Anti-social geeks

I arrived yesterday in Santa Clara for the SDWest conference. This being my first time to the Silicon Valley, it came as quite a big deal to drive down Great American Parkway, past the McAfee campus, past the Yahoo campus, past Netgear and WebEx. A lot of big names in the tech industry make their home here.

My awe of the Silicon Valley is not really the point of this post. What really struck me was how generally anti-social geeks are. At the lunch today at the conference, they had a hall for of tables, 8 chairs per table. Not sure why, but I would have expected people to sit together and get to know each other a little more. Maybe talk about what they’re working on.

Call me completely surprised to see virtually every table in the hall had one, maybe two, people sitting at it. What is it about out personalities that makes us so afraid to talk to other people, especially people that are really interested in the same things that we are?