Tag Archives: white house

Supergirls Invade White House Science Fair

Monday was the 2015 White House Science Fair, which featured more than 100 students showing off their projects. One group stood out to me, and that was a Daisy Scouts troop from Tulsa. Their project was a battery-powered page turner made from LEGOs for people with disabilities that have trouble doing so while reading.

It wasn’t the idea that stood out to me, it was what the girls were wearing. The 6 year olds are part of a “Supergirls” Junior FIRST LEGO League team, and all wore capes with a Superman “S” on them. Awesome!

From the White House website:

After chatting with their school librarian, the “Supergirls” Junior FIRST Lego League Team from Daisy Girl Scouts’ troop 411 discovered that some people have disabilities that make it difficult to turn the pages of a book. They came up with the concept of a battery-powered page turner that could turn pages for people who are paralyzed or have arthritis. The Supergirls sketched out a design concept and culled through motorized Lego components and gears to figure out how to build a working prototype. They discovered that the friction from rubber Lego tires could be used to lift and turn the pages of a book. They honed the device with a second motorized component that forces pages to lay flat after being turned over. The Supergirls’ creation was selected by the statewide FIRST program director to be the only project exhibited at an educational conference for librarians and educators in the region.

See, superheroes are for everyone!

This Isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking For – White House Responds to Death Star Request

Through their petition system “We the People,” 34,435 people requested the White House and President Obama put in an effort to fund and build a Death Star. “We the People” has rules, such as if a petition gets 25,000 signatures, a White House official will respond. In a post entitled “This Isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking ForPaul Shawcross, the Chief of the Science and Space Branch at the White House Office of Management and Budget, got that honor. Here’s the post in full:

Official White House Response to Secure resources and funding, and begin construction of a Death Star by 2016.

This Isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking For

By Paul Shawcross

The Administration shares your desire for job creation and a strong national defense, but a Death Star isn’t on the horizon. Here are a few reasons:

  • The construction of the Death Star has been estimated to cost more than $850,000,000,000,000,000. We’re working hard to reduce the deficit, not expand it.
  • The Administration does not support blowing up planets.
  • Why would we spend countless taxpayer dollars on a Death Star with a fundamental flaw that can be exploited by a one-man starship?

However, look carefully (here’s how) and you’ll notice something already floating in the sky — that’s no Moon, it’s a Space Station! Yes, we already have a giant, football field-sized International Space Station in orbit around the Earth that’s helping us learn how humans can live and thrive in space for long durations. The Space Station has six astronauts — American, Russian, and Canadian — living in it right now, conducting research, learning how to live and work in space over long periods of time, routinely welcoming visiting spacecraft and repairing onboard garbage mashers, etc. We’ve also got two robot science labs — one wielding a laser — roving around Mars, looking at whether life ever existed on the Red Planet.

Keep in mind, space is no longer just government-only. Private American companies, through NASA’s Commercial Crew and Cargo Program Office (C3PO), are ferrying cargo — and soon, crew — to space for NASA, and are pursuing human missions to the Moon this decade.

Even though the United States doesn’t have anything that can do the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs, we’ve got two spacecraft leaving the Solar System and we’re building a probe that will fly to the exterior layers of the Sun. We are discovering hundreds of new planets in other star systems and building a much more powerful successor to the Hubble Space Telescope that will see back to the early days of the universe.

We don’t have a Death Star, but we do have floating robot assistants on the Space Station, a President who knows his way around a light saber and advanced (marshmallow) cannon, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which is supporting research on building Luke’s arm, floating droids, and quadruped walkers.

We are living in the future! Enjoy it. Or better yet, help build it by pursuing a career in a science, technology, engineering or math-related field. The President has held the first-ever White House science fairs and Astronomy Night on the South Lawn because he knows these domains are critical to our country’s future, and to ensuring the United States continues leading the world in doing big things.

If you do pursue a career in a science, technology, engineering or math-related field, the Force will be with us! Remember, the Death Star’s power to destroy a planet, or even a whole star system, is insignificant next to the power of the Force.

Paul Shawcross is Chief of the Science and Space Branch at the White House Office of Management and Budget

President Obama Meet Spider-Man

Obama Spider-Man

Spider-Man visited President Obama at the White House. I can’t tell if the President in Geek is being captured by invisible webs or excited to meet his favorite super hero. I’m sure the webslinger had no issue getting past Secret Service.

The President has admitted to being a Spidey fan, collecting his comics as well as Conan. I wonder what he thinks of Dan Slott’s latest story arc?

(PHOTO CREDIT: Pete Souza/The White House)

Petition Asks President Obama for a Death Star by 2016

We the People is the White House‘s petition site/tool that allows anyone to ask the White House policy questions, and if they reach 25,000 signatures, the White House will respond.

This particular petition was created on November 14 and asks President Obama:

Those who sign here petition the United States government to secure funding and resources, and begin construction on a Death Star by 2016.

By focusing our defense resources into a space-superiority platform and weapon system such as a Death Star, the government can spur job creation in the fields of construction, engineering, space exploration, and more, and strengthen our national defense.

Think it’ll make it to the 25,000? Better questions is how this pro-drone attack administration would respond.



