Thursday, November 14, 2013

Passion Project Reflection

I can't believe we're already halfway through the time allotted for passion projects.  My group and I  are doing a Rube Goldberg machine which is pretty cool. Our goal is to pump hand sanitizer using at least 15 steps.  We've completed 7 steps so far so we're about halfway there!  I'm pretty proud of our group because we've put in a lot of working trying to find the perfect combination of consecutive steps.  We have faced a few challenges that slowed us down.  One of the biggest challenges is that when our machine goes to pump the hand sanitizer its so powerful that it pulls the hand sanitizer off the table.  We have to find a way to get the hand sanitizer to stay on the table.  Another problem we're facing is that Thomas the train is having trouble going up the track. It doesn't seem to have enough power to make it up the hill.  On the bright side we’re getting together today to hopefully resolve the problems and add more steps.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Thomas Edison an Outlier

         When I had to pick an outlier to research at first i wasn't sure who to pick.  I knew it should be someone influential so one of the first people that came to mind was Thomas Edison.  I didn't really have much proof that he was an outlier until i actually started to research him.  After reading a lot about him i realized that he is indeed an outlier and follows some of the rules to be successful.
      Thomas Edison was born February 11, 1847 in Milan, Ohio.  He was the last of seven children.  When Edison was young he had scarlet fever which left him nearly deaf.  Later in his life this disadvantage would come back to affect him.  Edison was only in school for 12 weeks before his teacher deemed him difficult and his mom decided to pull him out and teach him at home.  This wide open curriculum allowed him to self educate himself and learn independently. Edison getting pulled out of school might have actually been a special opportunity.  Although at first it might have seemed like a bad thing, Edison had more time than any child his age to focus on and learn what he wanted. He was also used to teaching himself new topics and experimenting to find things out on his own.  That explains why from a very young age Edison was an entrepreneur.  For example he published his own newspaper called The Grand Trunk Herald and he sold it to passengers.
         For example,  Edison was given a special opportunity.  He saved a three year old child from being run over by a train and the boys father was so grateful that he taught Edison to operate a telegraph.  This   opportunity allowed Edison to become employed as a telegraph operator.  Getting to work as a telegraph operator lead Edison to become very familiar with electrical science. That special opportunity really allowed him to discover his love for electrical science.
      Thomas Edison was also privy to accumulative advantage.    All his special opportunities put together lead to accumulative advantage.  From a very young age Edison capitalized on opportunities like when he was kicked out of school.  He didn't let not going to school stop him from learning.    Also when he became a telegraph operator he used every chance he had to learn as much about  the telegraph and electrical science.  Basically Thomas Edison's advantages started small and then snowballed down to huge advantages.
       Another rule of success  that Thomas Edison followed was the 10,000 hour rule.  Edison has basically been working towards 10,000 hours since he was a young boy.  All that free time he had as a kid allowed him to get a head start on 10,000 hours.  When Edison was 19 he began working at the Associated Press.  He worked the night shift so he could spend a lot of time reading and experimenting with electricity.  That also goes towards the 10,000 hour rule.  When Edison was only 22 years old he had his first successful invention which was an improved stock ticker that the Stock Telegraph Company bought for $40,000.  20-22 years of age is normally when most devoted people reach the 10,000 hour rule which is conveniently when Edison had his first successful invention.
     Edison became a well known inventor by the 1870's.  He created a few useful inventions but the most well known by far was the light bulb.  He then created the Edison Illuminating Company which provided electricity to paying citizens.  I think it's quite clear that Thomas Edison was extremely successful but now its also pretty clear that he's also an outlier.  He had a few special opportunities which lead to accumulative advantage and he also completed the 10,000 hour rule.  In my persona opinion Thomas Edison is a true outlier.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Joyas Voladoras Essay Response

