Book Review: How to Be a Geek Goddess (Win a Copy!)
If you’re a Twitter-fiend, a long-time blogger, or you customize PC’s in your spare time, this book is probably too elementary for you. If there’s a special lady in your life who could use a little lesson in basic computer skills and etiquette, however, I’ve found a solid guide for you (and her.)
Christina Tynan-Wood and No Starch Press have put out a perfect beginner’s manual to all things computer. How to Be a Geek Goddess: Practical Advice for Using Computers with Smarts and Style has it all. Written from the perspective of a tech-savvy chic who has written for the pages of PC World and PC Mag, it combines girl-speak with street smarts. This book addresses all the core issues with little fluff, slang, or double-speak.
Some of the topics are covered in traditional chapter style. Others are discussed with “Dear Abby” type sidebars that use wit and wisdom to relay the message. Sample subjects include:
- Buying a PC (or Mac): What do you really need, and how much will it cost you?
- Customizing your setup: Get your settings just the way you like them.
- Shopping online: Where to find the best of everything for less.
- Security 101: Worms, and Botnets, and Viruses. (Oh my!)
- Social Networking for Dummies: So you want to be on Facebook?
Other cool chapters in the book go over digital camera specs, DVR, and how to have a wireless network. While the details are basic (and you’ll probably need additional info to actually set up your home office), you can get an idea of what’s needed to achieve your desired results – and feel fairly confident doing so.
Note: Chapter 12 is titled, “The Sexy Geek” and upon first glance, appears to give advice on hooking up online. A little reading will tell you, however, that this section is just an outline of dating resources, tips for having a safe internet relationship, and a page and half of links to more titillating online entertainment (i.e. p*rn for women.) Keep in mind that while there’s nothing overtly explicit in the content, this book is written for the mature woman (not your adolescent daughter.)
Who’s this book designed for? While definitely aimed at women (it’s complete with handbag references and fashionable USB accessories), it’s actually a well-written approach that any gender can appreciate. If you’re especially concerned that a grandma, aunt, or sister needs a bit of a tech lesson (and don’t wish to have all the responsibility fall upon yourself), this book can be a lifesaver. Likewise, if your uncle happens to skim a few chapters, it can only enrich his computer usage.
Like a much-needed pep talk from a well-meaning friend, How to Be a Geek Goddess is heavy on the help, light on the lingo. And isn’t that what women really want?
Want to give it a read? No Starch Press has 4 new copies of How to Be a Geek Goddess to send to a few lucky Wise Bread readers. To enter the giveaway, post a comment below by January 9th, 2009. U.S. and Canada only. Must be 18 or older to enter.
Wise Bread will not sell or use your email address for any purpose other than to contact the winner.