Lord of the NERDS

Lord of the NERDS

Nerdify your life!

Inventions Made by Kids and Teens

                Yes, we’ve heard of child prodigies and geniuses but very few are said about kid inventors. Apparently, there’s a whole bunch of them and some of their inventions are widely used today, you wouldn’t even believe they were invented by children. These are the incredible whiz kids who just proved that the youth is not wasted on the young when they invented these nifty things:

 

 

Under Water Walkie-Talkie

                Richie Stachowski went snorkeling in Hawaii with his Father when he was just 11 years old. Thrilled at the things he saw underwater, he wanted to talk to his dad about it while they were underwater but it was impossible at that time. So when they went back to shore, one of the divers commented that no one has invented a device for talking underwater. Richie then set out to become that inventor. Using his own money, Richie built a prototype and pitched it to Toys R Us. The company ordered 50,000 units and the product took off. Richie is now the Founder and President of a company boasting about a half-million dollars in annual revenues. 

 

Trampoline

                The favorite backyard toy for most suburban household is the trampoline which was invented by a 16-year old boy named George Nissen. With stretched canvas and a pile of materials he took from the local junk yard, George began creating his first trampoline. He continued to refine the design with the help of his gymnastics coach, Larry Griswold. They began using nylon instead and thus the trampoline was invented and became popular ever since.

 

The Ocean Cleanup Array

                19-year old Boyan Slat invented the Ocean Cleanup Array that provides an efficient way to clean up an entire gyre in no more than 5 years. By fitting a network of booms around garbage patches, the estimated plastic waste that could be removed from the oceans using his invention is equals to 7,250,000 tones. The design is a result of a school paper by Slat on ocean remediation. His work was awarded the Best Technical Design 2012 at the Delft University of Technology. Later in 2012, Boyan presented his already improved concept at TedXDelft 2012 and is now being used by the Ocean Cleanup Foundation.

 

Braille

                The Braille system has been around for ages but not a lot of people know that it was invented by a teenager. Louis Braille came up with a system that would allow blind people to read when he was just a teen in the 1800s. At the time, he was studying in Paris at The National Institute for Blind Youth when he came up with what we now know as Braille. This system is now used all over the world.

 

Popsicle

                The invention of the Popsicle is actually just a funny accident made by eleven year old Frank Epson in 1905. One cold night, Epperson left powdered soda, water and a stick outdoors. He awoke the next day and the Popsicle was born. Now, hundreds of thousands of these delicious accidents are sold and enjoyed every year.

The Moral of The Story Is….

 

 

                Life is like a movie, they say. The only difference is we don’t get to have awesome soundtracks and sometimes, it doesn’t end the way we want. I guess the thing that draws us to watch movies is because we can relate to the stories even though some films are so unlikely to happen in real life. And also, movies can teach us a thing or two about life and how to live it well. In my years of watching films of different genres, I have learned a lot of important moral lessons that I’m now going to share you with you. Here are some of my favorite movies and the lessons I’ve learned from them:

 

1. Bruce Almighty – Oh I am such a big fan of Jim Carrey and this movie did not only make me laugh so hard, it also taught me a lot of valuable lessons. The film is about a TV reporter who blames God for everything bad that happens to him. He complains that God is doing a poor job so God appeared to him and made him do his job. It was great at first being in control of everything but then the responsibility tied up to that is much too heavy for Bruce to handle. 

 

MORAL LESSON:  God is not a wish granting factory and everything that happens in your life, it happens for a reason. If you’re not having problems, then you are pretty much dead. Also, God wouldn’t let you go through so much pain if He does not think that you’re strong enough to handle it. That movie also showed me the importance of being happy with what you have instead of getting depressed over things that you don’t. If it’s for you, you will get it but if it’s not, something better will always come along. And most important lesson that Bruce Almighty taught me is to always be a miracle and do random acts of kindness to others.

 

        2. The Pursuit of Happyness  - This movie starring Will Smith is about a salesman who undergoes defeats, challenges and hardship (his wife leaving him, being rendered homeless) to secure a better living for his son. Throughout his journey, he never once gave up, and stood firm to his goals.

 

 MORAL LESSON: There are countless lessons you can learn from this movie but gist is to never ever give up on your dreams. This movie is based on the life story of Chris Gardner which makes this movie even more inspirational. He’s a living proof that the only thing that stands between you and your goal is your fear of losing. This movie also teaches how love can make us do impossible things and how far a person can go to protect his love ones.

 

3. Stranger Than Fiction – This movie is very fitting for readers and writers alike. It’s about a systematic tax man named Harold Crick who have lived his entire life according to numbers. But one day, he starts hearing narrations of his everyday actions and he realizes that he’s a character is someone’s novel. He soon learns that the writer who’s working on his story is known for killing their main character. With his time running out and his life in disarray, Harold struggled to postpone his imminent death in the hands of an author.