After reading this essay I feel that it had a very negative and discouraging  message. This essay was basically saying that no matter what you do to try to save your heart from pain, its still going to get hurt.  This quote proves what I'm saying. "You can brick your heart up as stout and tight and hard and cold and impregnable as you possibly can and it comes down in an instant....."  I think that sends a very pessimistic message. It's almost warning you that you will get hurt despite everything you try to do to stop it.  After reading this I feel that its not worth it to try to keep my heart safe.  It makes me want to stop trying to save myself all the hurt that I will experience in life.  Now I guess I understand that you can never possibly stop yourself from being hurt.  Maybe you can lock your heart up so it's not effected by some things but then something will happen completely unexpected and your barrier will come down.  I'm done trying to lock my heart up and keep it safe.  I undertsand now that I can never truly protect my heart from everything.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Everybody's Free to Wear Sunscreen

The song Everybody's Free to Wear Sunscreen has a lot of great advice.  One of my favorite pieces is
"Understand that friends come and go,but for the precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle because the older you get, the more you need the people you knew when you were young."  This is a great piece of advice because you should never continue to hold on to people that don't appreciate you.  You should also never let go of people who really love and care for you.  This is an important piece of advice that as soon as people understand this, the happier they will be.  My other favorite piece of advice is "Get to know your parents, you never know when they'll be gone for good Be nice to your siblings, they're your best link to your past And the people most likely to stick with you in the future."  I like this piece of advice because it basically says how important your parents and siblings are.  I have a brother and although we don't get along but I don't know what I would do without him.  Same with my parents.  We often have different view points but I would be devastated to lose them.  This song has a lot of great advice that I'm going to try to follow.
I also have my own piece of advice to add.  All I have to say is eat healthy and stay in shape.  Don't pollute your body with unhealthy substances if you expect to live past 40.  Exercising and eating healthy will make you look and feel younger.  You will need your body in the future so it's no use destroying it when your young.  I know as a kid everyone wants to look skinny, but when it comes down to it staying in shape is a lot harder than it seems.  That would definitely be my top piece of advice to give other people.

Monday, May 6, 2013

What's worth knowing?

Schools teaches us a variety of different skills but somehow manage to  skip over the most important ones.  Sure we're taught math, writing and reading but we're not taught how to communicate our feelings or read other peoples expressions. School teaches us all the academic knowledge we need to know but fails to teach us any social knowledge.  By sitting in school everyday I'm not learning how to tell someone how I feel or how to understand what someone means just by looking at their face.  Now both those skills are extremely important but their not taught at school.  Sure people say you can't survive in the world without knowing math or learning to write but how can you survive never being able to tell someone how you feel or never being able to understand if a person is upset.  I believe that being able to read peoples expressions is immensly important and yet its never taugth to us.  Neil Gaimen was completely right when he said that schools don't teach us alot of stuff thats worth knowing.  As he said before they dont teach you how to love or how to be rich or poor.  Yet, arguably those are two important skills that will help you later in life.  I want to know why schools skip over such important information.  How are we suppose to go into life with such huge gaps in our  education?  How are we ever going to learn to love and trust someone if its not taught?  Maybe its assumed that we will pick it up on our own but that's not always the case. School needs to teach us  these things or atleast have them explained to us.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Wasteland Documentary

      The wasteland had a lot of memorable parts.  I think the most memorable part of the movie was when the catadores or the pickers saw the pictures that Vik had created.  I liked this part because the people were in awe and fascinated by what Vik had created.  I learned from Wasteland to be grateful for what I have and never take anything for granted.  you don't really understand how much you have until you see how little other people have.  From watching this film I will start to appreciate everything I have.  Until I watched this film I didn't know that people lived in the garbage.  After seeing this I want to appreciate everything no matter how big or how small.
       I think the people that had their lives turned into something bigger felt proud.  To them it probably felt like all their hard work paid off and they were finally being recognized for the good work they had been doing.  I think they also felt a bit overwhelmed.  This was something completely different than what they normally did.  At first I think it took them a little bit to get used to the idea that their daily jobs were turning into something bigger.
       I think I would feel overwhelmed too and a little scared.  I wouldn't know what to make of having my whole life turned into something more meaningful.  I would also feel shocked because I would be surprised that someone other than myself was so interested in my life.  I don't think there are aspects of my life that would lend myself to similar types of art.  My life isn't really full of anything interesting.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


