News media and Twitter are abuzz with reports that Black Eyed Peas rapper Will.i.am and reality show creator Simon Cowell are planning an X Factor-style talent show to find the next rising tech star like Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg.
In an exclusive story with the UK-based The Sun, rapper Will.i.am is quoted as saying, he and Cowell are ““working on a project called X Factor for Tech - and it’s going to be out of this world… Singing and performance create a couple of jobs. But this will create lots…It’s about getting in touch with youth and giving them a platform to express themselves - whether that’s in science or mathematics.”
The proposed reality show is only at the talking stage without details for how it would work and when – or even if – it’ll actually make it to TV. But the fact Will.i.am and Cowell are discussing it ramps up tech’s image as being cool rather than geeky and just for nerds.
In the same way X Factor brings undiscovered singing talent into the big time, some tech entrepreneur with the next hot idea like Facebook, or a hit game like Angry Birds, could come out of the shadows and become a tech star if Will.i.am and Cowell’s idea takes off.
Will.i.am is one of the best known entertainers who uses his fame to promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and to get kids excited about tech careers. Last year, he teamed up with Segway inventor Dean Kamen to produce a back-to-school TV special i.am FIRST -- Science is Rock and Roll promoting education, science and technology. The show included other rock stars too like Bono, Steven Tyler, Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber.
Read a blog Will.i.am wrote in the Huffington Post last year headlined Science Is Rock'n Roll and Technology Is Recession Proof.
Watch the full TV show - i.am FIRST - Science is Rock and Roll – below.