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We know what the geek in your life wants

TechRepublic conducts a survey each year as part of our Geek Gift Guide series. The results for 2009 may surprise you.

Each year, as part of our overall effort creating the TechRepublic Geek Gift Guide, we ask our resident researcher Liz Lightfoot to conduct a formal, scientific survey regarding the gift-giving intent of our community and members. The results of the survey are always enlightening and often surprising, but the 2009 results offer up some unexpected revelations.

Looking for some ideas this holiday shopping season, then check out the TechRepublic Geek Gift Guide 2009. The PDF version of this blog post is available as a free TechRepublic Download.

Survey results

Question 1: What geek gifts are you most likely to give this year?

Apple gadgets like the iPod and iPhone are well represented in this category, but the unspecified under $50 tech toy tops the list.

Question 2: What geek gifts are on your personal ‘wish list' this holiday season?

The wish list mirrors what many of the givers said they were most likely to buy this year, which should mean lots of happy people all around this year. The wish list does include the notebook/netbook category - you can never go wrong with another computing device I guess.

Question 3: Where do you usually shop for your geek gifts?

These results surprised me slightly - considering only the top seven retailer choices in the survey, Amazon is the clear winner. Despite efforts by bricks and mortar retailers like Best Buy and Walmart, geeks prefer to do their buying online with eBay and Newegg making the top seven choices. (For a complete list of retailers and how they ranked overall, see the last image.)

Question 4: How much do you plan on spending this holiday season?

The majority of respondents are planning to spend between $250 and $1000 this year for holiday gifts. In 2008, survey respondents said they were going to spend slightly more with the majority skewed toward the $500 to $1000 range.

Gift ideas

If you are still looking for that perfect gift for the geek in your life, no matter what your budget, then you should download the TechRepublic Geek Gift Guide 2009. We review over 25 geek-friendly gifts ranging from big-ticket items like an Internet-ready LCD television to a $7 Ethernet crossover adapter. There is bound to be a gift idea that works for you in this year's guide.

All of the individual gift reviews published by TechRepublic during 2009 are available on the Geek Gifts 2009 special report page.

Supplemental data

I thought these graphs might be of interest.

About

Mark Kaelin is a CBS Interactive Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He is the host for the Microsoft Windows and Office blog, the Google in the Enterprise blog, the Five Apps blog and the Big Data Analytics blog.

24 comments
Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

to go shopping, you need money. To get money, you need a job. Dang, I knew there was a catch there somewhere. OK, can someone please give me a job for Christmas?

tech_ed
tech_ed

if you have any "i-anything" Come-on...the iPhone as a Geek gadget? Sheesh...no way! Geeks love to "tweak" stuff...you can't tweak an iPhone/iPod or anything apple sells. You're locked into what Apples says you can do. People who have apple products and claim that they are geeks, are just geek wanna-bees! and they should get a real live instead of pilfering one using pseudo-gadgets! Ed

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

and I know how much I want to spend. Has anybody ever managed to figure out why the second amount is always more than the first? etu

Ed Woychowsky
Ed Woychowsky

Homemade gifts? I'm knitting an iPod for my wife. ;-)

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Was going to crochet a Blu-ray player, but it's too complicated for a beginner. :D

HAL 9000
HAL 9000

I always want more that I'm allowed by [b]SWMBO[/b] probably why I buy myself my own presses as I know that I'll use them ;) Though I did get a bit of a shock last week when [b]SWMBO[/b] arrived home with a $48.00 copy of [b]And Another Thing[/b] I honestly expected to have to wait till it came out in Paperback. Now I'll have to get Hard Cover copies of all of the rest of the HHGG Series. :D She got really peeved off when I read it in under 2 days too I might add. She's now complaining that she spent all that money on something I'm not going to touch again. She has even made me sit through a quiz on it's contents. She really should know better though as I always fully digest any book that I'm reading and have a almost Photographic Memory. ;) Col

richard.moore4
richard.moore4

It's hard to respect graphs (especially graphs with the word "geek" in their titles) made by people who: a) can't figure out how to turn off the auto-proofing in Office for long enough to take a screenshot b) Misspell "Blu-ray" as "Blue-ray" And that's without nitpicking the use of the word "graph."

