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Aidan Dwyer : A Big Mistake? He’s Still Cool.

Aidan Dwyer is not someone you see every day.  He’s an innovator, an engineer, and a 13 year old. The reason he is so “cool” is because he engineered a way to mount solar panels to make them more efficient.  He has made the first “solar tree“.  “his parents had been hoping to install solar panels on their Long Island house,” said the Wall Street Journal, “but their yard was too small and their roof wasn’t suitable”.   However, there was room enough for a tree.  Aidan figured out that if you imitated a tree branch sequence using the Fibbonacci series, you could collect light much more efficiently.  He had perhaps made history – and one big mistake.  When he was proving his hypothesis he measured the wrong thing.  He was supposed to be calculating power, but he was recording voltage.  This has started a serious debate on the internet – in some cases even flamewars!  Aidan says he has been working on this problem and believes that he may have found the solution by measuring the right thing, power.  Luckily, the solar tree is still preforming better than standard solar panels.

A message for Aidan : keep on goin’!

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TEDxYouth : Play, Learn, Build, Share.

I am a now a TEDxYouth reporter!  So, now I have the responsibility to upload live news from the TEDxYouthTampaBay event through Twitter.  There are over one hundred TEDxYouth Day events in fifty countries all around the theme Play. Learn. Build. Share.  This years youth day events will occour on November 19th, 20th, and 21st.

TEDxYouth is an organization created by TED to give youth a platform to share their ideas with the world.  TEDx events are licensed by TED to encourage others to host TED-like conferences of their own.

TEDx events enable  people to share their ideas with the world.  TEDx allows people to interact with and impact the people in their local communities.  TEDxYouth empowers kids to actively participate in changing the world by sharing their ideas, just like grown-ups. The world is changing, and it is up to us to be a part of it.

Honor Steve

Steve Jobs was a visionary like none other.  He was the man behind the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and other mobile wonders.  And we lost him last night at the age of 56.  He was a good man, and “The world has lost an amazing human being.” – Tim Cook.  This tragedy has hit me hard, as no one can ever be like him.  Apple computers are like no other computer because they have lots of downloadable apps on the App store. I make stop-motion videos with my computer, Jessica.  Apple computers have beautiful interfaces that no other computers have.  Also, I use the little mobile devices for lots of things, like YouTube, internet, and games.  You can even attach a pocket microscope to the iPod touch and take pictures with it!

Oh, and one more thing.

In honor of Steve, we should never look down upon Apple, for even though it can never be the same company without him, he started a legacy that will always be remembered.  Thank you, Steve, for imagining devices that kids love so much.

“Stay hungry, Stay foolish” -Steven Paul Jobs

Micro-Meteor Collecting

Metallic particles

Metallic particles

If you have just read the title, I expect you to be astounded that there is any way to “collect” meteors.  But no, we are not talking large meteors.  If you have read the title, I also expect you to be asking me what a “micro” meteor is.  A micro-meteor is a little particle broken off from a meteor.  Micro meteors are too small and light to burn up in the atmosphere, which is why they float to the ground, unharmed.  Most micro meteors, however, only float to the ground when attached to other particles, like water droplets.  I recently went micro meteor collecting, and now i’m going to show you how.

  1. First you should check the American Meteor Society website to see when the next major meteor shower is.
  2. Right before the meteor shower, leave an empty glass bowl out for a month.  (Note: if you live somewhere where it does not rain a lot, put out a glass bowl filled with distilled water.)
  3. When you feel that you have left it outside long enough, take it back inside.  Then get a second glass bowl and fill it up with distilled water.
  4. Then put a magnet inside a ziplock bag, seal the bag and scrape it gently along the surface of the first bowl.  After that, put the bag in the second bowl, and remove the magnet from the bag.  Repeat the process several times.  (Note: since micro meteors are rich in iron, doing this will remove the particles from one dish and put them in the other.)
  5. Then you completely evaporate the distilled water in the second bowl.
  6. After that’s done, make a dry mount microscope slide.
  7. Now that you’ve done that, magnetize a sewing needle.  Drag the needle along the bottom and sides of the dish and tap them on to the middle of the slide.  Repeat the process until you feel that you have collected enough micro meteors.  (Note: if your needle is running out of magnetism, magnetize in again as much as necessary.)
  8. Then comes the slide cover.  (Note: you can make the slide cover fairly permanent by using transparent fingernail polish as slide glue.
  9. Now for the final step.  Look at the particles under a microscope, (yay!) and then label the slide “metalic particals”.  (Note: if you are looking at a particle that is slightly rounded, then it is probably a micro meteor.  If not, it’s probobly just a pice of dirt.)

Freedom!

Pretend you are a freedom rider, and turn on your little time machine and come with me to a period of segregation.  So now we are in Montgomery, Alabama in 1961.  The Greyhound bus is on fire, Freedom Riders face intense violence from racists. Why?  These people are being wrongly abused!  Black people are people just like everyone else!  The Freedom Riders goal was to test the law that African-Americans can use the same bathrooms, restaurants, bus seats, hotels, and waiting rooms as white people.  What reason is there to hate them?  They symbolize change! Is that what we hate?  There is no reason to hate change, change is a good thing.  Good things came from desegregation, like socialization and freedom.  The Freedom Rides lasted from 1961 to 1965.  The  first group of riders started at Washington, D.C., went through Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and then finally New Orleans.  But there where dozens and dozens of other groups that went everywhere around the south. In 1961 the I.C.C. (Interstate Commerce Commission)  finally ended segregation on busses and at bus stations.  Then, in 1963, president John.F.Kennedy gave a speech to Congress to outlaw Jim Crow laws.  So now, turn the coordinates on your time machine to 5-17-11.  How do you feel?  Sad? Mad?  Good?

The freedom rides are over, but their legacy lives on.

Liar Liar

Well… it’s a merry day isn’t it? Everyone is in the mood for a funny movie, aren’t you? So that means you’re in the mood for Liar Liar! A couple of Jim Carey’s lines will get you laughing your head red! Like, “Whatever takes the focus Of your head.”, or “I love my son!”. There are also some other funny scenes. Ohhhhh… and since your probably wondering, this movie is about a father that lies to his son about everything. The son gets mad and makes a birthday wish that his father cannot lie for one day. This almost ruins his dad’s life (being a lawyer), but in the end… well… you will see what happens when you watch the movie.

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The Real “Cristmas”

Now look.  It’s almost Christmas.  There is Santy Cause and all that stuff, but look, it goes way beyond all that.  Christmas really goes back all the way to zero Anno Domini, supposedly the birth of Jesus Christ, who’s exact birth is unknown.  Christmas isn’t about Silent Night, Santa Claus, or any of that stuff.  Christmas is really about representing the exhilarating happiness God’s son brought to us, and about being a good person.