Rube Goldberg was an innovative man who enjoyed the challenge of completing the simplest of tasks in as many mechanical-steps as possible. Purdue University, known for making cool, useful stuff, is now also known for making cool, not-at-all useful stuff. Purdue was control center to this year's Rube Goldberg Machine contest and showcased a complicated balloon-inflating and popping apparatus developed by The Purdue Society of Professional Engineers. A 14-person team spent more than 5000 hours and over six months designing and building the intricate 300-step machine. Unfortunately, these brilliant Boilermakers did not win the contest. A group from St. Olaf college took home first place with a 191-step, end-of-the-world-themed machine.