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We are no geeks, say IT users

Survey reveals they're really rough outdoors types - no really

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IT professionals are all action heroes who regularly flirt with danger just for the hell of it. They are happiest when surfing the leading edge of an avalanche or riding mountainous waves on the southern oceans. Far from being the timid anorak-wearing geeks that you bump into on the train in the morning, these square-jawed Rambo-types are "adventurous, sporty" people who relish the thrill of adventure and think nothing of a quick bungee jump before breakfast to loosen up the joints. Well, that's according to a survey published today by services behemoth EDS, which found that more than half of all those questioned had "dared to go mountaineering, sailing, water skiing and canoeing" while over a third have had the "courage" to go flying and gliding. (Computer games don't count - Ed.) Asked which personality they associated with the most, people mentioned explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes or ex-cricketer Imran Khan. More than 90 per cent of people refused to have anything to do with Bill Gates. "In the past IT people have always been tarred with the 'anorak' image", said Alan Stevens, CEO of EDS. "This report proves that IT employees prefer to spend their free time surfing the waves than surfing the Internet," he said. The report conflicts with an earlier study that revealed that four out of five students rejected careers in IT because they thought it was boring. But the report hasn't been welcomed by everyone. The Register managed to catch up with one IT manager after watching him absail down Canary Wharf in his lunch hour. "I'd have more faith in this kind of nonsense if they could at least get the date right on the press release," said the James Bond lookalike, commenting on the fact that the EDS press release was dated 8 March 1998. "Doesn't EDS know it's 1999 -- not 1998," he said. "Or is this their way of getting round the Millennium bug?" ®

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