Nerds are clearly the superior species of off-brand humans, and there have been quite a few misconceptions when it comes to the true definition of a nerd for many generations. Nerds have too long been categorized as geeks, and geeks have too long been mislabeled as nerds.
The distinction is clear, and we are here to help extinguish the fabled nonsense of the many. You may now clearly understand the difference between a nerd and a geek, and feel complete. You’re welcome, ahead of time.
Straightening out the definitions
The simplest form of explanation in this age-old debacle is to clearly define each term.
Geek – A person who knows just about everything about one topic or field of interest. A person who seeks to retain “collections” of things. Gathering momentos directly (and sometimes indirectly) related to their subject of interest is a key identifier of a geek.
Nerd – An astute intellectual that typically shines in one particular topic or field of study. A person who is “achievement” oriented, and has an unnatural desire to engage in trivia.
Difference in social interactions
Nerds tend to be more introverted than geeks. Due to their intense knowledge and interest in academic acuity, it can be difficult to know how to respond appropriately in a social setting. It takes a lot of time and devotion to study and research to maintain the brain of a nerd, so social settings aren’t really their thing.
Geek, however, are surprisingly much more active in social situations. Their eagerness to share may provide an awkward moment or two when the conversation becomes supremely one-sided, but they do enjoy sharing.
Occupations of a nerd or a geek
Nerds and geeks have to make a living too. Nerds tend to gravitate towards a career that caters to their intense devotion to all things academic. For example, a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) is a nerd. CPAs love numbers and math.
A geek, however, seeks out employment that allows them to indulge in their expertise and have fun at the same time. Geeks become writers, graphic artists, retro shop owners, or the guy behind the desk at Gamestop.
Famous example of a nerd
Stephen Hawking is a perfect example of a nerd. The man has devoted his life to expanding his knowledge of the universe. He has a degree in physics from Oxford University, a Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics from Cambridge University, and years of teaching experience.
Famous example of a geek
Steve Jobs, love him or hate him, is the ultimate geek. He clearly has an undying interest in all things pertaining to digital technology. He revolutionized our definitions of communication, documentation, and file storage.