Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Wacky machine contest builds complicated burger

The School of Education’s technology education program hosted its first Rube Goldberg Machine Contest for Wisconsin high school teams March 11.
The contest brings the cartoons of the late Pulitzer Prize-winning artist Rube Goldberg to life. For the contest, teams are given a simple challenge for which they must create a machine — an assembly of ordinary objects and mechanical gadgets — to solve the problem in a convoluted way.

This year’s challenge was for teams to assemble a hamburger in a minimum of 20 steps — the more steps, the better the machine.

Andrew Behnke, a sophomore from Loyal, Wis., was the student coordinator who launched UW-Stout’s event for high schoolers. As a high school senior, Behnke was the captain of his school’s Rube Goldberg team. His team won the regional contest and also placed second in the national competition.

Behnke plans to launch a collegiate contest at UW-Stout next.

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