A Rube Goldberg Zipper-Zipping Machine

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YouTube / Jimmy Kimmel Live

Since the late 1980s, Purdue University has invited students to make Rube Goldberg machines accomplishing simple tasks in absurdly complex ways. Each machine has to occupy at least a 6-foot cube, perform at least 20 steps, and achieve a stupidly simple task. This year the winners made a charmingly goofy machine to zip a zipper. Here they are walking us through the process (the action starts around 3:05):

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And according to Wikipedia, here's the list of previous tasks set out for the Purdue contest:

2014 Zip a zipper

2013 Hammer a nail

2012 Inflate a balloon and pop it

2011 Water a Plant

2010 Dispense an Appropriate Amount of Hand Sanitizer into a Hand

2009 LittleBigPlanet Contraption Challenge 6

2009 Replace an Incandescent Light Bulb with a More Energy Efficient Light Emitting Design

2008 Assemble a Hamburger

2007 Squeeze the Juice from an Orange

2006 Shred 5 Sheets of Paper

2005 Change Batteries and Turn on a 2-battery Flashlight

2004 Select, Mark and Cast an Election Ballot

2003 Select, Crush and Recycle an Empty Soft Drink Can

2002 Select, Raise and Wave a U.S. Flag

2001 Select, Clean and Peel an Apple

2000 Fill and Seal a Time Capsule with 20th-century Inventions

1999 Set a Golf Tee and Tee Up a Golf Ball

1998 Shut Off An Alarm Clock

1997 Insert and Then Play a CD Disc

1996 Put Coins in a Bank

1995 Turn on a Radio

1994 Make Cup of Coffee

1993 Screw a Light Bulb into a Socket

1992 Unlock a Combination Padlock

1991 Toast a Slice of Bread

1990 Put the Lid on a Ball Jar

1989 Sharpen a Pencil

1988 Adhere a Stamp to a Letter

1987 Put Toothpaste on a Toothbrush

(Via Devour.)

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May 15, 2014 - 1:39pm
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