More (Steve) Jobs and Ambitions to Become a Disney Animatronic

Obama should launch his own moon shot. What the country needs most now is not more government stimulus, but more stimulation. We need to get millions of American kids, not just the geniuses, excited about innovation and entrepreneurship again. We need to make 2010 what Obama should have made 2009: the year of innovation, the year of making our pie bigger, the year of “Start-Up America.” Obama should make the centerpiece of his presidency mobilizing a million new start-up companies that won’t just give us temporary highway jobs, but lasting good jobs that keep America on the cutting edge. The best way to counter the Tea Party movement, which is all about stopping things, is with an Innovation Movement, which is all about starting things. Without inventing more new products and services that make people more productive, healthier or entertained — that we can sell around the world — we’ll never be able to afford the health care our people need, let alone pay off our debts. via Op-Ed Columnist – More (Steve) Jobs, Jobs, Jobs, Jobs – NYTimes.com If you ignore the political slant in this piece if it’s something that doesn’t sit well with you, the overall message is still valid. The country needs to create excitement in youth about making things and being innovative, about having outlandish ideas and goals and trying to reach them, so the future is not just a culture of passive media ingesters. Kids should aspire to have a robot built after them and installed in Spaceship Earth, like the Steve Jobs one I saw this past...

Nickelodeon Aims to Teach Preschoolers Math

“Everybody’s trying to teach preschoolers how to read and nobody is trying to teach them how to do math”… In some ways the new program is standard children’s fare. The main characters are miniature superheroes — a boy, a girl and a break-dancing robot — who zoom about fixing simple crises in their city, whether a shortage of milk, a lost kite or a subway system stalled by a dropped mitten. But the show is infused in all aspects — down to character Milli’s pony tails that turn into a ruler — with concepts from an interactive math curriculum that the characters tap to solve their problems, including shape-matching, counting, simple computation and measurement. New Nickelodeon Show to Focus on Math – NYTimes.com No idea what an Umizoomi is in Nick’s new show “Team Umizoomi,” but it’s cool that they’re aiming to teach kids math, which they say is an area left pretty opening in children’s television, aside form Sesame Street. Plus it stars a...

Obama Supports Bots High (Sort Of)

Earlier this morning President Obama gave a speech pushing for better STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education in middle and high school. Well if you’re looking for a documentary about all of that then look no further because that’s what Bots High is all about. The MythBusters were in attendance (way cool!) and the winning robot from the FIRST robotics competition gave a demonstration. Some good quotes and initiatives: As President, I believe that robotics can inspire young people to pursue science and engineering… And today, I’m announcing that we’re going to have an annual science fair at the White House with the winners of national competitions in science and technology. If you win the NCAA championship, you come to the White House. Well, if you’re a young person and you’ve produced the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too. Scientists and engineers ought to stand side by side with athletes and entertainers as role models, and here at the White House we’re going to lead by example. We’re going to show young people how cool science can be. Hopefully with BattleBots making it’s return to TV on December 10th the winners from next year’s competition will be invited to the White House (though a BattleBots demonstration might be considered a threat to national security). Here’s the full speech below (full transcript (via Bad...