The Geek Atlas: terrific tech shrines that every geek should see

This new book outlines the best places in the world for nerds and geeks to visit before they die. We selected some favorite places, including the HP Garage, the MIT Museum, and da Vinci's last home.

Akihabara Electronics District, Tokyo, Japan



In the aftermath of the Second World War, the area around the Sobu main railway in the Kanda district of Tokyo became the center of a thriving black market in radios and radio equipment such as vacuum tubes.

Akihabara's position close to the docks where goods were flowing into Japan up the Kanda River, and to what is now Tokyo Denki University (where electrical manufacturing was being taught), made its backstreets an ideal spot for trade in all types of electrical equipment.

Prior to the war, Akihabara was already a trading spot for many types of goods, but the explosion in demand for electronic gadgets made it what it is today: an enormous shopping area for everything from useless gizmos to the latest must-have electronics. Akihabara's shops range from enormous department stores on the main street, Chuo Dori Avenue, to backstreet stalls with secondhand goods and spare parts.

Photo courtesy of Jmho, Wikimedia Commons.

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