I welcome you to GeeksMaga.com! My name is Andrew. I currently live in Seattle, the Emerald City in Washington State, USA. I started this blog to share stories, experience, humors, reviews on daily life of geeks. The definition of Geek itself is used to describe a person obsessed with certain hobby or intellectual pursuit. With the rise of computer industry helped many geeks to achieve great success, the perception of geeks began to change toward a positive thing. Being a geek is not always boring. It is not unusual for a geek to have many different interests, rich in spectrum as his/her knowledge grows. That is the main reason why I do not want to limit this blog to only certain few areas but I believe it will grow as time goes by.
The decision to start GeeksMaga came weeks before the Thanksgiving 2016. The idea actually has been in my mind since 2007. At that time, I had no strong reason to start committing myself into blogging. I realized that I have always been wanting to share the things that I have read, used, and experienced in my daily life. I have tried using social network channels but I feel it is somewhat different and limited in certain ways. Social network can be clouded by too many postings that may blur the intention of sharing things. On the other hand, since I have a full-time day job and family to take care of, it is virtually impossible for me to spend too much time on blogging. Hence my hesitation in the past before attempting to create this blog and to commit myself to it. The final push that I needed was an encouragement heard by me while watching a blogger’s channel at Youtube. Despite of the hardships and uncertainty about future, he kept doing what he likes to do the most: blogging. That day I made decision and started making plans and creating the blog. And then GeeksMaga.com was born.
During the early phase of GeeksMaga.com, I do hope that I could keep improving this blog. Please pardon some of the mess and the lack of fancy features. Also please pardon for any mistakes, typos and errors that you may find in this blog (my first language is not English and so far, I have been doing the editing process by myself). I will try my best to keep it “bugs free” but with my limited free time, I might not be able to spend too much time. At least, until I can fully dedicate myself to this blog (aka “my retirement from my IT day job”), I will keep blogging with limited resources. I chose GeeksMaga.com name to reflect what this blog is for. “Maga” is actually an abbreviation of “Magazine”, inspired from a local Japanese magazine that has been around in Seattle area since I moved to this city in late 90s. I also have started creating some of GeeksMaga’s sister blog sites for special interests which I am planning to introduce soon when they are ready to launch.
My life as a geek has been peculiar since it has a very broad spectrum. Below are some of the areas where I have been channeling my passions. In the meantime, I will keep adding more channels to my blog as the time goes by. Please enjoy GeeksMaga.com!
Some of GeeksMaga Channels:
Gadgets and Computers Channel:
Ever since my first encounter with early 8-bit computers in the 80s (It was an Atari and Casio), I found myself hungry of technology, gadgets and computers. Before I started my years at university, I had full working knowledge of few computer languages. By some miracles, I got myself a scholarship to enter the university. After that, I found myself spending the rest of my life working in IT world, surrounded by gadgets and computers at home and work. To me, “working” with gadgets and computers is not really considered as a job but I would rather call it as “playing” and “having fun” while at it.
Ever since I got my first PDAs (They were Sony CLIÉ and HP IPAQ) before getting into iPad and iPhone, I was intrigued by the creativity, mobility and attractiveness of many apps that made it possible for us to do things anywhere we go. The first idea of GeeksMaga was actually making this blog only for apps reviews. However, since I can’t possibly separate itself from my other passions as a geek, I eventually decided not to limit it. Perhaps my reviewing method/style is different than other review sites/blogs since my review would be from what typical usage of the app point of view and not trying to be just a pure critic of the apps. To me as a geek, fun and curiosity are our driving force to satisfaction.
The first electronic game that I got was a “Game & Watch” from Nintendo. It was a big thing in early 80s. And then when I got introduced to an arcade at shopping malls and movie theatres, It felt like I was in paradise. Shortly after that, the new era of console game arrived. The first console game that I played was an ATARI console game. And then there was a long absence of games during my mid and high school life as I was too focused on study (which kind of made me short of nerdy guy too). Later during my college time, I became more attracted to PC games such as the Sid Meier Civilization (first and second releases), Age of Empires (Ensemble Studios), etc. My exposure to other game platforms was quite limited until late 90s when I got myself a Nintendo, Super Nintendo and Sony PS1 (Unfortunately I skipped PS2). Also a brief encounter with some other consoles such as Sega Dreamcast, Nintendo GameCube, Gameboy, and PSP. Currently I am waiting for the right time to “upgrade” from Xbox 360/PS3/Nintendo Wii since I currently skipped Xbox one, PS4, Nintendo Wii U.
