50 Geeky Things to Do Before You Kick the Bucket

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Geeky bucket list
Everyone has a bucket list, a succinct summation of all the things they'd love to do before they shuffle off this mortal coil. Here at PCWorld, however, we're nerds, so we put our own spin on the idea.

Instead of climbing Everest, we try for the world record on Donkey Kong. Instead of seeing Machu Picchu, we build our own PCs.

We asked around the PCWorld office and polled our Facebook friends to assemble a list of the 50 best tech-oriented things to do before one's final hour. And some of the biggest geeks on the staff compiled the list's five categories: PCs, Mobile, Gaming, Hacking, and Tech Tourism.

Tell us what you would add or delete from the list in the comments area below, or on the PCWorld Facebook page.

Maingear Shift gaming desktop PC

Compiled by David Daw

  • Learn to program.
  • Try an open-source operating system.
  • Set my system so that it can dual-boot.
  • Teach a child to use a PC.
  • Teach a relative to fix their own PC.
  • Build a computer from spare parts. (Contributed on Facebook by Russel Walker)
  • Start my own Tumblr blog.
  • Set up an array of at least three monitors.
  • Build a media center PC.
  • Build a media center PC--for my car.

T-Mobile G2 mobile phone

Compiled by Armando Rodriguez

  • Root my phone.
  • Try every mobile OS at least once.
  • Build my own mobile app.
  • Have my smartphone battery last all day.
  • Control my house using my phone.
  • Complete a call on an iPhone without its cutting off.
  • Beat every level on Angry Birds and get three stars.
  • Find something to play on my phone that isn't an Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja, or Cut The Rope clone.
  • Develop a best-selling iPhone game.
  • Master the art of typing on a touchscreen (without using autocorrect).

War Games

Compiled by Nate Ralph

  • Beat Day[9] at Starcraft II.
  • Participate in a World of Warcraft raid.
  • Win a game of Solitaire.
  • Build a virtual-reality machine for first-person shooter games--and play a collection of the best FPS games ever created in it. (Contributed on Facebook by Peter Drake)
  • Beat a Metal Slug game on one quarter.
  • Beat Minesweeper in under a minute.
  • Participate in (or host) a LAN party.
  • Beat Doom II.
  • Create my own Starcraft and/or first-person shooter level.
  • Participate in a Dungeons and Dragons campaign.

Hacking a TiVo DVR

Compiled by Nick Mediati

  • Join a hackerspace.
  • Learn how to solder.
  • Program in BASIC.
  • Learn to use Arduino.
  • Make a wearable PC--or maybe a hackable wristwatch.
  • 3D-print something.
  • Build a robot.
  • Build a robot out of Lego bricks.
  • Install Android on every gadget imaginable.
  • Create a Kinect hack.

A Trip to the Moon
Tech Tourism

Compiled by Alex Wawro

  • Become a space tourist.
  • Stage a gruesome scene for the Google Street View truck.
  • Track down a geocache and then leave my mark.
  • Visit the Computer History Museum in Silicon Valley.
  • Make a pilgrimage to Athens and see the Antikythera Mechanism.
  • Take a geek cruise to kill kobolds in the Caribbean, or to talk Macs over Merlot as I cruise up the Pacific coast.
  • Break into Area 51. Bonus points: Break out of Area 51.
  • Fly a jetpack.
  • Visit the Large Hadron Collider. (Contributed on Facebook by Tracey Pritchett)
  • Experience zero-gravity flight aboard a Boeing 727 vomit comet.

Who Are These Geeks and Nerds?

David Daw is a PCWorld intern covering everything from 3D printing to the Egyptian revolution. He's also a grad student at San Francisco State University. Find him on Twitter @davidhdaw.

Nick Mediati is PCWorld's resident security/OS/browser nerd. He also runs PCWorld's GeekTech blog. Catch him on Twitter @dtnick.

Nate Ralph covers desktops and the shiny bits inside them. When he isn't testing the latest tech, he can usually be found soaking up rays on the sunny shores of Azeroth, blasting Internet spaceships in Eve Online, or futzing with the console blockbuster du jour. Keep tabs on his exploits via Twitter @NateRalph.

Armando Rodriguez is a PCWorld intern focusing on news and reviews of Android phones, apps, and tablets. Catch him on Twitter @megapenguinx.

Alex Wawro, editorial assistant in the PCWorld Test Center, investigates everything from smartphone security to online dating scams. Track him down on Twitter @awawro.

This article was created with the assistance of Patrick Miller and Albert Filice of PCWorld, as well as some of our friends on the PCWorld Facebook page.

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