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Where Street IQ Meets Book IQ Interview with Nanxi Liu

This post continues our ‘share your story’ series of youth who have embodied our trademarked brand’s slogan:  “Where Street IQ Meets Book IQ.”  We encourage you to share this story with the hope that other youth will come forward and share their story, as well. We need your help to spread the message about the importance of Pro-Education.  Here’s our interview with Nanxi Liu, CEO of Enplug and and Founder of Nanoly Bioscience.

Tell us about your business.hip hop clothing

Enplug started with the idea that outdoor advertising such as posters and billboards should be social and engaging. We believe that people should be able to post content into the physical world with a few clicks of a button. So, my co-founders and I started building the most futuristic digital billboards and placed the billboards in the main dining areas of the most popular restaurants. Now, anyone from non-profits like UNICEF to major brands like Red Bull can post their content on hundreds of billboards instantly. Our mission is to make our brands’ advertisements be as innovative as their company. It’s been a year since my co-founders and I started the company. We grew from a 5-person team 12-months ago to now over 35 full-time teammates. We’ve also become the largest network of interactive indoor digital billboards in California.

What challenges have you faced and overcome?

Our biggest challenge has been building Enplug’s technology from scratch. Because there wasn’t any digital billboard network technology or software that could stream all of the real-time content we wanted to show, we had to do it on our own. This was quite a fun challenge for us because we had to completely use our own creativity and skills to design this billboard network. To solve this challenge, we brought on board teammates that were some of the smartest software engineers in the world. We worked tirelessly for months before the first version of our technology was finished. By recruiting the top talents, we were able to overcome our biggest hurdle of building a brand new technology.

What’s your dream for the future?

I’m a dreamer so there are many dreams I have for the future. In terms of my company, my team and I want to lead Enplug to be a multi-billion dollar company within the next few years. In terms of personal dreams, I hope that I will be someone who people can always look up to as a good teammate, friend, and leader.

In one phrase or sentence, what does mentoring mean to you?

Mentoring is sharing experiences and knowledge to help a person achieve their goals.

If you had one wish for today’s youth, what would it be?

I want today’s youth to have the confidence to pursue any dreams they have. It doesn’t take money or “luck” to get to where you want to be. What it takes is perseverance and hard work.

Growing up, I lived in a low-income neighborhood and was on the free lunch system. While my classmates wore new shoes, I had clothes donated from the local church. However, I didn’t let the fact that I had few opportunities or lack of financial resources get in the way of my dreams. I went and searched for opportunities and made sure to maximize every opportunity in front of me. For example, when my parents got me a cheap $100 piano from a garage sale, I practiced every day. Eventually, my hard work paid off as I was able to win competitions and scholarship money. My drive for making the most out of what I have translates to everything I do whether it was getting into college or starting a company.

In your opinion, name some characteristics of someone who embodies the Kool As Nerdz brand “Where Street IQ Meets Book IQ.”

Someone with street IQ and book IQ knows how to take what he/she learns from books or school and apply it into the “real world.” This person is resourceful and can figure out how to get anything done.


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DeniseMay 4, 2012Nick is raising money to build elvtaeed garden beds for Santa's Senior Center in North Pole, Alaska. His stand is in Bentley Mall in Fairbanks. Please come help support our seniors.
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- aaawww shcuks, thanks Melissa!No problem Iris, glad to help.Thanks Justin, maybe I will open a photography school then! You're welcome Kay. Yeah you could spot meter on the bright part or just get close and chimp your way to the right exposure too. I have started taking on some one on one mentoring sessions with a couple of photographers. I'm not 100% sure I like the format of a workshop and the divided attention, but we'll see. Glad you like the new layout too!
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- Hey Rachel, no problemo! I haven't done a post about harsh mid-day linghitg yet, but probably because I try to avoid it at all costs! I'll have to dig through the archives and see if I have anything that fits that bill.Howdy Chris! So glad you enjoyed that. I hope to see you sometime this year before the next Mystic!
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paul - hey todd! tx again for sharing you're inihsgt and thought process on how you do things. even though i can't go to your workshop later, it's great to know that you're gracious enough to share some of that info here on your blog! keep it up dude, we photographers (atleast I know I am!) are soaking up the info! ^^
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- See you there Todd!! I think I may just set up a tent outside the door the night bfroee so I can sit directly in front of you when the doors open .yes, that is the plan. Do you think Maggie, Jeff, Suzanne etc will fit in the two person tent???? Hmmmmm. Only for you.
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- Todd! Thanks for sharing these tips! Im going to go out and pcctriae, pratice, pcctriae! .as soon as the weather lets up again. =)btw, have you done a post on the harsh , mid-day lighting? Thanks again! You are an inspiration! =)
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- Thanks so much Todd for posting this! I thuhgot it was pure genius when you did it at Alex's wedding. I never thuhgot of using that light for rim lighting too. So you spot meter on the highlights? Please do a workshop! I will so be there
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Impact the influential lives of youth, help train mentees to follow the same path and watch how your hard work can help transform a life or even an entire community.

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Kevin Hall is a military veteran whose passion for working with youth has led to his  pro-education clothing company as well as mentoring youth as the ultimate way to create change and celebrate life.