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I agree with you and I think it is an interesting question.
The book was made by a geek, for geeks and has geek appeal. There is nothing inherently geeky once you strip away the presentation. I think it is all about presentation though. People are busy, caught up in their lives and intimidated by things out of their bailiwick, especially things that might appear to be complicated. Concepts like calorie counting, portion control have an onus all of their own.
I think people already are using "The Hacker's Diet" or core elements of it, just under another name with another coat of paint.
I've heard that a number of weight control sites and programs take averages of weights and chart weights on graphs, advising people to look at the trend, not the individual weights. Weight Watchers have people count "points", which is basically counting calories.
There are a lot of success stories for Weight Watchers and people using portion control out there, which is the core of The Hacker's Diet, IMHO. I like this youtube channel. It collects "Joy Fit Club" segments from one of those morning talk shows. The success stories are inspiring and most of them are about people doing portion control, instead of some crazy pop diet: http://www.youtube.com/user/Aylinbx
A couple of months ago I googled one day for success stories with the Hacker's diet and I found hers (unfortunately, there really is not a lot to find about people who use the Hacker's Diet).
On the same day I found her website, I read someone else mentioning Sparkpeople, which I joined a couple of days later.
I sometimes wonder; if more people would get the concept of the Hacker's Diet trend numbers, would it be more popular? Or do they get it, but think it's to geeky?
When I read it, I knew for the first time in my life that I would loose weight and keep it of. I still think it's a brilliant book.
I found another nice Hacker's Diet success story on the web. I thought others might find it inspiring: