Understanding Geeks – A field guide to your tech staff.

You need your tech department like never before. But often, decoding what the members of your IT staff are actually saying–and getting them to understand what you want–just leaves you confused and frustrated. To nontechnologists, IT isn’t just a different discipline; it’s a foreign culture. So we’ve put together a guide to that culture, with help from developers, programmers, and tech-support staff members.

We also consulted two über-geeks: Michael Lopp, a veteran Silicon Valley engineering manager and the author of Managing Humans, and J.D. Frazer, who analyzes techie culture in his Web comic User Friendly. (Geek, by the way, is no longer an insult–it’s an honorific.) Here is everything you need to enter your company’s dimly lit IT lair with confidence. Just make sure to knock first.

Adam Bluestein

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