Rants In Our Pants

Who’s Steve Jobs? And What the Hell is a Dongle?

A new survey finds most people are even less tech-savvy than you’d think. From saying Steve Jobs is an athlete to believing a dongle is a sex toy, these candid answers crack us up.

By (@JRRaphael)

January 15, 2010

Excuse me, does anyone know who this Steve Jobs character is that I keep hearing about? I’d really like to know.

Hang on — I’m only kidding. Of course I know that Stevie-boy’s the new-liver-sportin’, Harry-Potter-lookin’ head of that trademark-snatchin’ produce company. But as it turns out, not everyone shares that knowledge.

Twenty percent of Brits have never even heard of Jobs, according to a recent survey conducted by Lewis PR. Another 20 percent think he’s a football player, and 10 percent believe Mr. Apple himself is actually the leader of a trade union.

Microsoft’s main man fared only a bit better in the poll: Three percent of people surveyed said Bill Gates was a comedian, and 2 percent suspected he was one of the “Great Train” robbers from England’s 60s-era heist.

Some other noteworthy findings:

  • 9 percent of people thought Internet founder Sir Tim Berners-Lee was the head of British security service MI5; 6 percent thought he was an Arctic explorer; 5 percent thought he was the first British astronaut in space.
  • 6 percent thought a VHD (virtual hard disk) was a sexually transmitted disease.
  • 10 percent thought a wireless dongle was a sex toy.
  • 4 percent thought phishing was “an angling method used by Eskimos.”

The actual survey stops there, but we wanted more. So we made up the following additional results:

  • 17 percent of people thought Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak was the name of a Teletubby.
  • 12 percent thought Google co-founder Sergey Brin was that guy from the Brawny paper towels.
  • 8 percent said Google co-founder Larry Page was the character played by Jack McBrayer on “30 Rock.”
  • 44 percent believed packet-sniffing was something only sexual deviants did.
  • 31 percent thought Chief Yahoo Jerry Yang was a soft-core porn star. (To be fair, we hear he is considering it.)
  • 36 percent totally missed the boat on what an external floppy was. Of those people, however, only 41 percent said they’d be disappointed with 5.25 inches.
  • 14 percent of people thought All Things Digital columnist Kara Swisher was a new kind of toilet-cleaning system.
  • 7 percent thought Digg founder Kevin Rose was a homoerotic gospel singer (whatever that means).
  • 27 percent said Twitter co-founder Biz Stone was an updated version of that expensive language-learning software.
  • 10 percent said they weren’t positive what daisy-chaining meant, but they were pretty sure they tried it once in college.
  • 19 percent said they’d experienced a master-slave configuration, even though they’d never seen the inside of a computer.
  • 100 percent thought celebrity blogger Perez Hilton was a no-talent ass-clown. Hey, sometimes the people do get it right.

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