Conan O'Brien ribs 'nerds' at Intel science fair

"How do I calculate the size of meatballs?" That was the title of one of the seminal science projects that NBC's Conan O'Brien covered at an Intel science fair.

How do I calculate the size of meatballs?--O'Brien asks.
How do I calculate the size of meatballs?--O'Brien asks. 'The Tonight Show' with Conan O'Brien

"How do I calculate the size of meatballs?" That was the title of one of the seminal Intel science projects that late-night comedian Conan O'Brien covered in a segment last night on NBC's "The Tonight Show."

O'Brien was at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, billed as the world's largest pre-college science fair. Intel is one of the sponsors of the "The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien," which launched recently with the retirement (from that show) of Jay Leno.

"Even though Intel is one of the world's largest corporations and they could crush me like a fly, they were nice enough to let me go visit their science fair in Reno, Nev.," O'Brien said.

"1,500 dweebs, nerds, and Poindexters," O'Brien said, describing the high school kids attending the event.

Conan O'Brien interviews science fair participants
Conan O'Brien interviews science fair participants The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien

A project of note was a "See Through Camera Jammer." "So if someone has a see-through camera, your device stops them from seeing through people's clothing?" O'Brien asked. "Why would you make this?" The response from the high school kid who did the project: "Because it's illegal." And Conan responded: "But I paid a lot of money for that thing."

He ended the segment with a visit to the meatball size-measuring project. "Of course, not everyone here is a genius. 'How do I calculate the size of meatballs?' This was a $13 million study commissioned by Chef Boyardee," he joked.

The link to "The Tonight Show" replay is here. Note that the Intel segment begins at about the 6:30 marker into the show.

About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.

 

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