June 28th, 2007 5:33 pm | by Adrian Chen News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Politics, Business

The Nerd Vote: I Can Has Steve Novick?

I Can Has senate
If just nerds constituted the Oregon electorate, we could skip the election and give Steve Novick his Senate seat right now, along with the crown fashioned from 8-bit Nintendo controllers that would have to accompany the office in such a world. Either Novick has stumbled upon some sort of play book (wiki?) detailing how to capture the nerd vote, or--more likely--he's also one: the few, the proud, the frail. First, Novick secured a (somewhat facetious) endorsement from funnyman John Hodgman, who gained a cult nerd following for his portrayal of the "PC" in Mac's ubiquitous "Get a Mac" ads. Now Novick has trebled his nerd cred, at least, by sponsoring an image macro contest, announced this week on his MySpace page (hey Steve, why aren't we friends?).

For those who spend more time, say, working or having sex than on the Internet, the concept of an "image macro" needs some explaining. Here's Steve Nerdvick:
So, I'm looking to tap into the creativity of all of you out there. I've decided to have a contest to see who can design the funniest/best/whateverest Image Macro of yours truly.

Feel free to use the stock photos in my photo album as a start, or other photos if you like, and if you're not sure what exactly an "Image Macro" is, go ahead and look at the relevant Wikipedia page.

Browsing said Wikipedia page, you'll learn that an image macro is nothing more than "a picture with text superimposed." But that simple idea has spawned a hugely popular Internet phenomenon, complete with its own dialect of cutesy pidgin English and a host of image macro websites (the most well-known being icanhascheezburger.com). For image macro virgins, it can be hard to wrap your head around the idea--part Internet trend, part subculture--and you might be kind of freaked out first. But stick with it because macros offer a near-endless source of entertainment once mastered. It's like sex in that way, only with a lot lower chance of developing serious health problems. This explains both why I am extremely healthy and why my entry for Novick's image macro contest is unbeatable:


Note: Check out Slate.com's slide show essay on Lolcats, arguably the most popular image macro variety. Wait, did I seriously just write that sentence?
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