OSCON fashion, Ignite, and beyond

I had a fabulous time at OSCON! In the spirit of my notes on the geek dress code, here’s an OSCON fashion report.

Glasses were definitely IN. Me and Mario G. spaced out for a long time wearing these Trip Glasses! Maybe that’s why we got into such deep conversation later in the corner of the Open Source Politics session.

OSCON

OSCON

Ingy döt Net models his 5 pairs of sunglasses. I’m not sure if this was a particular message about redundancy in code or if it was just one of those Ingy things.

OSCON

Librarian Avenger Erica had the best shoes:

OSCON

But seriously, OSCON. I had a good time and talked to a lot of smart interesting people. I hung out with Denise and Mark from Dreamwidth, with Skud, with my former co-workers from Socialtext – Casey, Ingy, and Lyssa – and with Oblomovka, Yoz, Greg Elin, and a super old school Perl monger named Dave, Emma Jane, Val. I appreciated everyone’s advice on consulting and on situations where one is expected to sort of provide the diversity. (Argh.) I went to all the expo hall booths talking with people and gathering up stickers to pass out at BlogHer’s Geek Lab later in the week. The only full sessions I went to were Akkana Peck’s Bug Fixing talk, which was really clear and good, and the open source politics panel.

Skud’s keynote Standing Out in the Crowd was great. I’m still kind of absorbing some of the reactions to it from O’Reilly Radar and from Linux World News. Women in any tech field, don your best armor before wading into those threads. My feeling is that it could have been a lot worse though and maybe we’ve reached a tipping point where enough people understand there’s some problems and have a clue what might be helpful. For me, one of the more depressing things that happens in this field is when women with about 100 times the status and skill level I have end up giving the (private) advice that while they agree with all this and still feel it, they think it is bad for one’s career to mention sexism or feminism ever. In this case, hurrah, that just didn’t happen (at least that I’m aware of.) However, I think it’s still the case that the vast majority of women I know in my field do feel the effects of misogyny and sexism and are often enraged by it in ways difficult to express. I would like to go further out on a limb here and say that the intersections of geek fandom culture and open source/tech people combined with the ongoing discussions of race, class, gender etc, like Racefail ’09 for example, have upped the level of awareness and of discourse and have really changed some people’s perspectives. Not that that translated into anyone in this discussion going “Hey, how about the rather low number of African American and Latino/a folks represented in open source at this conference and others in the U.S.?”

Anyway!

I enjoyed speaking at Ignite OSCON and hearing the amazing lightning talks.Selena Deckelmann‘s talk on the election in Nigeria was pretty great. As a Postgres expert she went to connect with a few IT guys in Nigeria who were scanning and analyzing the fingerprints on a large sample of ballots. Some huge percentage of them were duplicate fingerprints. After a long legal battle, Olusegun Mimiko was declared the legal winner of the election and the governor of Ondo state.

My own talk was a short version of the DIY for PWD talk I gave at ETech.

Here’s what I said, more or less:


Hi, I’m Liz Henry. Would you like a flying jetpack? I really, really would! To get them, we’re going to need to apply DIY and open source ideas & organization to hack accessibility – and the idea of disability.

My wheelchair is a machine, a tool to get my body from one place to another. I’d like for it to be easy — and possible — for me to fix and hack. Like a bike, or a car. It’s no more complex. I want root on my own mobility.

You can easily find information on how to fix a car. even though a car is like a giant polluting killing machine. There are books, tools, manuals available. The barriers to entry are low, so lots of people start car-fixing businesses.

You can find out how to fix a bike. There’s tons of information freely circulated to the public. There are 20 million bike riders in the US. There’s little independent bike shops everywhere. It’s an industry.

But how to fix a wheelchair. 55 million disabled people are NOT feeling lucky. It’s very hard to find information on how to fix a wheelchair. Or build one. How to sew your own seat back, build lightweight interchangeable parts. Nope!

Oddly, rather than being just a tool like a bike or a car, a wheelchair, walker, even a cane, is considered a MEDICAL DEVICE. Its invention, distribution, maintenance are under the control of powerful elites.

Why should you care? Well, because YOU will likely be disabled or have significant physical impairment for around 8 years of your life. That’s the average in industrialized countries. No amount of individual power changes the systemic problems disabled people face.

How can you avoid this fate? Dick Cheney, one of the most powerful people on the planet, threw out his back and ended up in the worst vehicle ever. 50 pounds of cold steel, it might as well be a wheelbarrow. You can’t get around in that. Bang, he’s lost his independent agency.