We The People Want Judges… on Motorcycles

We The People is the petition site launched by the White House where anyone can create a petition, really on any subject. The topics vary, but one in particular made it’s way around various comic blogs yesterday. Started by Sean M, a petition was launched on November 13 to “dissolve the current legal system and replace it with a single Hall of Justice, run by Judges; motorcycle-riding law officers who act as police, judge, jury, and executioner.” Yes, that’s right, so far 102 (as of this writing) have petitioned the White House to create real life Judge Dredds.

What’s really entertaining is that if this petition reaches 25,000 signatures, the White House has to respond, as per their own rules for the system. The petition hasn’t crossed the first threshold yet, at 150 signatures it shows up in searches. We’ll see if the petition gets all the way, and if it does, what the response might be.

Marvel Entertainment will be participating in the 2012 White House Easter Egg Roll


Marvel Entertainment will be participating in the 2012 White House Easter Egg Roll

The 2012 Easter Egg Roll, which takes place on the South Lawn of the White House, is focused on promoting health and wellness with the theme, “Let’s Go, Let’s Play, Let’s Move!”  All of the activities, including sports courts, dancing and cooking encourage children to lead healthy and active lives, which is a central part of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! initiative, a national campaign to combat childhood obesity.

World-renowned Marvel Super Heroes will make a special appearance at the 2012 White House Easter Egg Roll.  Costume characters including Spider-Man, Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America will be on hand for a meet and greet with children.

This will be the 134th annual White House Easter Egg Roll with more than 30,000 people visiting the South Lawn for games, stories, and, of course, the traditional egg roll.

Souvenir White House Easter eggs first became an annual keepsake in 1981, when President and Mrs. Ronald Reagan hosted a hunt for wooden eggs that bore the signatures of famous people. The tradition continues this year with the addition of an official First Dog “Bo” egg. These collector’s eggs are available to view or purchase at www.easter.nationalparks.org.

To learn more about the Easter Egg Roll visit www.whitehouse.gov/eastereggroll. Tune in for live streams from the South Lawn all day on April 9th, 2012 on WhiteHouse.gov/live. You can also join the conversation online using the hashtag #EasterEggRoll and get the latest updates by visiting Let’s Move! on Twitter and Facebook.


Around the Tubes

It’s a new week, and I have today off!  Yay Government schedule!  Here’s the news you might have missed….


Ammori.org – SOPA/PIPA Copyright Bills Also Target American Sites

GamePolitics – White House Questions SOPA, PIPA

TechCrunch – SOPA Supporters On The Run

Kotaku – This is What Razer Thinks of SOPA


Around the Blogs:

Bleeding Cool – Salt Lake City To Offer Comic Book DegreeNice to see comic books being taken seriously…

The Mary Sue – The Walking Dead Gets a 16-Episode Order For Its Third SeasonI can’t wait!  Just a few more weeks for the second half of the second season.

Kotaku – Sunday Comics: Blow Me – Each week Kotaku posts up some fantastic webcomics.

Around the Tubes

The comic world is pretty quiet, but the fight against the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act continue.  Here’s the latest with that.


GamePolitics – House Majority Leader: SOPA Will Not Get Floor Vote Without Some Consensus

Kotaku – More Big (and Small) Game Developers Sound Off Against SOPA

GamePolitics – Bungie Publicly Proclaims its Opposition to SOPA

GamePolitics – Major League Gaming Goes Dark Jan. 18 to Protest SOPA

Kotaku – The White House Isn’t Happy With SOPA, Either, “Will Not Support Legislation That Reduces Freedom of Expression.”

Super Heroes Party After Osama News

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Super heroes (well, people dressed as them) partied it up with the crowds after word spread of the killing of Osama bin Laden.

Captain America crowd surfed over the cheering masses.

Normally, you’d expect to see him in New York, but Spider-Man hung out with the cheering crowds outside the White House.

Spider-Man outside the White House
(h/t The Mary Sue)

Choice Quotes

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Captain America #603

Narrator – Traveling on a bus from New York to Idaho… the man you would be Captain America learned a lot about the changing face of his country.  The empty houses and unemployment lines reminded him of the world of his youth.  He saw the Great Depression end as the war brought a wave of industry to America.  Now, the factories were closed, and the wars abraod made no difference… he didn’t understand that.  He remembered President Eisenhower, remembered the ideals of the ’50s… Remembered an America that had the best schools, the best worked… a great country.

Dark Avengers #14

Miss Hand – I want Norman Osborn to lead.  I want you to lead our country into a place where Americans can live peaceful, fearless lives of comfort.

DoomWar #1

Desturi leader – — and now we are secure.  All Ambassadors have been expelled.  All borders closed, all press sent packing.  All foreign nationals have been given twelve hours to leave the country, no exceptions made.


Press – Reaction from the world leaders has been mixed and cautious.  White House sources say that President Obama is expected to make a statement later today.


Desturi leader – There is no epidemic, this is classic protest behavior.


Black Panther – The takeover of the Wakandan government is a criminal act.  We offer you one chance to stand down and avoid bloodshed.  One chance.  If you disarm and stand down, I offer clemency and justice.  We will allow representatives of the Desturi to participate in our political process, to have a voice in council.

Incorruptible #3

Max Damage – You’re right Armadale.  This town’s a wreck.

Det. Armadale – And I still don’t know why you care.  It’s like listening to Katrina apologize for New Orleans.

Resurrection #8

Sara – Well, this is a comforting thought.  The country is in shambles, human civilization as we know it is over.  But political correctness is alive and well.

President Clinton – I can only hope, Miss Lisco.  I can only hope.

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