 

MORAL OF THE STORY: Harold Crick has a good paying job and a pretty nice apartment. Normally we would think he has his life together and he thinks so too until he realized he’s about to die. Death changes people. Knowing that you don’t have enough time to laugh, live and love more people will definitely make you go your way to do the things you’ve been meaning to do before you die. If we all knew when we are going to die, none of us would stay at the jobs we hated and we would all just live the way we always want. Life is short and we can only do so much for ourselves and for others to make our lives worthwhile so we might as well do it while we still can. 

 

The World of SpongebobSquarepants: The Comedy, the Fame and the Fans

 

 

                Probably the second most popular cartoon character next to Mickey Mouse, SpongebobSquarepants took the world by storm. Since its first episode aired on May 1, 1999, this little sponge that lives in a pineapple undersea that started as a rejected idea for a comic book is now a billion dollar franchise.

 

                The show is created by Stephen Hillenburg, a marine biologist and an animator. Basically, the show is about the yellow kitchen sponge and his daily adventures in Bikini Bottom. Together with a band of misfit colorful characters and hilarious witty jokes, the show has become a worldwide phenomenon garnering a massive following up until today. The series' popularity has made it a media franchise, as well as Nickelodeon network's highest rated show, and the most distributed property of MTV Networks. The media franchise has generated $8 billion in merchandising revenue for Nickelodeon.

 

                Hillenburg worked on many projects before Spongebob. Unfortunately, only a few was a success. The cartoon started as a comic book but no publishing company was interested in it. So Stephen eventually turned into a cartoon and hired Tom Kenny to be the voice of the titular character. The show was supposed to be called Spongeboy Ahoy! But it was later changed due to trade mark issues.

 

                When Hillenburg pitched the idea of SpongebobSquarepants to Nickelodeon executives, he went all the way by donning a Hawaiian shirt and bringing along an "underwater terrarium with models of the characters", and Hawaiian music to set the theme. The setup was described by Nickelodeon executive Eric Coleman as "pretty amazing". After that pitch, the executives when outside to talk which made the team very nervous. Turns out, the only reason they stepped outside was because they got so tired at laughing but they cannot seem to stop. So, they went back in and told the team that Nickelodeon is definitely going to do the show thus giving birth to one of the most popular cartoon shows of all time.

 

 

                Funnily enough, even though the show is actually for kids, the fans are not composed by children. In fact, the show’sfans mostly consist of adults who don’t even have children. And the main reason for that is because we watched the show as kids and we’re still watching it until now because it’s just too darn good. I was in 3rd grade when I first watched this show and I haven’t stopped since. I’m 21 years old now by the way and I am proud to say that I can name almost all Spongebob episodes and even recite the script. Some young adults like me have Pokemon, I have Spongebob Squarepants. 

 

                Over the years, Spongebob Squarepants have garnered a lot of awards from award-giving bodies on television such as an Emmy, Annie Award, Golden Reel Award and many more. Stephen Hillenburg quits being the show runner in 2004 but he still oversees the production. He left the responsibility to his most trusted colleague, Paul Tibitt, who I can say is doing a really good job.

 

 

                An episode of Spongebob Squarepants takes nine months to produce. Whoa! That’s a lot of time and effort! No wonder the show is a big hit and has been going 15 years now. It's broadcast around the world in 25 languages and it has spawned an entire line of toys, clothing and food, with total sales estimated at nearly $1 billion a year.

 

                But why is it so famous? What makes Spongebob the most popular cartoon of this generation? James Poniewozik writes in his December 9, 2001, Time Magazine article that SpongeBob’s appeal is found in his innocence. Poniewozik writes that SpongeBob’s personality is one of being “conscientious, optimistic and blind to the faults in the world and those around him.” Poniewozik compares SpongeBob to Pee-Wee Herman, a comparison that Hillenburg himself makes in the Zeller piece. Hillenburg states that he drew inspiration from Pee-Wee Herman, Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel, who, as Hillenburg says, “made naiveté the core of their comedy.” And I agree. Spongebob offers the audience an entirely new perspective on things and he teaches us all to stay young at heart and always look for the good in others.

 

                I love SpongebobSquarepants and I’m proud to be a fan of this cartoon no matter what my age is!

 

The Truman Show

 

 

                What if one day, you woke up and you realize that your entire life is a lie? What if you’re being watched by hundreds of cameras right now and are broadcasting 24/7 all over the world? What if you find out that all your family, friends and neighbors are all actors and everything is just a set, from the sky to the moon you see every night?

 

                That must be quite a nightmare, right? But for Truman Burbank, that is his entire life. The Truman show is a 1998 American satirical social science fiction film directed by Peter Weir and written by Andrew Niccol. Jim Carrey plays the iconic role of Truman Burbank who was the first baby ever to be adopted by a broadcasting network and have his entire life broadcasted 24/7 all over the world.

