Another dot in the blogosphere?


Posted on: October 11, 2021

If I described a Swede who builds “crappy” robots, used to live on a boat, and had a speaking role in a Chinese sit-com, could you name her? Oh, and she survived brain surgery to remove a tumour.

Combine all that (and more) and you get Simone Giertz.

Video source 

The video above is a random one of many quirky builds by Simone. It is probably mild by comparison to the other builds she has done alone or collaboratively. The latter creations are quite impressive, e.g,. Truckla (a DIY Tesla truck), Business Mantis Shrimp (with WETA workshop).

If I had to choose a word to describe all her builds, I would use joyful. Some of her builds are functional, some are not. Some are decorative, others are destructive. But they all seem to bring great joy to Simone and her 2.5 million subscribers.

They all seem to be products of thinking that is creative and critical, divergent and convergent, artistic and scientific. It would be tempting to call Simone a model and spokesperson for STEAM. But that would just pigeon-hole her. She is a celebration of what it is like to be brainy.

Video source

Simone’s braininess is not a direct result of schooling. In her TED talk, she shared how she was a straight-A student. Except in one case where she got upset after receiving a B in mathematics. She quit university in her first year.

So how did she succeed? She found an interest — building robots — that became a passion and then a career. She became an autodidact, i.e., she taught herself. She put herself out on YouTube and shared her enthusiasm. That in turn seemed to open doors for her.

This is not a formula that works for everybody. But it is a viable one that worked before the advent of formal schooling and continues to this day. And it is easier today because of shared and open platforms of information.

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