I love xkcd and one of my favorites is this comic that tries to explain a complicated concept using only the “10 hundred” most common words in English! Even cooler, somebody built a tool to help others do the same thing! I thought I’d try it out with my own research and see how it goes. Here’s the result:
Some of my work is about helping parents and children talk when they do not live together. Some parents are not married or move around a lot for work, so they use the phone to talk to their kids. But phones are boring for kids, so they don’t want to use them. I love making new computer stuff that’s better than the phone, like games and fun stuff to do without needing to be in the same room.
Some of my other work is about helping kids play with each other even if they’re not in the same room. Instead of making games with fighting or killing where the story is already made up by a grown-up, I like making computer stuff and games where the kids have to make up their own stories. That’s better for kids because it helps them learn to be better friends and more interesting people.
I also like making computer stuff that helps grown-ups make good friends and become better people. One time when this is really important is when a person is trying to stop smoking, drinking, or using bad stuff. If they can’t stop on their own, that’s a type of being sick and they need friends who are going through the same thing who can help them. Sometimes they meet these friends in rooms where they tell each other their stories. Other times they meet these friends on the computer. I make computer stuff to help them make their get-better friends and get better together.
All in all, my work is about helping people be friends and become better together.
I thought that the exercise was quite helpful. I would love to hear your experiences and elevator pitch blurbs if you try it out to explain your own work!