As we gear up for the 9th Pocket-lint Gadget Awards - the longest-running as well as one of the most respected gadget awards in the UK - we thought we would give you a quick rundown of how they work.

There are 10 categories this year and each category will have five nominations. 

Unlike some awards, where it’s either all public and no experts, all experts and no public, or just members of the editorial and advertising departments, we like to do things differently here at Pocket-lint.

This year, as in previous years, we are asking leading industry experts and you, the public, to help us decide the must-have gadgets from 2012.

Yep, we need your help to work out what the best gadgets are, and what better way to do that than to ask the people who have laid down the cash to buy them in the first place?

On 6 November we will ask you to start voting. The voting is short, easy, and allows you to vote for the products you want to win. We won’t ask you to vote for everything and we won’t ask you to vote for stuff you don’t know about.

Once your scores are in, we tally up those results and the product with the highest score is voted through. We think this is the fairest way of doing it because it means you aren't rating the products against each other, but simply on their own merit.

Your vote will count towards 10 per cent of the overall score for each gadget nominated.

Rather than just relying on what we think, we also ask our peers from the industry around the globe. In 2011 we got hundreds of votes from experts who know what they're talking about.

While many want to get involved, many of their bosses don’t let them for fear of Pocket-lint being a better publication; and these journalists, if seen supporting us, could lose their jobs (silly, we know). Because of that, this list of judges is what we call Black Ops. 

Votes of journalists from around the world will count towards 40 per cent of the overall score for each gadget nominated.

As a final piece to the puzzle we have an elite panel of judges in the UK that will get together and discuss the nominations over an evening, before rating them. They are rated in exactly the same way as the public and online votes, but we weight their opinions more heavily. These are the crème de la crème of the UK gadget press, tier zero if you will - trust us when we say they know what they are talking about.

This year’s judges so far include:

Mark Prigg - Technology Editor, The Daily Mail online

David Phelan - Freelancer for The Sunday Times, Independent, and Time Out

Chris Davies - Editor, Slashgear

Matt Warman - Consumer Technology Editor, Daily Telegraph

Martin Stanford - Presenter, Sky TV

Lucy Hedges - Multimedia Editor, Stuff magazine and TV presenter

Mat Smith - Associate European Editor, Engadget

Stuart Miles - Founder and CEO, Pocket-lint

Chris Hall - Editor, Pocket-lint

Ian Morris - Reviews Editor, Pocket-lint

The elite judges' vote will count towards 50 per cent of the overall score for each gadget nominated.

The nominations will be announced on 6 November and the awards will be made on 29 November in London.