SLIDESHOW

2009 Last-Minute Holiday Geek Gift Guide

You may not be able to avoid last-minute gift-getting, but these ideas may make it less painful.

On Your Mark, Get Set...

What's not to like about the last-minute holiday shopping rush, what with the last-minute crowds and picked-over shelves? A lot, you say? At this point, you may not be able to avoid the last-minute crush, but these ideas may help to ease your pain.

For more shopping advice, see:

* Geek Girl Gadgets: Holiday Gift Guide for Tech-Loving Ladies

* 15 Best Holiday Video Game Buys of 2009

* 2009 Holiday Laptop Gift Guide

* Holiday Camera Gift Guide

Gifting iTunes Store Purchases

To give a song, album, movie, or TV show episode (or previous season) for sale on iTunes, simply click the triangle next to the Buy button for any such item listed, select Gift this item, and then follow the instructions. You can't give iPhone apps, though.

Ye Olde Gifte Carde--The Classic Last-Minute Gift

They may be clichéd, but gift cards are still a practical and easy-to-find present. Many supermarkets carry an assortment of cards, and in some cases you can e-mail them or print them out. Also, Giftzip.com makes it easy to find gift e-cards from a number of popular retailers.

Do-It-Yourself Gifts

You may want to do something more than giving your brother a rubber band in place of a hands-free headset, but with a little creativity you can repurpose old, disused PC or gadget components into gifts. Old RAM chips make great keychains, for instance, and an Apple mouse can become an ashtray. Instructables and DIY Life are good places to start for ideas.

Photo: Courtesy of Xolile Myoyo

Accessorize Their Gadgets

Accessories for iPods, phones, and laptops are inexpensive, plentiful, and easy to find at practically any mall. iPhone/iPod docking stations are a popular option, as are cell phone car chargers and laptop bags.

Make a PC Mixtape

Fill up an unused USB flash drive with an assortment of legitimate software, free (legal!) music, and whatever else you want to toss in. It's perfect for the nerds in your life. See "A Downloader's Gift Guide" for ideas on what to include.

Charitable Donations

In lieu of an actual present, consider donating to a charitable organization in your gift recipient’s name. The gift recipient will feel good knowing that the money you would have otherwise spent on them will go toward a worthy cause, and in many (but not all) cases you may be eligible for a tax deduction. Also, check to see if your employer has a charitable-donation matching program.

For more shopping advice, see:

* Geek Girl Gadgets: Holiday Gift Guide for Tech-Loving Ladies

* 15 Best Holiday Video Game Buys of 2009

* 2009 Holiday Laptop Gift Guide

* Holiday Camera Gift Guide