It’s not all about wheelchairs. As coders you might think about hand functionality, dexterity. People invent stuff to help with that. Most of that info’s in out of print books, and on a couple of personal blogs. Can vanish into the mist … like a geocities page…

Why should you care now? Until you need it, you don’t care. When you do need it, you’re busy. you’re poor. and you’re in pain. No telomere-fixing nanobot is going to save you from age and impairment. Impossible utopian nanobots are why we don’t HAVE jetpacks.

Why isn’t disability hacking more popular? Two big reasons. Attitude, and socio-economic factors. Bad attitudes are: Fear of mortality. Medical experts. Expectation of charity. Isolation. Lack of information sharing.

The second factor is systemic and socioeconomic. Your impaired body makes you disabled, so you fall under the control of the medical industrial complex. Your wheelchair repair manual or voice control hack might get you sued. Might violate copyright or a patent, might ruin someone’s profit.

At some point YOU will need assistive technology. And you will want to hack it. You’ll need a DIY attitude about access. You’ll really need open source information structures and communities. Big projects, and the ability to customize things.

Here’s some cool DIY hacks. Bicycle crutch holders made from PVC pipe. I can ride a bike, I just can’t walk too well. Soda bottle prosthetic arm: a bottle, a plaster cast, and a blowdryer: cheap but it works. Crutch pockets to help carry things when your hands are full.

Here’s a great project you could join. Tactile maps, a brilliant mashup for people with visual impairments. Email them an address, they print and snail mail you a raised print map. Software and hardware people are collaborating on this.

And another, oneswitch.org, a brilliant collection of hacks with step by step instructions on building one-switch interfaces to electronic devices. Control with a finger or by puffs of air. Others: Whirlwind Wheelchair international, open prosthetics project.

People with disabilities need open source culture. But existing open source culture needs the physical inventiveness and software adaptations driven by necessity, made by people with disabilities. Everyone disabled has a cool hack or two. They *have* to. Pay attention to them.

In the future… Will you be a sad lonely person fumbling to epoxy tennis balls onto the feet of your totally World War II looking hospital walker ? The recipient of charity, pity, mass produced help, at the mercy of what elite “experts” think is good for you?

Or will you be hacking your burning man jetpack as part of a vibrant community that supports serendipity, free access to information, non hierarchical peer relationships, and a culture of invention?

What will our future be? A DIY approach to hacking ABILITY… will help everyone. We’ll invent cool shit! We’ll open sourceily collaborate our way out of nursing home prisons run by the evil medical industrial complex AND… the future will be awesome!

Thanks.

For a bit more burbling about OSCON and BlogHer ’09, see my post on blogher.com: From OSCON to BlogHer.

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My tiny adorable flowered computer!

I got an HP Mini Vivienne Tam edition to review a few days ago, and I’ve used it so far for blogging, surfing, email, IM-ing, and writing up my thoughts in Notepad. Here’s my preliminary review based on four days of casual but heavy use.

This is a good computer for a blogger or a student who doesn’t need a huge screen or massive computing power. Also it’s incredibly cute.

Here’s some praise!

I’m a demanding blogger. I type 100 words a minute and I like to have about 50 tabs open. This HP Mini was incredibly easy for me to slip into using. I blogged from it without noticing the slightly smaller keyboard; I could type just as fast as I usually do. The size, key placement, action, and feel of the keys are all just great. If you’ve tried a mini before, but had trouble getting used to the keyboard, you may be pleased with a Mini.

The screen is big and very readable! It’s tiny and very light.

I like the way the case opens and shuts. The shell is hard plastic – not fabric or gelskin covered.

It has two USB ports, which seems quite nice.

I’m happy with a 60GB hard drive in such a tiny, light computer.

The wireless mouse works well.

Everything I wanted out of my Asus EeePC, but sadly never quite got, has come true in this adorable netbook!

Here’s my wishlist.

I fervently wish for holes in the case where I could attach straps. Two holes near the hinge would be ideal, so that I could put a shoulder strap on this beastie. At She’s Geeky conference this weekend, how many women did I just watch, walking around the room holding a computer, a paper notepad, a pen, a purse, and a latte? Around the house, it would be all that plus a book and a baby and 6 things you’ve picked up from the living room to move to the office. Computers need handles. But beyond the OLPC or old clamshell iMac handles that require a hand. Shoulder strap power!

