Today we pick up where we left off last week with 12 Ways to Become a Better BlackBerry Geek. We’re picking up the back six this time, and boy are they geeky. As in, dressing up as an elf and going to a Lord of the Rings convention geeky. So, without further ado, the tandem of Joe and Cooper bring you six more ways to be a better geek. 7. Never forget to pick up your geeky status symbols There are certain things that should just be in your geek repertoire. For instance, you might need to pick up another geek-signature blue shirt. You know, because you spilled tomato sauce/coffee/chocolate on one, you need a replacement. Same goes for khakis/black pants. What other geek status symbols do you need to remember to pick up? How about a copy of Watchmen? You can set it up on your desk and complain to everyone you know how bad the movie was, and how the graphic novel was one of the greatest works of 20th century artistry. A perfect complement: Rorschach figurine. I’m still looking for one where you can press a button and he’ll say “Hrm.” In any case, any geek knows that collectibles are just as important as family pictures when decorating your office space. Speaking of family, you might need to pick up a few items on the way home from work: loaf of bread, bottle of milk, be home right away. How can you keep all that straight in your head? You could try out a task-management application like Remember the Milk, which syncs with your BlackBerry over the air. Or you could try one like e-Moobile Task Pro. In any case, it’s the geeky way to make sure you don’t forget anything. 8. Get over that fear of the dark Don’t be afraid to admit it: no one likes the dark. It doesn’t have to be like when you were a kid and the fear of monsters gripped you. Instead, it’s fearing that your kid left a roller skate somewhere between your bedroom and the bathroom, and you could slip and fall, with no one to discover you until the morning. It’s still a fear, just a different kind of fear. Of course, you could always just put a flashlight by your bedside — or better yet, just turn on a light — but is that in the true spirit of geekdom? I think not. If you use your BlackBerry as an alarm clock (show of hands?), an application like MyFlashlight is an easy solution. Your Berry is already at your bedside, so you just pick it up, run the app, and now your BlackBerry can be your guiding light. Note: not recommended for lighting while messing with electrical or computer equipment. 9. Sharpen your chess game Is it still a requirement that a geek be good at chess, or have those days passed? If so, I’d be a bit disappointed. Chess is a real geek’s game. It takes a solid strategy combined with the ability to read and manipulate your opponent. Come to think of it, it’s probably one of the most enjoyable games period, regardless of genre and fan base. Over at Bplay you can get a smattering of not only chess, but tons of other strategy and puzzle games. Check out one of their many chess games to sharpen your strategic mind. How about a little Backgammon for the LOST fans out there? If we’re talking strategy, poker is another solid game. You can check out poker games over at Bplay. Another type of game which is rising in popularity is the brain game. I’m a personal fan of BrainAge for the Nintendo DS, but Bplay has a number of BlackBerry-compatible games. Check out BrainUp for some mind-tickling fun. If you want a bit more of a challenge, check out the Brain Tester 24-pack. While we’re here, why not point out some classic video games you might want to pick up as well? The Legend of Zelda is always a favorite, no matter which incarnation. And then there’s a whole slew of classic games you can get to kill some time. 10. Perform complex mathematical equations or simple business math The calculator that comes pre-loaded on your BlackBerry can come in handy at times, but only in simple situations. It’s not every day that someone asks for the product of 13 and 6. Sure, you can add up basic figures and even calculate tip rather easily with it, but where’s the geekiness in that? There are plenty of calculator apps out there that can get the job done, and how. Want simple conversion tables? That seems like a useful function of a calculator. MathPhone takes care of that, plus a ton of other functions. If your kid has a BlackBerry, you can use it for its graphing capabilities — it supports both 2D and 3D graphing. Rather than spend $100 on a graphing calculator, now your BlackBerry can perform the same functions for free. If you need a bit more in terms of technical functionality, you can always check out Scientific Calculator by XauravSoft. It gives professionals the ability to perform advanced calculation functions, including the use of variables. Yes, you can calculate the sine, cosine, and even arcsine of a variable. yoMotion Advanced Calculator is another option. If it’s business math you need, you can check out BizMathica, a simple business math calculator. With all these available apps, why use your on-board calculator at all? (Geek answer: because it’s free.) 11. Keep tabs on all your favorite web cams worldwide Want to see what’s going on at the opposite end of the world? A few years ago that was basically impossible unless the mainstream media broadcast live from the area. Now, though, you can keep up with a single application on your BlackBerry. WorldCam is free, and it has constantly-updated images from over 100 Webcams worldwide. So if you’re sitting in Des Moines, you can have a glance at the beaches in Hawaii or the Eiffel Tower rather than looking out your window as a distraction. [Joe's note: Cooper picked this, and I agree that keeping tabs of worldwide Webcams is pretty geeky...but does anyone use this? If so, for what purposes other than distraction? Inquiring geek minds want to know.] 12. Compose classical music (or video game theme music) We all have our musical preferences, and with applications like Pandora for BlackBerry, we can listen to anything our geeky hearts desire. However, what about that pang to create? Everyone dreams of being a rock star, but most people get lost at the stage where you learn an instrument. Yet in today’s digital culture you don’t have to play guitar or piano to write a killer riff. You can check out Vibe, a music composer, at wireless.getjar.com/mobile/products/4258/Vibe from your mobile browser. The software is not only a sequencer and editor, but it allows you to share music with Vibe’s online community. If you want to actually learn to play guitar in your spare time, you can check out free software Basic Guitar Chords. It’ll teach you the finger patterns for strumming even when you’re not in front of a guitar. It doesn’t beat formal lessons, but a geek’s got to manage his or her time. For those who prefer fake guitars and real songs, check out Guitar Hero III from Bplay. Bonus Geek Item How could we compile a list of things to make you a better BlackBerry Geek and not include NuckChorris. As you might have guessed, it has over 600 Norris-related facts, which you can copy and paste right into emails, IMs, and BBmessages. No, this hasn’t gotten old, and that’s part of what makes us geeks.
12 Ways to Become a Better BlackBerry Geek, Part 2
Previous post: Blocking calls on your BlackBerry