March 11, 1980 (43)
Mark Rober is an esteemed American engineer, inventor, and YouTube personality, whose reputation extends beyond the fields of technology and science, reaching into the realm of edutainment. Rober’s unique blend of engineering prowess, charisma, and storytelling has managed to win hearts worldwide.
Rober’s extraordinary body of work spans a range of innovative projects, many of which have caught the attention of millions on YouTube. He first gained widespread recognition with his Digital Dudz Halloween costumes, a perfect fusion of creativity, technology, and fun. This project entailed integrating mobile devices with clothing to create animated visual effects. His series of videos featuring these costumes garnered millions of views, catapulting him to the spotlight. His other groundbreaking inventions include a dartboard that automatically moves to catch darts and the infamous Glitter Bomb, a glitter-filled device designed to deter and record parcel thieves. The latter, laced with humor and a healthy dose of justice, went viral and currently sits at over 85 million views. Rober’s videos also dive into scientific experiments and explanations, a part of his portfolio that is as much about entertainment as it is about education.
Rober’s professional journey and widespread influence have led him to collaborate with numerous esteemed individuals and organizations. Notably, he has worked with NASA, where he spent nine years as an engineer, including seven years on the Mars Rover team. This professional affiliation brought him into contact with other luminaries in the field of science and engineering, including Bill Nye, Derek Muller of Veritasium, and astronaut Chris Hadfield. Rober’s YouTube career has also seen him collaborate with other famous personalities like Jimmy Kimmel, reprising his role as an inventor in “Pranksgiving” episodes. His Glitter Bomb videos feature collaborations with Macaulay Culkin and the former NASA engineer and current MythBusters host, Adam Savage. His influence reaches into the realm of entertainment as well, with a special guest appearance in the YouTube Original series “Could You Survive the Movies?” featuring Jake Roper from Vsauce3.
Rober’s work has not gone unnoticed by the larger scientific and tech communities. For his contributions to the Mars Science Laboratory mission, including the Curiosity rover, he was awarded the NASA Group Achievement Award. Moreover, his work on YouTube has been recognized with several Streamy Awards, including the award for “Educational and Learning” in 2019.
Despite his focus on engineering and education, Rober’s compassion extends to the animal kingdom. He has used his platform to raise awareness about conservation issues, such as the shark-focused video in which he partnered with the Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week.” He also collaborated with the Monterey Bay Aquarium for a video discussing the intelligence of octopuses. Rober’s fondness for squirrels has been notably apparent in a series of videos where he designs intricate obstacle courses for the backyard visitors, which serves to both entertain and educate his viewers about these creatures.