Backlit keys would make me *very* happy. I’m often typing in bed or in a darkened room, in work meetings or conferences. It’s lovely if I can see the keys, but keep the screen relatively dim.

Neutral thoughts

* Mostly, I use MacOS X or Linux. So this is the first time I’ve used Windows. While I’m not especially impressed with Windows XP, I’m also not especially annoyed. So for a week or two, I’m going to stick with XP to give it a fair shake.

* I haven’t tried doing any development on this machine yet, but I think that will go quite well.

* I haven’t tested battery life. So far, it hasn’t been a problem, but I haven’t approached it systematically.

* I haven’t tried the webcam yet. It has a built in camera! I will take it through some video chat paces.

* I haven’t tried installing any games or a Second Life client on it. I’ll let you all know how that goes. I figure, I don’t play a ton of games, but if Second Life behaves well, then I can stand by my recommendation the computer for the writer and student who’s also a casual gamer.

My criticisms of the HP Mini are minor.

* The computer goes to sleep a bit too quickly when I half-close the lid. I’m often blogging or emailing or IM-ing in social or work situations, or doing actual work with private information in a cafe, and if someone comes up to talk with me, I need to half-close the computer so they can’t shoulder-surf. While the Mini wakes up very quickly, I wish it didn’t go to sleep until I *actually shut the lid*.

* The bumps on the f and j keys are too subtle for me to feel them easily. I could type with more confidence with better subliminal feedback about the “home” keys.

* The hinge on the case could open a little more widely. It goes past 90 degrees, but not quite far enough. I type in my lap, not on a desk. This is partly habit I’m sure, but I wonder if it’s at all a gender related habit, as chairs, desks, and tables often don’t match up for me, because I’m shorter than the default person (male) they’re designed for? Because the computer’s in my lap, and the resulting viewing angle, I sometimes need to tilt the screen further back than 100 degrees. Now, this is also true when I have my HP Mini in bed. Which I often do.

AND NOW FOR THE ADORABLENESS

This computer is cute. It’s pretty. But it doesn’t make me hurl with the pinkitude. Really!

It’s a really nice color of deep red, with black around the screen. There’s nothing ugly and clunky about this computer. It’s totally elegant. I take it out of my bag, and everyone admires it, and whatever one might think about HP’s targeting of women or the cut of the marketing, women everywhere I go are exclaiming with delight at how cute this computer is. It is very much OMG I WANT THAT. Then, because I’m this sort of person, I hand them the computer and invite them to type something and take it through its internet browser paces. In fact, it’s been really fun to have people come up and talk to me and be so friendly, because they’re curious about my computer.

For quite some time I’ve been asking the world for an adorable computer that is small and light, yet still a useful computer. (Oh, how I miss my 12 inch MacBook, but how I wished it were *even smaller*.) While I have issues as a feminist with everything being pink especially like, pink tools and pink computers, (see girl geek bingo), I also have mixed feelings and like things that are pretty and cute. It’s better if they’re pretty, cute, and punk rock, and actually work.

This is my usual style (me and my sister, with 13-inch MacBooks covered in stickers)

And here I am with the Vivienne Tam,

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This gets across how tiny and handy it is. See how it likes to sit on top of my MacBook?! It’s like a cute little ladybug!

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The Internet is srs bzns and so am I, in black boys’ guayabera, SF State tshirt, cotton handkerchief with red stitching, and matching computer,

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The Vivienne Tam and its matching mouse want to wear my Fluevog boots:

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If it had a hat, it would have a beret. If it were a color of nail polish, it would be “I’m Not Really a Waitress” red. Yes. I have middle class brand awareness. I cannot help it. When I wasn’t playing video games, I grew up in a mall. It seeps into your blood.

Even the packaging was nice! It was like buying a computer at Sephora. Or Bloomingdale’s or something. I know it’s shallow, and obviously I care WAY more about the specs and usability of a computer than the box it comes in, but I noticed the box anyway. Check this out:

exciting box

tiny pink computer!

At the She’s Geeky / Women 2.0 Dinner, I ended up passing the computer around almost as much as I got to use it myself. And when I whipped it out of my backpack to show to my friend Beth aka Techmama, she yelped and pulled out her own! We were like, “Oh no, same dress at the prom!” We managed to share the cuteness!

