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A UK report commissioned by chip giant Intel has claimed that the PC has finally stopped being a Nerd tool and has become a "lifestyle accessory" for millions of users. The Gallup report surveyed 1,000 people on their attitudes to the use of the PC and the Nerd-word. The survey reported that 90 per cent of the respondents no longer considered PCs the domain of experts, academics and boffis. They considered PCs are now everyday items like TV sets. Education was cited as the main reason for the increase in popularity with 36 per cent claiming they improved childrens' education, while 34 per cent said PCs are now easier to use. Nearly half of the respondents use PCs at both home and work, said Gallup. In the age group 16-44, this rises to over 60 per cent. But men are still more addicted to PCs than women, with figures of 52 per cent and 44 per cent using PCs in this way. This was reflected in the figures for the word Nerd. Women (32 per cent) were nearly twice as likely as men (17 per cent) to say that their partners were "always a Nerd" or "sometimes a Nerd". Fifty seven per cent consider the word Nerd to be insulting, with the average number of Nerds known by respondents to be four. However, one in 20 surveyed said they knew 13 or more Nerds. Gallup said that 44 per cent of those surveyed surf the WWW for general information. ®

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