How-To Geek

Week in Geek – The Free Swag Geek Contest Edition

Note: This article is part of our archive and is likely out of date.
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We’ve got too much swag sitting around, and decided to let you test your geek skills in an attempt to prove just how much of a geek you really are… and also get some free stuff.

got geek? mug got geek? shirt

How Do You Win?

This long string of numbers and letters contains a clue that will lead you to the answer. The first person to leave a comment with the correct answer wins a coffee mug and a t-shirt that we will ship to you free of charge. Just make sure to put in your valid email address so we can contact you.

Here’s a little starter clue to help you decode it: “I put a spell on you…”

Update: Looks like reader Preston won the contest with the first answer after only 12 minutes, congrats! Your swag is on its way!

The Geek Contest

This is just a little preview, we’re thinking of making the geek contest a regular thing – and perhaps giving away some interesting prizes worth a little more money. Make sure to stay tuned to our daily articles for more information.

Interesting Random Stuff We Found This Week

Here’s a few things that we found this week while wasting our time browsing the web:

Lifehacker Articles You Should Really Read

For those of you that aren’t aware, I’m one of the writers over at Lifehacker. Here’s a couple of articles that you should really check out written by myself and the other editors.

Latest Reviews at How-To Geek

Even more reviews posted this week, Mysticgeek has been hard at work!

Glary Utilities

The Good: Free, lightweight easy to use interface with One-Click Maintenance. Several maintenance tools all in one suite. Fast scanning with automatic restore points

Read the Full Review…

Advanced Audio Recorder

The Good: Easy to use, records high quality audio from any audio source sent into the PC. Offers full audio editing utility.

Read the Full Review…

Wondershare Video Converter Platinum

The Good: Fast conversion between most standard video formats, side by side video editing, support for HD


Read the Full Review…


The Daily Articles

Just in case you missed them, here’s the list of daily articles from the week.

Editor’s Weekly Note

Some people have noticed that we’ve had a lack of great registry hacks lately, and nobody can even remember the last Linux article we posted. In the near future, we’re going to have a lot more how-to goodness coming your way. More writers, more content, and more awesome geekery. Stay tuned.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 05/9/09

Comments (49)

  1. Preston

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  2. Steve Robillard

    decodes as Steve

  3. Steve Robillard
  4. HelixScanr

    The sequence contains letters as well as numbers. None of the letters past the letter ‘F’ So I figured it must be a HEX (hexadecimal). The past the sequence thru a HEX 2 ASCII converter.

    To get “”

    Now give me my prizes. (lol)

    cute btw!

  5. Gordy

    For the Week’s contest: this is the code for the first words & tune of Creedence Clearwaqter’s version of the song with the title: “I Put a Spell on You”

  6. Ashfame

    At present I am on the move but I guess it can be the hash output of a hashing algorithm with your clue “I put a spell on you…” as input.

  7. Mikado

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks! :)

  8. djweezy
  9. djweezy

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  10. Roberto! … but I’m totally clueless -___-

  11. jaredharley

    Woohoo! I like thinking contests!

    Also, I think Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    I haven’t tried the pepsi one, but I bet it does too.

  12. Dave Oliver
  13. Damien

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  14. Patrick


    the secret answer is Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  15. Richard K.

    Well I feel a little bit like rain man, so here goes:

    Lets hope I am not too much of a geek!

  16. Martin Rix

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  17. Richard K.

    I may be geeky, but also a little thick.

    The answer is : Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    The numbers decode to:

    And if I had read the page I know I would have got it right first time LOL

  18. Thinko

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  19. Hocus Pocus

  20. Daniel Malau

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  21. Alex
  22. Alex

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  23. foxy3ls


  24. foxy3ls


  25. Elena
  26. Elena

    i meant, the answer is at
    and it is “Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!”

    i’m just soo sleepy… nothing to drink coffee from :P

  27. Karthik

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    Hey! I got it…

  28. Andi

    Here goes the answer:

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  29. The Geek

    You guys are awesome.

    Next time I clearly need to make the contest a little more difficult =)

  30. GKI610

    I guess I have NO clue, so I won’t try to decode anything. Fun to watch the geeks do it, though

  31. GKI610

    Man, am I slow. Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!
    Could I get a coffee mug anyway? I need one.

  32. Rhys

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  33. Siddharth

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    Good one. Waiting for the next one!!

  34. Gregorio Espadas

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    I guess I’m not the forst one LOL! At least I have the pic of the mug :-)

  35. Jon
  36. Jon

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  37. Cuetzpallin
  38. Jill

    Sweet! You figured it out! Better leave a comment with the answer:

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    “I put a spell on you…” from Screamin’ Jay Hawkins

  39. stevetuf

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  40. Josh

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  41. youri

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    or should i say:
    4d6f756e7461696e20446577205468726f776261636b205375636b732120 ;)

  42. Rich B

    How the hell do you get Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!
    2f647564652d796f752d746f74616c6c792d776f6e2f ???

  43. wickasitha

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    is the correct answer

  44. Rob Lee

    Sweet! You figured it out! Better leave a comment with the answer:

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  45. Rob Lee

    Sweet! You figured it out! Better leave a comment with the answer:

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  46. Nuno Silva

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

  47. Andrew

    Shame i am too late i really wanted a T and Mug

  48. dcj2

    Mountain Dew Throwback Sucks!

    (But “Voltage” ain’t bad!)



    MD2: c37a6cb4f2dccc13ac70e072c9b5a057
    MD4: 28a142e442ce83694dc00fcbf204a8e3
    MD5: c5b9c4f4dd6631cb7d6f7637d080eebe
    CRC 8, ccitt, 16, 32 :

    CRYPT (form: $ MD5? $ SALT $ CRYPT):
    (form: SALT[2] CRYPT[11]):

    SHA1: f54f3dfd382b2749b041824bd6a588ad67f8e5bd

    Text :

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