10 killer tech exec costumes

Throw a fright into your trick-or-treaters this year by dressing - and acting - like one of these titans of technology

Shudder! 10 killer tech exec costumes
Credit: ITworld/Steve Traynor

Halloween is coming up soon, so you’d better start thinking about what or whom you’re going to dress up as. We’d like to suggest that you consider going off the board, ignoring the usual (lame) ghost, witch or pirate costume, and dress up as something more inspired and timely - like the founder or CEO of a big tech company!

Imagine how scared trick-or-treaters will be when you answer the door dressed as Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer (yikes!) or Zynga’s Mark Pincus (shiver!). ITworld has put together this list of tips for dressing up as - and acting like - 10 famous tech execs. Happy haunting!

Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO
Credit: REUTERS/Robert Galbraith
Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO

What you’ll need: Bald wig, an oversized button down shirt, dress pants and shoes, a pillow, a spray bottle full of water and lots of Red Bull.

Instructions: Affix bald wig, put on shirt over pillow, add pants and shoes, spray water under your armpits and around your neck and drink all the Red Bull. Greet everyone with an overenthusiastic handshake and a wild look in your eyes (which shouldn’t be hard if you drank enough Red Bull). Repeatedly chant “Developers” throughout the night.

To go the extra mile: If you spot anyone dressed as Tim Cook, loudly declare that there’s no chance that a Tim Cook costume will get any significant market share.

Larry Ellison, Oracle CEO
Credit: REUTERS/Stephen Lam
Larry Ellison, Oracle CEO

What you’ll need: Fake beard and mustache, a navy blue skipper cap, a blue knit polo shirt, khaki pants, white socks and blue canvas sneakers.

Instructions: Put on the beard, cap, shirt, pants, socks and sneakers and inform anyone who confuses you with the Skipper from Gilligan’s Island that, in addition to being the CEO of the world’s 3rd largest software company - and the 8th richest person in the world - you are also a two time America’s Cup winner.

To go the extra mile: Agree to attend a Halloween party, then blow it off at the last minute, saying you need to watch your boat race.

Dick Costolo, Twitter CEO
Credit: REUTERS/Albert Gea
Dick Costolo, Twitter CEO

What you’ll need: Bald wig, glasses with black frames, Armani suit, fake arrow-through-the-head, posterboard and black marker.

Instructions: Put on bald wig, glasses, suit and arrow through the head. Use marker and posterboard to make a sign that says “We only have 140 pieces of candy to give out” and affix to front door. When trick-or-treaters arrive, tell them a joke and remind them about your upcoming IPO before giving out candy.

To go the extra mile: Hire a guy with long, curly red hair to stand next to you and introduce him as Carrot Top, “the Vivek Wadhwa of comedians”.

Sergey Brin, Google co-founder
Credit: REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Sergey Brin, Google co-founder

What you’ll need: Fake beard and mustache, dark blazer, white dress shirt, charcoal gray pants, black sneakers and Google Glass. If you can’t get a pair of Google Glass, try 3D printing a fake pair.

Instructions: Put on fake beard, blazer, shirt (leave the top 3 buttons unbuttoned), pants, sneakers and Glass. Be sure to remove your wedding ring if you wear one. Ask trick-or-treaters, “Are you feeling lucky?” before letting them reach blindly into a bag to pull out a piece of candy. Send them off by saying, “Do No Evil.”

To go the extra mile: Cover you hands with ketchup and tell kids you just killed off another popular Google application.

Marissa Mayer, Yahoo! CEO
Credit: REUTERS/Stephen Lam
Marissa Mayer, Yahoo! CEO

What you’ll need: Blonde wig and 30 different designer outfits, each a shade of purple, as well as shoes, jewelry and handbag.

Instructions: One month before Halloween, announce to your friends that you will be dressing as Marissa Mayer each day of October, wearing a different one of those designer outfits. On Halloween you’ll reveal your final choice of costume. If that approach worked for unveiling a new Yahoo! logo, it should work for this too. NOTE: Since we’re already well into October, you may have to save this for next year.

To go the extra mile: Have a friend or date pretend to be a photographer shooting you for a profile in Vogue.

Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO, Tesla CEO
Credit: REUTERS/Bret Hartman
Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO, Tesla CEO

What you’ll need: A space suit, name tag, white blazer, striped dress shirt, dark slacks and dress shoes.

Instructions: Put on the space suit and affix the name tag to the front with “SpaceX” written on it. When trick-or-treaters arrive, explain your role as SpaceX CEO. Halfway through Halloween night, change out of the space suit and into the blazer, dress shirt, slacks and shoes and tell everyone who comes to the door that you’re reprising Musk's cameo in Iron Man 2.

To go the extra mile: Great trick-or-treaters with a remote controlled toy car labeled Tesla. Keep a fire extinguisher handy, you know,  just in case.

Tim Cook, Apple CEO
Credit: REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach
Tim Cook, Apple CEO

What you’ll need: Wire rim glasses, dark dress shirt, jeans, ink pad and paper.

Instructions: Crop your hair closely, put on shirt and jeans (leave your shirt untucked). Give trick-or-treaters a choice between a bowl of cheaper, more colorful candy (Skittles, M&Ms, Life Savers) and a bowl of more expensive candy (Godiva chocolates). Tell kids choosing the more expensive candy that they'll need to be fingerprinted using the ink pad and paper before they can access it.

To go the extra mile: Hire Jony Ive to give the Halloween decorations on your front stoop a flatter, more minimalist design.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO

What you’ll need: Zip-up hoodie, jeans, sneakers, a pile of Monopoly money and a thick stack of papers covered in Chinese, Greek or some other equally confusing-looking writing.

Instructions: Tousle your hair, put on the hoodie, jeans and sneakers and have the Monopoly money spilling out of your pockets. Whenever trick-or-treaters come to your door, hand them the stack of papers and insist they read and agree to your Terms of Candy Service before you’ll give them a treat.

To go the extra mile: Hire a set of tall, strapping, preppy twin young men in crew outfits to follow you around demanding a portion of your candy.

Mark Pincus, Zynga founder
Credit: REUTERS/Jim Urquhart
Mark Pincus, Zynga founder

What you’ll need: Sunglasses, baseball cap, t-shirt, flannel shirt, jeans, fake eyebrows and sideburns and a pad of sticky notes.

Instructions: Put on the cap, sunglasses, shirts and jeans. Affix fake eyebrows and sideburns. Write “One Candy Buck” on each sticky note and require trick-or-treaters to win them by completing tasks around your house. Award extra bucks for social interactions. At the end of the night, let them trade in candy bucks for real candy.

To go the extra mile: Set up a card table with Scrabble on the front stoop and let trick-or-treaters play each other for additional candy bucks.

Meg Whitman, Hewlett-Packard CEO
Meg Whitman, Hewlett-Packard CEO

What you’ll need: Blonde wig, string of pearls, lady’s pants suit, a bunch of HP deskjet ink cartridges and a green card.

Instructions: Put on wig, pearls and pants suit. Fill a bowl with the ink cartridges to hand out instead of candy (gotta promote the brand!). Be prepared to show the green card to anybody asks whether your housekeeper is in the country legally.

To go the extra mile: Print up a replica campaign sign from Whitman’s failed 2010 California gubernatorial campaign and be prepared to recite your (her) positions on the big issues.

Related: 10 tech blockbusters (just waiting to be made)