The picture above shows one of the many houses that was hit hard by the blizzard.  As you can see the snow is so deep that if you step outside it might just reach the bottom of your foot. We interviewed Mr. and Mrs. Fairfield and asked if they were prepared. Mrs. Fairfield said "We got all the basics for a week trapped inside.  We got tons of raw pasta and fresh meat that needs to be refrigerated.  I forgot to get any water but since its snowing I figured we could just use that."  The Albert family stocked up on light bulbs in case the power went out so they wouldn't be in the dark. Parents have called out sick for the next week because they don't want to risk getting trapped away from home.  As you can see from the picture above, any minute now the snow could completely cover the door. Some families are treating this situation as vacation.When we interviewed little Molly Fairfield she said that all her favorite games were outside on the patio so that she would have plenty of sunlight to play the games. Other families are in panic mode and already ready for the storm to be over. Mrs. Dinklewitz's is one of those people.  She's worried that if it snows much more it might cover her flowers. If the snow keeps falling at this rate we might get 2 inches in about three weeks.  We will keep you posted and let you know if this storm can possibly get any worse!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Week Supply of Food

 My family spends about $200 to $300 on food a week.  Some family staples include pasta, bread, peanut butter, cheese and meat!

Monday, January 28, 2013

20% project Plan

For my 20% project I want to do it on baking.  The 20% project is suppose to be on your passion and baking is defiantly my passion so it seemed fit to do it on that.  For my project I am going to record myself baking different foods.  I will bake a variety of different items such as cupcakes, cinnamon rolls and various types of cookies. Since all my baking will be recorded I will be able to show the class a shortened video of how I make everything.  I will also bring in samples of everything I make so that the class can see what they taste like.  I hope you enjoy.


America is a “mixing pot” of all different cultures, nationalities, holidays and traditions. There are so many different people in America and sadly that means that there’s a lot of stereotyping. People every day mentally judge and place people together into groups. Every human at one point or another has looked at someone without even really knowing them and placed them into a category. Although it’s definitely not a good thing, we do it naturally now. It’s hard to look at someone and not form a mental opinion about them. Sometimes what you think about the person is correct but most of the time it’s completely inaccurate. You shouldn’t place someone into a group without getting to know them first. For example you look at someone that’s blonde. Without even meeting that person you just assume they are dumb. Now if you really think about that you should know that a person’s hair color should not affect their mental ability. The truth is that there can be dumb people with any color hair. Another hair stereotype is that people with red or ginger hair have no soul. Now most people say that as a joke but the stereotype was still made. You wouldn’t look at a person with brown hair and think “wow they have no soul” but when you look at a person with red hair a lot of people think “soulless”. Although they may not seriously think that people with red hair are still stereotyped into the category of being soulless. Another stereotype is that all Asian’s are super smart. For some Asian’s that’s probably true but it’s not true for all Asian’s. Someone’s nationality isn’t going to make someone smarter just like someone’s hair color isn’t going to make them dumber. Gordon Allport feels that “The human mind must think with the aid of categories," Allport explained. "Once formed, categories are the basis for normal prejudgment. We cannot possibly avoid this process. Orderly living depends upon it. This process of categorization applies to the social world as well, as we sort people into mental groups based on factors such as age, sex and race.” I completely agree with Gordon Allport is saying.

Overall I believe that stereotyping is a very serious problem that happens every day. Although it happens all the time people are still hurt by what their stereotyped as. We need to learn not to judge people before we meet them and wait till after we get to know them to form an opinion. Instead of stereotyping someone actually find out what they are like. So remember next time you see someone with blonde hair don’t automatically assume they are dumb and if you see someone with red hair don’t assume they don’t have a soul. Everyone is different so it’s not fair to stereotype anyone. No one deserves to be put in a category based on how they look.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2013 Resolution

I learned a lot about myself, life and the world in 2012.  One thing I learned about myself is that I like to be challenged in classes.  This year I am in Honors Geometry and I really like what we're learning.  One thing I learned about life is that it's better to be happy and excited than upset and grumpy.  If you live your life grumpy than you won't have as much fun.  One thing i learned about the world is that we can survive an apocalypse.
My new year resolution this year is to be in shape and stay healthy.  I really like junk food and in the winter I don't do anything.  I want to stay in shape so I can still play sports.