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Chris Pirillo

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Chris Pirillo
Chris Pirillo speaking at Gnomedex in 2007 photograph by Kris Krug.jpg
Pirillo speaking at Gnomedex in 2007
Born (1973-07-26) July 26, 1973 (age 47)
Alma materUniversity of Northern Iowa
OccupationYouTube partner, magazine columnist, tech expert for CNN,[1] book author, conference organizer, public speaker, owner of a blogging network and social community, provider of video content, vlogger
Years active1996–present
  • Gretchen Hundling (1998-2004)[citation needed]
  • Ponzi Black (2006–2009)[2]
  • Diana Morales (2012–present)[3]
ChildrenJedi Pirillo
(born September 14, 2014)[4]

Christopher Joseph Pirillo (born July 26, 1973) is the founder and CEO of LockerGnome, Inc., a network of blogs, web forums, mailing lists, and online communities. He spent two years hosting the TechTV television program Call for Help[5], where he also hosted the first annual Call-for-Help-a-Thon. He now hosts videos on several Internet sites, including CNN, YouTube, Ustream, and his own website.[6]

Early life and education[edit]

Pirillo was born on July 26, 1973 in Des Moines, Iowa to Judy and Joe Pirillo. He has two younger brothers, Adam and Benjamin. He studied at the University of Northern Iowa, where he majored in English education, eventually graduating with an English degree. For a short time, he was a 7th grade English teacher at Coke R. Stevenson Middle School in San Antonio, Texas.

Ever since Pirillo was introduced to technology as a child he has been fascinated with the evolution and different aspects of computing. He frequently records videos on YouTube about various tech-based and geek-related topics.


Pirillo ran a 24/7 live video feed from his home office via Ustream until April 23, 2013.[7] His streams, now broadcast live on YouTube, focus on software, hardware, news, reviews, computers, iOS applications, operating systems, gaming, and other technology-related topics and events.

LockerGnome was the first website that Pirillo registered back in October 1996. However, he states that only the real beginning of LockerGnome is now, since the community has grown rapidly since 1996. Pirillo runs several online communities. His LockerGnome blogging network has over 100,000 members. Geeks, his Ning-based social network, has over 24,000 users.[8] LockerGnome began as a technology mailing list in 1996, offering tips and tricks for operating systems and applications, software suggestions (with an emphasis on public domain and shareware software), and web site recommendations.[9] Several mailing lists are now provided, offering technology advice and tips[10] and other content syndicated from LockerGnome's blogs for IT Professionals.[11] A web forum for help with and discussions about technology was run from 2002 to 2015.[12]

Pirillo's advocacy of new technology went as far as the creation, along with Jake Ludington, of a BitTorrent server at "to help Microsoft get Windows Vista Beta 2 in users' hands" in 2006.[13] According to Information Week, Microsoft had "reported problems in delivering Beta 2 electronically ... recommending on its own Web site that users order the DVD rather than download the 3.5-4.4GB file".[13] Microsoft sent a cease and desist e-mail, and the pair complied.[13]

In 2001, Pirillo launched Gnomedex[14], a yearly conference covering all aspects of art, science, social media, blogs, and new and emerging technologies and concepts, such as Web 2.0. Gnomedex was held originally in Iowa, but moved to Seattle as of Gnomedex 5. Gnomedex 10 was considered to be the last major conference, which was held from August 19 to 21 of 2010, but in November 2011 it was decided that it would be rebooted for one more year. It was held in conjunction with the Seattle Interactive Conference. Pirillo then went on to announce that Gnomedex 10 would be the last major conference he would host.

In January 2010, he began hosting "Help Desk with Chris Pirillo", a weekly live video call-in show on Microsoft's Channel 9 web site.[15] Since early 2011, Pirillo has been one of the featured "CoolHotNot Tech Xperts", along with John C. Dvorak, Jim Louderback, Dave Graveline, Robin Raskin, Dave Whittle, Christian Burhus, Steve Bass, and Cheryl Currid. At CoolHotNot's web site, he shares his "Loved List" of favorite consumer tech products, along with a "Wanted List" and a "Letdown List".[16]

Pirillo in 2008

In 2012, Pirillo started a subscription-based service called Gnomies that offered advice to upcoming entrepreneurs who wanted an insight on how to get an idea or company launched professionally online. The service also offers extra perks such as a private Minecraft and TeamSpeak server. As of 2013, Gnomies had 1000+ members.

Another project is the "Pirillo Vlogs", started in April 2012, that both Diana and himself upload daily to the LockerGnome YouTube channel. These daily ten-minute vlogs are made to provide subscribers with a glimpse into his personal life and social connections. Starting in August 2013, Chris also added a new segment called "Pirillo Picks" to his line-up, a weekly look into geeky products that he finds or is given, furthering "Geek Culture".

In 2013, Pirillo staged VloggerFair, a meetup event for YouTube's vlogging community in Seattle. The fair was an attempt to bring vloggers and the vlogging community together. Among the event's sponsors were YouTube and Intel, and approximately 1300 people attended the event. Pirillo both hosted and vlogged at the fair. Pirillo announced plans for a second VloggerFair in 2014.

Pirillo is the author of several books, including Poor Richard's E-mail Publishing, Online! The Book with John C. Dvorak and Wendy Taylor, and several ebooks which can be purchased at GnomeTomes.[17][18]

As of 2014, Pirillo has over 340,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel,[19] and total video views of over 179,000,000. He has over 149,000 followers on Facebook and over 133,000 Twitter followers. He also launched a new YouTube channel in early 2014 called LockerGnome's Geek Lifestyles, which is going to be based on technology and geeky content only. This channel will not feature the Pirillo vlogs.

In March, 2015, Pirillo announced he was resuming Gnomedex, but providing more of a fair or festival experience than as a single-track conference.[20]

In March, 2019, Pirillo wrote on Twitter that he had joined Intel as the Chief Community Advocate for their graphics division.[21]

Personal life[edit]

Pirillo currently lives in Issaquah, Washington,[22] with his wife and child.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Chris Pirillo Archive. Retrieved 2010-10-15.
  2. ^ "Chris & Ponzi's Wedding". 2006-12-10. Retrieved 2013-11-20.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Rich Analytics for Chris Pirillo.
  7. ^ The live feed will be down.
  8. ^ Geeks - Reviews, News, and How To! Archived 2013-06-10 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 2013-05-25.
  9. ^ "About"
  10. ^ "Advice and Tips".
  11. ^ "IT Professionals feed".
  12. ^ "Lockergnome Help Forum Closure".
  13. ^ a b c Gregg, Keizer (June 15, 2006). "Microsoft Shuts Off Vista Torrent". Information Week. Retrieved September 17, 2011.
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Help Desk with Chris Pirillo on Channel 9 Live (Pilot Episode)". Channel 9. MSDN.
  16. ^ "CoolHotNot Tech Xperts Team". Archived from the original on 2011-09-02. Retrieved 2011-09-01.
  17. ^ "Poor Richard's E-mail Publishing" Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine.
  18. ^ "Online! The Book" Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine.
  19. ^ Chris Pirillo's channel on YouTube
  20. ^ "Chris Pirillo is bringing Gnomedex back in Seattle — but don't call it a conference". GeekWire. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  21. ^ "Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  22. ^ "How's Vista? Analysts Say Fine; Users Annoyed". Park City Daily News. Bowling Green, KY. Associated Press. July 15, 2007. Retrieved January 1, 2011.

External links[edit]