Washington: A USD 5 chemistry set and some other tools designed by Indian-Americans have been highlighted at the White House`s first ever Maker Faire hosted by President Barack Obama to showcase new ideas and inventions.
The chemistry set for the 21st century designed by Manu Prakash, an assistant professor at Stanford, showcased at the yesterday.
Inspired by the music box, this small but powerful invention could enable schoolchildren from low-income communities to not only learn about science and engineering but explore and address real-world issues like water quality and contamination.
Prakash is working to bring low cost scientific tools to school children. His other designs include "Foldscope" an origami-style paper microscope that costs less than a dollar to make.
As part of a weeks-long emphasis on the economy, Obama was promoting the use of new tools and techniques to start up new businesses, to boost manufacturing and to strengthen science and math education.
Obama was also impressed by the work of Partha Unnava, 21, who after spending six weeks in crutches, decided that it was time to fix a 5,000-year-old problem.
Currently a fifth year Biomedical Engineering student, he helped develop the Better Walk Crutch, which reduces pain and fatigue for crutch users.
"I am proud to host the first-ever White House Maker Faire," President Obama said.
"New tools and technologies are making the building of things easier than ever," Obama told entrepreneurs and students who gathered at the White House.
"We`ve got to make sure that more Americans have the skills and opportunities to land a job in a growing industry or to create entire new industries," he said.
A 17-foot robotic giraffe; a 128-square-foot, portable tiny house; a 3D pancake printer; a giant red weather balloon; and more than 30 other inspiring and creative inventions displayed at the event.
More than 100 "makers" from 25 states were at the White House as Obama focused on helping fledgling businesses create and market their products.
The White House says 13 federal agencies are teaming up with companies like Etsy and Kickstarter to help Americans access startup capital and tools to develop new products.
Obama also proclaimed Wednesday the "National Day of Making".