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Hello, and welcome to the nerdity test. This test is designed to help
you determine your nerdity quotient. In the past, someone may have watched
you,or listened to something you said and then exclaimed, "You geek! What do
you think you are doing?" Or maybe it's just us. In any event, we here at
the nerdity testing lab were prompted to ask "just what is a nerd?" In
response, we came up with this test. By taking it, you will determine your
current nerdity quotient (from 0% to 100%), with 100% roughly corresponding
to a pile of sludge unable to communicate with anything human except
through a device that is a miracle of modern medicine and engineering, and
whose only connection to the outside world is through the computer Internet
As this test is being distributed primarily in places of high
concentrations of known nerds, and nerds in turn tend to have nerd friends,
that someone who has never heard of or seen the nerdity test is assumed to
be 0% nerd. However, once such knowledge comes to them, they are
immediately placed in the 100% nerdity category. This is done because it
is also assumed that only a true geek would utter something to the effect
of: "Nerdity test?!? What a stupid concept! I'm too cool to take
something as dumb as that." The values in between are determined by taking
the test and scoring it as follows.
For each question below for which you can answer "yes" or "true",
take one point. At the end of the test, divide the total number of points
you scored by the total number of questions in the test. Treat this number
as a percentage that represents your nerdity quotient.
Some of the questions will have parentheticals at the end of them.
What is contained within the parentheticals is a short list of examples
relating to the given question. The list is not to be taken as all
inclusive but merely as suggestions that might apply. All technicalities
count - after all, being technical is half of what being a nerd is all
RECOMMENDATIONS and HINTS:
It is felt that for maximum enjoyment, you should respond out loud with
your answers. You should treat each "yes" that you say as a personal
catharsis of what you are doing wrong (or right depending on your opinion
of nerdity) and each "no" may then be disputed by your peers. In this way,
errors due to lying or personal oversight are avoided and the test also has
a therapeutic effect for the closet nerd. As an aside, information gleaned
about others should be treated confidentially. Each of us has a dork-side
that we don't want others to know about.
Experiment shows that nerdity CAN be cured! With effort and personal
sacrifice... The nerdity quotient is a cross between proclivity toward as
well as actual current status in nerddom. Some questions are "have you
ever..." while others are "do you now...". The former register the fact
that you have a propensity toward nerdity, while the later acknowledge the
fact that you are currently geeking. Obviously, as your answers toward the
"do you now" type questions change, so will your nerd quotient.
Please use only a number two pencil. Mark all answers in your blue
book. Shake well before using. Lather. Rinse. Repeat as desired. Show
all work. Refrigerate after opening. No partial credit will be given. A
table of useful formulas is included at the end. You may begin.... NOW!
Please put your pencils down. That's it, hope you enjoyed.
To analyze your Nerdity Quotient, divide your total number of "yes/true"
responses by the total number of questions and compare to this list.
Note that the purity test scorer that the submit button gets you will
return your nerd purity, which tells you how free of nerdity you are.
- 0 - 20
- 21 - 30
- 31 - 35
- Closet nerd
- 41 - 45
- You refuse to live anywhere without pizza delivery service
- 51 - 55
- YOU need some serious help
- 56 - 60
- You are on first name basis with Radio Shack employees
- 61 - 65
- Your best friend is a microchip
- 66 - 70
- Donald Knuth and E. Gary Gygax are your heroes
- 76 - 80
- "Revenge of the Nerds" poster-child
- 81 - 85
- Hoping to invent Warp Field Theory or transporter technology
- 86 - 90
- Desperately seeking cybernetic interface implanted in your brain
- 91 - 99
- Move over, Einstein
- Hail, O Nerd Master, virgin sliderulers I sacrifice unto you
This version compiled by yours truly: J. Bennett, Cornell U., Ithaca, NY.
Any questions or comments? Drop me a line at
Credits- (a.k.a. The "you-think-I'm-gonna-take-all-the-blame" department)
A special big thanks to the following (in no particular order):
Matt Warren :firstname.lastname@example.org for multiple watching of
"Revenge of the Nerds", underwear with name in it as well as the question on
Jeopardy contestants being stupid.
Rebecca Crowley :email@example.com for pointing out that a nerd
not only HAS arguments with his/her professor, but WINS them too!
Laura Sachi :firstname.lastname@example.org for pointing out the nerd
tendency to simplify the situation, and merely count the questions on the test
based on the one's they can answer 'no' to.
Eric Klis :email@example.com for verifying equations in
textbooks, using a calculator to tabulate score, being offended by questions
found on the test, and lying in order to get a different score. (well, the
questions pertaining to those activities anyway, I don't know that he has done
any of them)
Carl Oppendahl: firstname.lastname@example.org for reminding me of the "dark
ages" of computers when programmers used punch cards, offering the category
of ham radio as a potential nerd hobby, and questioning the speed of a nerd's
Michael Fitch: email@example.com who felt obligated to raise
the scores of "those physics geeks" who have used radiation film badges, stolen
radiation warning stickers for use on their notebooks, discussed cold fusion
with passing strangers (and been involved in cold fusion testing), integrated
numerically, and been placated by a well drawn spherical harmonic.
anonymous : for competing for the highest score on the test and for
challenging to a rematch when done.
firstname.lastname@example.org : knowledge of reverse polish notation
calculators and favorite computing language (as well as defending it in
Kevin MacCuish: email@example.com : Thanks for sending a whole
lot of potential questions including the self-help tests, reading computer
manuals for fun, jealousy toward someone due to their computer, 8-track nerds,
and everyday situations as mathematical concepts.