 

                Truman grew up in Seahaven, a town which is actually just inside a big dome. Everything on it was a set and the entire population was made up of actors, including Truman’s parents and wife. Up until his 30’s, Truman did not have a clue that he’s actually living inside a television set until one of the lights they used to film fell down from the sky. Then out of nowhere, Truman’s father who died when he was a kid suddenly resurfaces and he was shocked to see random citizens pulling him away. Everyday, Truman’s suspicion grew until he decided to be unpredictable and break his routine. He even followed his wife to the hospital she works at to see if she is really a nurse. Fortunately, the production team remedied that one but that didn’t stop his suspicions. He even figured out the town’s routine and how they worked around him.

 

 

                Truman eventually figures out that his surroundings are full of staged scenes and events. He then tries to make his escape, only to come up against both his own fears, which keep him from leaving, and the obstacles put in his way by the producer-director who has made billions trapping him in a stage set and playing God with his life.

 

                This film is one of the most innovative comedies I’ve ever encountered and up until now, no one has created another one quite like it. I like how the entire film actually discusses how humans spend a lot of our time being interested in what other people are doing. Also, it emphasizes how the media and the entertainment industry is manipulating us into buying this and that and telling us what to think.

 

                The fake landscape Truman lives in is our own media landscape in which news, politics, advertising and public affairs are increasingly made up of theatrical illusions. Like our media landscape, it is convincing in its realism, with lifelike simulations and story lines, from the high-tech facsimile of the sun that beams down on Truman to the false sincerity of the actor he mistakenly believes is his best friend. It is also rewarding and masks as something benevolent. And it is seamless -- there are almost no flaws that give away the illusion -- at least until things start to go wrong.

 

                The film aims to wake up and see what watching too much TV and believing everything it portrays is doing to us. Like Truman’s reluctance to leave his staged world, we are also scared of a life without the media to tell us what to do. But if we never break that bond, we will never be free to think and use our entitlement to freewill. I’m not just talking about the television; the internet has the same power over us. Sometimes I think it’s slowly outshining television and other forms of media and more and more people are gaining access to it which scares me. The more digital savvy we become, the more we are bound by our attachment to the false realities the media presents.

 

                So Truman and the audience depict us. We're the villains and victims and hero of The Truman Show. And, ultimately, the only illusions we have to escape are the ones we create ourselves.

Nerd Guide: How to Talk To People

 

 

 

                Most nerds are not fond of talking to people. In fact, 90% of our kind is socially inept and awkward when it comes to meeting strangers. And being part of that 90%, I have experienced so many inevitable social moments that I barely lived through. And that’s why you don’t see us in parties or in a crowd. We like the peace and comfort of being with things that are familiar to us and to force us to participate is like putting are butts on fire. However, talking to people really in inescapable as we need to communicate in a daily basis that’s why I have created a guide on how to talk to people (nerd or not):\

 

  • Do not over think

                We tend to over think when we’re nervous and we end up with tied tongues. Thinking of what you’re going to say next is like doing mental long division when you’re not really good at math.  Sometimes it gets so frustrating that you just end up not talking until the person you just met talks to somebody else. How do you stop that from happening? First of all you need to do small talk. Say ‘Hello’ or ask ‘How are you doing’ and build it up from there. You don’t need to say something smart or cool to keep the conversation going, at least not yet.

 

  • Gather Information

                What’s the best way to gather information? Ask. Ask questions like ‘what’s your favorite book’ or ‘who is your favorite band?’ until you find common ground. When you established your common ground, you’ll be fine from there just remember not to cross any lines. Think of the questions you’d answer on live television then ask them that. Don’t be too evading but don’t be too plain, either.

 

  • Humor

                Nothing keeps a conversation going than good witty humor. However, not all people are gifted enough in this area. In fact, there are very few people who can pull this off amazingly. If your friends ever laughed at one or two of your jokes, you probably have a sense of humor that might just get you through a conversation.  Comedy is an essential tool not just in socializing but in life as well so if you’re not funny enough, I suggest you go stretch your funny bones. You don’t have to be stand-up comedian funny, just interestingly funny is enough to keep you going.

 

  • Listen

                Communication is a 2 way system. There’s a sender and receiver and you can’t call something a conversation if there’s no interaction between the sender and the receiver. So how do you make this interaction? The answer is simply by listening. Don’t just listen to reply, listen to understand. That way you can impart more things to say rather than saying things about you all the time. Plus, not listening while someone is talking is rude everywhere you go.

 

  • Know When To End a Conversation

 

               This is the part that I hate the most because it’s the most awkward. Usually, when I’m in a conversation with someone I really, really do not like talking to, I suffer in silence until he/she finishes the conversation for me because I just couldn’t do it. Or sometimes, I really get into a conversation and I worry that the conversation is already taking so long. So here’s what I’ve learned: If you have talked for 10-15 minutes already, you’ve done a great job and also, probably running out of things to say which is normal. You can end the conversation by saying "Well, it was nice meeting you. Maybe we can talk again sometime?" and exchange phone numbers if the other person seems interested.

 

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