RKG
RKG

My primary issue is the 'How Much Will You Spend?' graph. If it were organizes in increasing dollar amount, it would be easy to spot the trend; with the fields mixed up, it is harder to see the shape of the curve.

JamesRL
JamesRL

You know in business when you need a group of people to vote on your proposal, sign your contract or similar, it is good to be a nitpicker. But when we are just having some fun with a clearly unscientific poll about holiday gift giving, give us all a break. James

richard.moore4
richard.moore4

by the words "formal, scientific survey."

Tin Weasle
Tin Weasle

Dear Santa; Please give richard.moore4 a sense of humor, and throw in a stocking stuffer of understanding for Satire and irony. It makes me cry when so many are so disadvantaged, especially during the holidays. Perhaps we can set up a charity to provide these poor souls an appreciation of levity... kind of like "Save the Children"... We could "adopt" the humor-impaired and ease them into the world, perhaps starting with simple hyperbole and working up to complex shaggy dog stories and multi-level puns.

Mark W. Kaelin
Mark W. Kaelin

1. No one claimed that these graphs were professional - I made them on the fly this morning - I didn't think most readers would mind. The supplemental images were not edited - just the raw stuff from the survey. I thought some would find it interesting. 2. This is the Geekend Blog - the word "geek" is in everything always. Why be such a humbug? This is supposed to be lighthearted content. Edited: For clarity.

Wild Card
Wild Card

The wife and I decided not to exchange gifts and we bought a new TV and stand. Next year I plan on trying the same tactic to get my surround sound system.

GSG
GSG

I bought my Christmas Present online. The Nook eReader from Barnes and Noble. Since I can't trust my non-geeks to get me geeky stuff, I've asked for Barnes and Noble gift cards to pay for books. I'm leaving shortly with list in hand. First Stop, Bass Pro Shop, for the Rednecks in the family. Second Stop, MC Sports for the Athletes in the Family. Third Stop, Macy's for the normal people in the Family.

rspzeke
rspzeke

I think i'll try that approach next year also. i really could use a surround sound when im playing modern warefare 2. thanks for the plan but a little to late ...im stuck exchanging gifts :(

Mark W. Kaelin
Mark W. Kaelin

Have you finished your holiday gift shopping yet? Are you buying more online then before?

rmerchberger
rmerchberger

... I have to give up my "Geek Journeyman's Card"... but instead maybe I'm becoming a member of "Geeks Anonymous." I'm the only geek in the family, so the wifeypoo tends to give me free reign (but within the budget) for anything I want, and the 3 jobs pretty much insure I get what I want. :-) This year: Beretta PX-4 Storm 9mm. ;-) The only apple product I currently own is a G4 iMac, and it replaced an apple //gs. All my desktops run Linux (including the wifeypoo's - if I gotta fix it anyway, she runs what I don't have to fix very often ;-) and I still use my Tandy 200 laptop & my Tandy Color Computer 3, so yes, I have the geek cred, but why just Algore^Wrecycle that dead hard drive when you can drop 'em with 115 grains of FMJ? Bwaaahaaahaaahaaa!

fatman65535
fatman65535

Holiday Shopping???? What Holiday Shopping!? Holiday Shopping this year got cut due to budget cuts! Thank the PHB's who wanted larger bonuses!

Ed Woychowsky
Ed Woychowsky

However, in my house there are three December birthdays as well. The dates are the 3rd, the 7th and the 11th, busy month. So, I still need to pick up a card, flowers and mushrooms for my wife's birthday, today.

SKDTech
SKDTech

I'll be asking for the receipt. If I wanted my relatives to flush their money down the drain I would tell them to buy carbon credits so they could at least feel good about it.

jonrosen
jonrosen

Though with the cost of most i-crap, you can at least trade it back in for a pretty penny and get something worthwhile.

jck
jck

It's December already?!?!?! :^0 I bought myself a $2400 new computer I put together (and yeah, it's loaded ;) ) Now, I gotta go shop at Tiffany and Co. for something for mom, dad, and the niece. :)

DadsPad
DadsPad

my geek wish list is much bigger than my pocket book. :D