I can heartily recommend this computer if you’re a blogger, writer, or you just want your own laptop instead of using a shared family computer. The 60 GB hard drive is big and fast enough to deal with the *ton* of photos, Flip videos, and music that I tend to accumulate as a blogger. The wireless also works very well so the machine lives up to its promise of portability.

ALSO, IT IS REALLY CUTE. Did I mention that!?

I have three matching wireless mice to give away. Red mice with lavender flowers and silver sides. Who wants them?

* Buy it from HP: HP Mini Vivienne Tam (“Buy it” link gives all the specs)
* Buy it from Amazon:HP Mini 1140NR 10.2-Inch Netbook – Vivienne Tam Edition (1.6 GHz Intel Atom N270 Processor, 1 GB RAM, 60 GB Hard Drive, XP Home, 3 Cell Battery)

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Silly geek tshirt

Here’s a silly tshirt for people who write in vim or vi. Do you prefer the good attitude? Or bad?

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If babies were all considered disabled

This morning I woke up thinking, “What if babies were treated as the disabled are treated?”

What if infancy was medicalized the way that old age is medicalized?

Pregnancy would be an embarrassing, extended disaster. It would mean a person was about to go down to the very bottom of our economic system. You’d be quarantined in your home by governmental order. In order to go out in public, you’d have to prove you don’t have a dangerous infectious disease that makes your stomach swell up. You’d get doctor’s signatures send in forms to your insurance company and the government to declare you were pregnant, and every couple of weeks you’d have to renew those forms.

Glossing over labor and delivery, let’s consider what happens when you’ve got a baby. It can’t walk! It can’t eat food! It’s disabled, poor thing. It needs special nutritional supplements that can only be prescribed by a doctor. It also needs a special device called a stroller which costs maybe five or ten thousand dollars. You’d apply through Medicare to get one. Maybe they won’t approve one for use outside the home! There’s stroller stores, especially online, but wow, would you buy a Bugaboo stroller that cost $5000 without getting to see it first and whether it would be good for your situation, or would fit in your car or whether you could lift it up? By the time your prescription for the “stroller” had been approved by doctors and you’d proved through several insurance company and social worker home visits that you indeed had a baby, and by the time the stroller arrived, your baby could walk. Oh, you could rent a basic stroller from a medical supply store for 10 bucks a day, but it would be MADE OF LEAD.

In some ways you feel that the doctors and social service agencies have a bit of an attitude that if they delay long enough, the problem will shift, and disappear. Just as they act like older people or people with disabilities are going to die soon anyway, so why are they fussing so much about having this wheelchair, or ventilator, or home health care? If they wait long enough, the problem will disappear.

Instead of this medicalized model of the distribution of goods and services, we have Babies R Us, giant stores full of shelves where you can try and buy all manner of highly specialized products for babies. In fact this industry is fairly new. It was created when companies realized that babies change their requirements and abilities every couple of months and that there were people who would buy all new junk for them. Instead of carrying babies in slings or on our hips and requiring that cars have seatbelts, we have 3 different sizes of car seat and a million varieties of strollers good for differerent ages. We have cribs and playpens and Pack-n-Play and Exersaucers and those bouncy things that go in doorways.

Disabled people, and older people, are a similarly lucrative market. The way the market is utterly sucks. There is no Crips R Us or Spazzmart where I can go browse the shelves of fascinating bright colored crap. INstead, I was at a sort of auto body shop warehouse wheelchair store, with a couple of mechanics who order stuff off the internet for me and who guard the knowledge of how to fix wheelchairs jealously.

You can order wheelchairs off the Internet these days but wheelchair stores haven’t change their model of trying to make a profit. And from what I can tell they are failing to make much of a profit. Or if they are it’s at the top and the store doesn’t reflect it.

Seriously, it’s as if we all bought our cars from the skankiest auto repair shops, and there weren’t really any sorts of customizations or accessories we could put on them. There wouldn’t be any auto parts stores. Right now, I can think of at least 3 big auto parts stores within a mile of my house, and every hardware store, Target, and drugstore has an aisle of junk to bling out your car.

I put my hope in the baby boomers; as they all age, they will expect to be able to cruise the aisles of the CripMart and get flowered cane tips and colostomy bags to coordinate with their power suits.

