I was on a reality TV show (tech related)

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I'm kind of proud of this; I was one of the 'mentors' on a technology reality show on TBS called "America's Greatest Makers". Its on US tv on Tuesday nites and is about midway thru its first season.

I worked for Intel at the time and was brought in for this project. The idea is to show typical TV audiences what this 'maker stuff' is about and to try to get people more interested in this (and STEM, overall).

Its Intel-specific right now, as its an Intel-sponsored show, highlighting their current IoT chip, the 'curie' module. Contestants had to come up with a product idea that uses this chip and develop a marketable product in a small amount of time. They had access to us 'mentors' and we had access to detailed info about the chip, its OS and whatever else would be needed in order to get a working hardware/firmware product to at least a demo-able state for a panel of judges.

Here's a shot of several of us mentors while inside Tech Shop:


I have to say that this was one of the most fun 'jobs' I ever had. Being on a sound stage and seeing the whole process work was amazing in itself; and working with 24 contestants and helping them compete for a million dollar prize, that was not like any other job I ever had. It was more fun than 'work' (but don't tell them that) ;)


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One challenging yet rewarding experience I had a few years ago was teaching computer programming at an ID Tech Camp offered at the local UC campus near where I live (sadly, it's no longer offered there). I got to work with middle school to high school age kids and we introduced them to programming concepts using goal oriented tasks, like programming hangman or a game reminiscent of Zork where they would come up with interesting ways to kill off the players! It was really cool to see many of them light up as they realized that they could create stuff, and use their imagination in the process. Hopefully we inspired some young minds to do some creative work later on in life.
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