T.K. Baltimore: firstname.lastname@example.org : IBM vs. Mac and the
arguments over which is better.
Jennifer C. Ginfrida : Jentrpt@bach.udl.edu : for reminding me of my
childhood days spent watching Starblazers. Japanimation was great, but I
suspect that you may be the only person known to exist who can still sing the
theme song to that particular show.
Josh Wojcik: Wojcik@umr.edu : for solving Schroedinger's eqn. "for fun".
Hey, if you've got the time and there's nothing better to do, why not?
Jennifer Deiros: email@example.com : she's not the only one who
still owns a commodore 64 and still buys software for it.
Peter White : Peter.White@analog.com : standardizing his OS's through
the use of alias and batch commands, gif file wallpaper and drinking by
% alcohol rather than by taste.
Mike Owsiany : Mowsiany@ecs.umass.edu : applying to colleges just to
see if you can get in.
Rnewell@pomona.claremont.edu : "TNG" vs. "TOS" for the trekker nerds.
Gary P. Chimes : firstname.lastname@example.org : who scores the test in
scientific notation, argues over who was better - Einstein or Feynman and isn't
afraid to laugh out loud while reading Feynman's lectures.
Peter Rabinas : email@example.com : for pointing out that only
a nerd would spend time taking a test to see if he was a nerd.
Harry Surden : Has2@cornell.edu : who not only has the dubious
distinction of being the first person from my own site unknown to me to offer
input, but has also lost sleep over computer games, subscribes to Computer
Gaming World. Naked people and hi-res computer scan is also one of his (all
of which should lead you to conclude that Ithaca really needs a better
I'd like to continue to thank these people for contributing to the
older versions of the nerdity test (see lower version numbers for specifics):
Rahul Verma: RV0Sfirstname.lastname@example.org,
Thomas Marlowe: KYRIE@coos.dartmouth.edu,
Kiet H Tran: KHT@kepler.unh.edu,
Cynthia Pettit: Pettit@CS.unc.edu,
Susan Schneck: email@example.com,
Hal J. Burch: HBURCH@sleepy.ossm.edu,
Carl Mueller: firstname.lastname@example.org,
Andrew Bell: email@example.com,
...And a big thanks to the "Post-Prelim/Problem Set Beer and Wine Crew"
THANK YOU ALL!!
For additional information or a copy of the current version, send me e-mail to
the above address. IF YOU'D LIKE TO MAKE A CONTRIBUTION please send me the
questions you feel appropriate (please, just the questions, NOT the entire
test)as well as how you'd like to be referred to in the credits.
In the beginning there was a large, dense ball of matter at the center of
the universe. For reasons unknown and beyond the scope of this course,
this mass exploded, spewing matter outward. Eventually (derivation
skipped, but shown explicitly in the recommended readings) everything
cooled down, life developed and someone, somewhere created...
- no version number
- containing the original 100 questions from which
the following is all derived. Origin unknown. Format rough and crude and
showing obvious derivation from the purity test.
- version 2.0
- fabled and never seen by this author.
- version 2.1
- the first such version 2.1 (the two were created
independently) - no data available and may be mere rumor.
- version 2.1.pi^2
- Rumored to exist somewhere. This author saw a copy of
it once, but has since lost it somewhere on his desktop... Some of its was
utilized in the creation of version 3.1415
- version 2.1 (3-12-92)
- Prequel to the current edition. Essentially the
100 question version reformatted, made user-friendly and expanded to 200
- version 3.1415 (2-8-93)
- a further evolution of V.2.1. It contains 300
questions and was somewhat reworked and rewritten.
- version 4.thirds.pi.r.cubed (3-21-93)
- Originally this was supposed to be
the 3.1415 version with 100 ("have you done it recently") questions added
in order to normalize the test. Some testing revealed this to be largely
unnecessary and so much exterior input was received that a 400 question
version based on existing questions allowed this version to be released.
- version 5.x.cubed.minus.3.x.all.divided.by.2 (12-5-93)
- 100 new
questions, most of which came from people's comments to earlier versions of
the test now in circulation long enough to generate sizable response.
Notable changes include reformatting and reorganizing the questions into
more categories as well as the addition of the "ranking" section. Some
attempts were made at steering the question wording away from the "serious"
and toward the "humorous". For those wondering about the version number,
it represents the third Legendre polynomial - sorry, but there just aren't
all that many nerdy numbers starting with 5.
in two years of compiling this in the remoteness of upstate New York,
responses have come from as far east as the UK and as far west as
Singapore. If you are interested, both non-North Americans state that the
test isn't universal. They both complained that many questions were
culturally biased and others just didn't apply. If I were writing this for
sociological impact rather than for fun I suppose I would be upset by this
Roughly 2/3 of the responses I get are from educational institutions. I
assume distribution correlates roughly along those lines too, but have no
way of knowing for sure. I get roughly 3 or 4 responses a week.
The highest reported score is 83% and lowest is 15%. My own score when
last I checked was roughly 81% but of course I'm obviously skewed (in more
ways than one). If you can beat one of the high scores, let me know and
I'll FTP you a year's supply of Turtle Wax brand screen-cleaner (Lemon
Scent!) as well as all the adhesive, colored disk labels you can eat.
J. Bennett, Cornell U., Ithaca, NY.
Any questions or comments? Drop me a line at
Form version of the Nerdity Test by Philip Kizer
Converted to use the Armory scorer by John DuBois