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Geeky Girl We Love: Mia Kim of Popgadget

Last month we featured some of the cutest geeky couples and bachelors in the blogoshere, which left many of you wondering - what about the women? Fear not my fine friends, we were just saving the best for last. March is Women's History Month so I figured there was no better way to celebrate than to highlight some of the smartest, most creative and successful women on the internet.


Mia Kim is the founder and editor-in-chief of Popgadget, a lifestyle magazine that embraces technology as a regular and essential part of women's lives. Not only do I look up to her as a leader in the geeky girls movement, but I'm inspired by her business savvy and natural chicness. For part one of the interview, read more

Geeksugar: Tell us a bit about yourself. How did you become a blogger?
Mia: I went to NYU Film School with the idea that I was going to write and direct movies, and filmmakers are so in demand that I became.... a statistical programmer. But I didn't love programming, and wanted to do something that merged tech with something more creative so I went to NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program for my Master's. I graduated at the height of the dot com boom, and had fun jobs with monied startups and then of course, it all exploded and I ended up doing a much more traditional media job, as the new media director of a huge traditional entertainment company. I felt stifled again, and had to get out- so I started my own tech consulting company and dreamed up Popgadget. There were zero publications for women that had any significant technology coverage, online or offline, and that drove me crazy. After percolating in my head for several years, I just opened up a Blogger account and started Popgadget on my own in April 2004.

Geeksugar: What are your hobbies besides blogging?
Mia: Cooking, especially baking. Making an intricate dish is meditative for me and I dream now about going to culinary school someday. I will always be in love with movies so I like to go see everything. I still write screenplays, hope to do something with them someday. Mostly though, I'm obsessed with my dogs and pop culture so if I'm not working I can be found in my bedroom surrounded by a couple of naughty dogs, a stack of magazines (US Weekly perched on top, most likely), newspapers, a ton of books, and some homemade cookies. I love to travel, and my husband and I make plans all the time to do an all-around-the world trip just as soon as we have the time and the means.

Geeksugar: Tell me a little about the Popgadget team...
Mia: For about the first year of Popgadget, it was pretty much just me writing at night after work. Then a couple of amazing women, Camilla Beltrami and Regine Debatty (We Make Money Not Art), both in Italy at the time, started helping me out with the writing, just because they loved the idea and they both totally upped the game, and made me realize that we had something good. My sister, Hoyun Kim, who was a corporate lawyer then decided to help me turn Popgadget into a real business and she's now the publisher and we have two sites (Babygadget is the second), with at least seven more in the pipeline and nearly 20 writers from all across the world.

Geeksugar: How many hours are you online everyday?
Mia: I was going to say that I am rarely online for more than 10 hours a day because I just literally get eyestrain and have to unplug but that's not strictly true. My Treo is never off, even when I'm in a movie theater, and so I check emails, texts, and IMs pretty much 24/7. I also have a Verizon wireless broadband card so if I'm going to be away from my desk for any significant time, I will have my laptop with me and can get online without having to look for a wifi signal.

Geeksugar: Your first computer was a ...
Mia: I wish I could say I had serious geek cred and came out of the womb programming a Commodore 64, but no such luck - I think I was 20 when I got my first computer, and it was a tiny, and incredibly slow Gateway notebook that barely worked. It was a hand-me-down of several generations. I didn't own a brand-new computer until I got a Dell Latitude notebook which could hold a maximum 32 mb of RAM. I thought it was awesome and used it for 6 years. Since then, I probably average a new computer a year, alternating between a new notebook and a new desktop.

Geeksugar: What are three things you featured on the site that you really want?
Mia: Not a day goes by that I don't long for the Sony Vaio G1. It's only released in Japan (but available from Dynamism.com) and is just over 2 lbs, with the optical drive built-in.

The Kinetix Blender from Breville. Again it's not yet available in the US, but it moves around the ingredients in the jar so you can make smoothies without having to stop the blending to break up the fruit and ice.

The Just In Time watch. This is still in development, so you can't buy it yet, but it's a watch that not only tells time but uses GPS to track you and traffic conditions so it will let you know how long it's going to take you to get to your next appointment. I'm late for everything but I swear it's the traffic every time! I so need this.

Geeksugar: What is your favorite thing about your job? What is your favorite thing about Popgadget?
Mia: I love that my job is to be clued in to all things new and innovative- I'm a total neophile. I love reading the speculation about what's ahead. My favorite thing about Popgadget is that it's turned out to be exactly the thing that I had in my head about 10 years ago. I wanted something that melded together techie stuff with things that are silly, fun, sometimes even frivolous. Tech isn't a chore, it's fun and I wanted other women to be able to see that.

This is part one in a series of two interview with Mia Kim. Come back tomorrow to check out who Mia thinks are the sexiest geeky girls and guys on the internet!

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