26 million Americans have a severe disability. 1.6 million people use wheelchairs, and I’d bet my boots that many more people would if they could: if using a wheelchair was shown as useful, cool, empowering, for real, and if old people didn’t have to jump through 20 million hoops to get decent ones that don’t weight a hundred pounds. Instead, older people limit their activities and hide their struggles, ashamed, and scared to let anyone see that they might need help, because our system of “help” is so demeaning, dehumanizing, and awful that they’ll rot in an armchair in front of their televisions for 10 years till they die rather than admit that they might need a walker. It’s not stupid pride. It’s a reasonable fear that they will lose whatever independence and autonomy they still have.

I was talking with people about this who argue that maybe the market is limited, so companies don’t think they can make a profit. But it’s not all that limited. There’s something like 5 million babies born every year, and look at that market in baby stuff. If you look at who’s elderly in the U.S. Census the numbers are completely crazy. And in fact… even if you assume that disabled and elderly people are not going to be able to afford to buy this stuff, they’ll have relatives who might be able to.

Having there be real competition to build and sell this junk will help bring the prices down. In 1984, there was no market for “mountain bikes”. Now there’s shops with them everywhere. Though I couldn’t find how many are sold in the U.S. in a year, I wonder how those numbers compare to the potential wheelchair market? My point is, someone is missing a giant capitalist opportunity.

How hard it was for me in the 90s to get my first wheelchair! On the advice of a social worker, I stole one from the hospital, the one I was in as I sat in her office crying and she told me she couldn’t help me because my diagnosis wasn’t solid. My second wheelchair, that I got from a fellow student: one with good insurance. The way that if you have a nice chair, other disabled people look you up and down and guess, “Car Accident?” because only people with good insurance can have nice wheelchairs, and good medical insurance is so very, very rare, while car insurance companies for some reason are likely to be more decent and pay up for wheelchairs promptly, covering the entire cost. The few decent wheelchairs that exist are passed from hand to hand, often through charitable foundations.

Ruth, at A Different Light writes very well about civil rights, human rights, and disability, for example in A Matter of Life and Death.

Then we have people who say they want to die because they cannot get out of their homes because there have been In Home medical equipment restrictions or they can’t afford medical equipment. Their wheelchair breaks and they can’t get another one so they are immobile. This leads to depression. Perhaps their caregiver is an aging parent who can no longer care for them – or dies. All of these changes make disabled peoples’ lives unmanageable and can make suicide look like a way out.

In the last week or so I read through all of Ruth’s archives on this blog, and through some of them on her other blogs. She makes many good points about the consumer model vs. the medical model: try here in Seeing advocacy as a tool and in On distancing from the disabled. I realized over this past week how the medical and charity models are related — and how wrong they are.

Let people choose for themselves what they want and need!

If you would like to do a useful thought exercise, extend my stroller model to thinking about chairs and cars. People sit in regular chairs: office chairs, kitchen chairs, armchairs. There is no reason that they have to. You might argue if you were from another culture that it would be healthier if we sat on the floor or learned how to squat on our heels. (And they’d generally be right). Likewise, if we just walked places, or ran, or biked, we wouldn’t need cars to get to work. Yet… wanting to sit on a chair or ride in a car does not make a person “disabled”. But even people in dire poverty are often able to scrape up enough money to have a car and certainly to have chairs. If those things were only available to people who have the health insurance of the insanely privileged, our entire societal structure would weaken. I’d extrapolate this to say that if we made it easier for the disabled and elderly to get assistive technology and mobility devices, it would strengthen our entire society.

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Down with keyboards, down with pants!

I was thinking today about my silly invention of “smart pants” so that people could just type on their pants. Then I realized something crucial:

Who needs pants!

Seriously, to hell with pants! Down with pants!

Not to mention down with keyboards.

Instead maybe we’ll have little motion detecting rings on our fingers and will just make the barest hints of typing motions. The micro-intent to move will be sensed by the set of rings with tiny wireless transmitters. Or for the prototype, you could have the rings wire up like flexible brass knuckles to a bracelet with the transmitter.

So if I end up like this eventually, I won’t have to type 15 words a minute, and I hope also not to talk like a Dalek.

Why have typing motions at all, then? It might be important to have some kind of physical motion and body memory.

And as I contemplate this Ankle-Foot Orthosis that will soon be mine, I wonder why the thing, cool as it looks (yay for rehab equipment with style!) doesn’t have all kinds of electronic sensors in it. I don’t ask for it to move my foot around, or walk for me like a real exoskeleton would. But I WANT ITS DATA. Data, goddamn it! Think of all the cool data it could be collecting on my gait, on the strength of my hamstrings as my back toe is pushing off. Instead of whining that as the day goes on my leg gets weaker, I could just have a handy graph on my blog so that anyone who cared to know would see how well I’m walking. I noticed at BlogHer that there were exercise pedometer sorts of things that upload and track your workouts on a website and even on social sites. How about for rehab too?

