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How Nerdy Is Your State? New Report Ranks America's Geekiest States

posted on by Lynzee Loveridge

The analysts at All Home Connections have put their own statistical nerdom to the test by analyzing mountains of data to reveal which state is truly nerd heaven.

In a new report, analysts looked at three key factors in each state: Geeky Interest Rank, Nerd Retailer Rank, and High Speed Internet Rank. They then combined each score with weighted metrics, and voila: nerd rankings. The Geeky Interest Rank was determined by how often certain key phrases were searched into Google by location. What qualifies as a geek-centered search? All Home Connections looked at searches for Star Trek, Star Wars, Harry Potter, cosplay, anime, Lord of the Rings, Magic the Gathering, Dungeons & Dragons, Game of Thrones and Warhammer 40,000.

Next, analysts looked at which states were most friendly to fandom and collectors by finding the number of pop culture conventions, comic book stores, video game retailers, and tabletop game stores per capita. The last, and lowest weighted metric, was the percentage of households with high speed internet.

The result is some pretty interesting data! The map above gives the overall skinny on the most nerd-friendly places to live but let's also look at some of the other results.

Which areas are the most anime-centric? It might surprise you, but despite being lower on the overall nerdy scale, the South and Midwest states have some serious anime fans. Anime was the top searched fandom in Kansas, Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina, and MISSISSIPPI. Of course, California was representing the otaku, too.

Which states have the most nerd-friendly retailer access? For that, you'll have to head to the Northeast. New Hampshire, the geekiest state overall, is also the the first in the retailer ranking. Massachusetts is second and Connecticut is third.

Which are the best states for geeks to live in overall, based on the above metrics? Here's the top 20!

  1. New Hampshire
  2. Vermont
  3. Maine
  4. Alaska
  5. Montana
  6. North Dakota
  7. Rhode Island
  8. Washington
  9. Wyoming
  10. Idaho
  11. Nevada
  12. Utah
  13. Ohio
  14. Connecticut
  15. Oregon
  16. West Virginia
  17. Delaware
  18. Hawaii
  19. New Mexico
  20. Kentucky

Some of the above states (I'm looking at you, Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, and Wyoming) aren't the first that come to mind when I think "nerd pop-culture hubs," but here's what the data shows. Alaska is #1 (NUMBER ONE) in Geeky Interest Rank. Residents are looking up their fandom interests more than anywhere else despite lower access to events and retailers (#19) and high-speed internet (#18). Montana is full of Trekkies and is ranked #4 in Nerd Retailers per capita. North Dakota is similar, ranking #7 in Nerd Retailers. Wyoming seems to be home to a fair amount of Magic the Gathering players and ranks #12 in retailers and geeky interests.

The wider report breakdown could also be useful for any fans trying to organize events or if you're looking for a great place to open your dream comic book store. For instance, there's a lot of people in Utah searching their geek interests (#2) but the state is sorely lacking retailers and/or fan events for its population (#39). Washington state has a similar problem (#38 in retailers vs #4 in geek interest). Meanwhile, California is home to some of the biggest nerd events each year from Anime Expo to San Diego Comic-Con, but it only ranked #40 on the list overall: #47 in Nerd Retailers and #32 in Geeky Interests.

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