expect in games, esports and the metaverse. https://mashable.com/article/gaming-in-2022