I have always been a big Anime and Sci-fi movies fan (despite of not knowing the genre name) ever since I watched a Japanese anime for the first time. It was called “Space Firebird 2772” (Osamu Tezuka et al.) and the epic “2001: A Space Odyssey” by Stanley Kubrick. I have been collecting Blu-Rays and DVDs
At elementary school, I was so eager to borrow books from my school’s library. Many of my first books were adventure books. Later at high school, I gained thirst of reading novels and computer books. At home, my books collections are 6 tall bookcases and many old books are still in the moving boxes. Lately I moved onto reading ebooks in my iPads and may have to start donating some of my book collections to local libraries and non-profit organizations. For many, having access to books perhaps it was taken for granted. However, for person who has thirst of knowledge like myself, books can be worth its weight in gold.
Comics & Cartoons Channel:
I like comics before even I could read alphabet. Actually they were my main driving force to learn how to read. My first comic was actually Tintin series by Herge. Most of comics that were given to me by my Dad were from Europe (Tanguy et Laverdure, Asterix, Trigan Empire, etc) which gave me very rich influence of European way of thinking process and humors. This experience was followed by Japanese comics which can be considered as a totally different genre. Later on in my life, I got some heavy exposures with American comics such as Dilbert, Far West, Peanuts, Adam@Home, DC Comics, etc. With my other passion (of drawing), I started drawing comic strip for my high school bulletin. Lately I have started a small side project on drawing comics to accompany my blogs. Hopefully I could find enough time to do that.
Drawing was always fun for me. Color pencils, crayons, water and oil paints, ink and pencils were the staple of drawing tools that helped me to unleash the passion. By some weird fate, instead of going to architecture/civil engineering, I became a software engineer. Hence my passion in art was put in the backburner. The only time I could find time in arts were by reading some books or articles over the internet, visiting online and offline museums and galleries, and sketching anything in my tablets, digitizers, and notebooks.
The big influence has been from my family. I used to listen to many different music genres since I was a kid. However, my biggest love of music has always been into Jazz, Latin (Bosanova) NewAge and Classical music. Not happy with just being a music listener, I have been collecting musical instruments. The first exposure to music instruments was when my Dad introduced me to harmonica, accordion, and a Yamaha Electone organ when I was just a small kid. I love synthesizers (digital or analog, software or hardware varieties). Kitaro and some other big names in NewAge music contributed to my love of NewAge genre. The love for music grows even deeper after I moved to Seattle as I found it by surprise that some famous musicians are from Seattle.
This rather expensive hobby was started from a humble beginning of my first radio. My parents somehow love audio equipments so much. I considered myself to be lucky that I was still able to listen to my Dad’s vinyl records collection. I did not realize that my Dad could be considered as quite an audiophile in the 70s as he bought some expensive HiFi equipments from Japan and USA. Today, I learn most of audiophile from my audiophile geek friends, reading some articles, and go to some HiFi equipments showrooms since I can’t afford such expensive Audio equipments (yet). For the time being, I have to be content with my entry level Studio Monitors and some good pair of studio headphones.
My love of Photography was started when I borrowed my dad’s SLR camera at the high school graduation vacation at Central Java. I was pretty much mesmerized by all the knobs and dials at the camera body as well as the focusing ring at the 50mm lens (it was a RICOH SLR film camera). However, I did not pursue photography any further for quite a while. Not until spring of 2005 when I got my first Canon DSLR camera and then eventually I “crossed over” to Nikon DSLR camera in 2007 to go with me for my first vacation to Japan. Lately I am into videography. When I thought photography hobby is already an expensive one, I realized that high-end video equipment’ cost can go even further stellar. For a hobbyist and amateur alike, they would be mostly out of reach. But that won’t hold me back from exploring this field since plenty of affordable good quality video equipment is available nowadays.
I have been collecting postage stamps from around the world since I was just a kid and my collection has grown rapidly when I moved to USA. I usually found myself need to read Scott’s stamp catalogs before I go to sleep at night. In this modern world where everything is on internet, letters and stamps may look very outdated or perceived as obsolete. While it is extremely difficult and can be rather expensive to collect rare stamps, only certain people can do such feat. What kept me in this interest is the desire to explore and to understand the story behind each of stamp, let alone the beauty of the art that was used to create the stamp’s illustration. To pursue philately for the price value of the stamp seems to be considered as the “other” practice of this area by some treasure hunters. I, for one, do not have such ambition since I am only doing this hobby as an entertainment form.
Foods, Drinks and Travel Channel:
I love tasting foods and drinks. Despite of not able to eat certain kind of foods, I keep looking for new places to try the foods. Travelling is something that I thought I only can do during my time off from work but lately I realized that visiting local places that I haven’t been able to go is also considered as travelling. I will launch a dedicated blog for travel related things very soon.