Rube Goldberg

We have stayed in Manila for almost 8 years now and we have always been hospitable when friends / highschool batchmates from Cebu visit Manila. Last February 26, Rej Cabanilla (together with the Cabanilla clan – yes, including baby Yana) was in Manila for 2 events: her NCLEX exam (which she passed.. congrats Rej!) and to support her brother and the CCNSHS delegates (our high school alma mater) in a Rube Goldberg contest.

Brunch plans were set (but as usual, people were late, including us) and then off to the Nido Discovery Center for the contest. Among the people who supported were (from left to right) Yza, me, the astronaut, Erika, Gia (but had to leave early. boo!), Ria (yes, she was also in Manila that weekend), baby Yana, Chris and Rej.

nido science discovery center

A Rube Goldberg contraption (or better known as Rube Goldberg for short) is a comically involved, complicated invention, laboriously contrived to perform a simple operation, according to Webster’s New World Dictionary. These are the contraptions you see in cartoons which seem to be very impossible to pull-off.

Mr. Rube Goldberg himself is an engineer and a cartoonist. He came up with these crazy contraption ideas which are now named after him. To know more about Rube Goldberg, go to

The 2nd National Rub Goldberg Scholastics Machine Contest 2012 is a contest sponsored by De La Salle University’s Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) held at the Nido Science Discovery Center in SM Mall of Asia. It was participated by selected high schools nationwide. Cebu City National Science High School, our high school alma mater, was one of them.

The contestants were given a couple of hours to build their Rube Goldberg contraptions. So while they were doing that, we went around the Nido Science Discovery Center first and tried out the features found inside.

nido science discovery centernido science discovery centernido science discovery centernido science discovery center

The entrance fee was P330 on a normal day with a 10% discount for SM Advantage cardholders. In my opinion, it was not something that adults would enjoy, for the price. I think it was catered more for the kids and students. Good thing we had discounts because of the event. =)

After going around, there were a few more minutes to finish their masterpieces before the final demonstration, a few adjustments here and there for the contestants.

rube goldbergrube goldbergrube goldbergrube goldberg

Finally, the clock was stopped and the final demonstration started. Each team was given two chances to run their contraptions. The number of human interventions were counted and considered in the final score among the other criteria items.

rube goldberg

During the final demonstration, the other contestants had at least 3 human interventions per run (some even reached around 7, I think) but CCNSHS only had 1 for their first run and 2 for their 2nd run. It was obviously an advantage and contributed to the final results.

Below is a video mix of the 2 runs for CCNSHS:

After an hour, the results were in and the awarding ceremonies started:

3RD PLACE: Philippine Science High School
rube goldberg - philippine science high school

2ND PLACE: University of the Philippines High School - Cebu
rube goldberg - UP high school cebu

1ST PLACE: Cebu City National Science High School
rube goldberg - cebu city national science high school

I’m sure no one is prouder that day than the Cabanilla clan who were all there to support but the alumnus in us also felt proud that we graduated from the same high school as the champions (although I don’t think we’ll be able to create a similar one during our time. haha)



  1. thanks Eliel for posting this memorable event in our son's school life----Tita Gemma Cabanilla

  2. no problem, tita. congrats again! :)

  3. May we ask who were the judges for this event?

  4. hi. sorry, not sure who the actual judges were but the event was sponsored by DLSU's Society of Manufacturing Engineers so I would assume the judges were officials from their organization. Not sure though. :)