I hope to see some of these mad inventions in the next few years.

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Wear your fandom

Two things that got me thinking today:

A bracelet flash drive in pink and blue rubber. Like jelly bracelets but with 512 MB of space! If I were a teenager I would be wearing my chat program and archives here, and my private diaries, and maybe a little music. Making it a bracelet is a great idea – who doesn’t hate the usual drive design with the little caps that come off and get lost?

To this thought I will add the lovely illustration of Moore’s Law: 512 MB drives for 99 cents.

I realize I’m jaded now and expect to carry around a month’s worth of music with no repeats in an Altoids tin. Very soon we’ll have nice jewelry for our hard drives, and not just cheap jelly bracelets.

If I were a computer manufacturer or a media conglomerate I’d be doing stuff like putting Buffy DVD collections onto fancy Buffy themed bracelets. We aren’t quite to the point of carrying all human-generated information on a tiny holocube crystal earring. But the DVD bracelets will be great – have your stuff around handy to watch any time. There’s all sorts of stuff to put onto wearable computers, but probably videos will be the killer. Spiffing up the jewelry with visible identifiers or particular styles means you’ll be able to wear your fandom.

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Geek dress code, Silicon Valley version

Skud blogged a very funny comparison of geek vs. non-geek dress codes. I think the geek code allows for a more fine-grained analysis!

THE GEEK DRESS CODE
With elements of clothing listed in order of ascending formality
================================================================

Shirts:

Tshirt your mom bought you at Kmart when you were in high school. Ill fitting; 80s colored; perhaps with abstract designs.
Tshirt for tech company, probably white, grubby, boring.
Tshirt for unboring tech company or science fictional thing.
Cool tech tshirt, black.
Cool tech tshirt, black, tucked in, with belt.
Snarky geek tshirt perhaps from threadless or Thinkgeek; tight fitting to show off boobs and/or muscles.
Snarky geek shirt with sports jacket; best multitool on belt.

Underwear:

Underwear worn yesterday, turned inside out.
Underwear your parents or s.o. got you for a utilitarian present.
Underwear that is actually cute and fits, that you bought for yourself.
Underwear with snarky geek saying on it. Impressive!

Pants:

Baggy pants, too short, bought in high school by mom; used to be either green, grey, black, or brown; now a greyish nothing-color; holes optional.
Jeans.
Jeans without prominent holes.
The “nice” jeans; no holes, no stains; they fit.
Black jeans!
Pants that are not jeans but are not quite suit pants either -OR- a misguided Utilikilt.

Skirts:

Long flowing hippie skirt, unfashionable, no underwear, or boxers
Skirt that is more current style of some sort.
Miniskirt and combat boots ( with snarky tshirt, multitool, and jacket, this is punk geek formal).
Ball gown of amazing ridiculousness, with sneakers.
Actual fancy dress that looks fantastic, with girly shoes (to be used sparingly).

Bras:

None.
Tank top.
Tank top with shelf thing built in.
Actual bra, scungy.
Fun colored lacey bra -OR- none, with Snarky geek shirt, tight.

Stockings:

Mismatched white tube socks.
White socks.
Black socks.
Fun socks.
Tights.
Ironic leg warmers.
Stripey knee socks.
Stripey thigh highs.
Fishnets, pristine.
Fishnets, artistically torn, with safety pins. Especially on guys. Guys, y’all are taking notes, right?

Accessories acceptable for dressing up:

Laptop backpack.
Laptop bag, fancy.
Laptop modded in any way; stickers; etching; plastic case.
A funky vest. (For hippie chicks or old unix sys admins).
Pocketwatch. (Sys admins ONLY).

We could keep going, I’m sure! I can’t even begin to touch upon shoes.

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Pink and sparkly

Okay on the one hand, Geek Girl Bingo. Pink, sparkly, cute, colour choice, stereotype city. I am totally down with calling people on their constant application of these ideas to femininity.

On the other hand, I kind of want this. On the substrate of the pink and sparkly Hello Kitty laptop, I would add a million bad attitude stickers, and it would be glorious. I could mod my Hello Kitty with some green tentacles to make a Hello Cthulhu. It’s kind of a problem.

Clearly my mind is not free from colonization.

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