Andrew's Blog

Random Thoughts of an ASP.Net Code Monkey

An Invite to the Palace!

July 2, 2014 01:15 by Andrew Westgarth

Being introduced to The Queen

Last month I was extremely surprised and honoured to receive an invite to a UK Technology Reception with The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh at Buckingham Palace on Monday 9th June 2014.  The reception was hosted by The Duke of York and I was among 350 guests from all over the UK Technology industry invited to this fantastic occasion.  I received my invite for the work I’ve done in the community with user groups such as NEBytes and events such as DDD North and Imagine Cup North East, which is very humbling as I love the work I do in the community and think of it more as a hobby than actual work, many thanks to everyone in the community who has supported the events, students and our fantastic user group here in the North East!

My Invite to the UK Technology Reception at Buckingham Palace

I joined other representatives from the North East Technology Community, David Dunn – CEO of Sunderland Software City, Kevin Beales – CEO of Sunderland based Test Factory, Mike Fish – Managing Director of Dontyne Systems, Ajay Sood – Managing Director of Orchid Software and Workcast Director Gerrard Callaghan, among many others.  We were all privileged to be introduced to both The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh and we discussed the UK Technology Industry with our peers throughout a very pleasant evening.  An experience I am very proud of and very grateful for the opportunity, certainly one to remember and what a great picture to put in the family album!

Winners of the 2012 Imagine Cup UK Final are from the North East!

April 25, 2012 12:38 by Andrew Westgarth

Yes that’s right, today when I was at Microsoft UK Headquarters attending a day full of content on Visual Studio 11 and Team Foundation Server 11, the results of the 2012 Imagine Cup UK Finals were announced!  I heard the results were being streamed live at 4pm so when the time cam I hooked up to the broadcast and watched with bated breath for the results.  I’m delighted that both of the finalists from the Imagine Cup North East finals finished in the top two places, a fantastic achievement in the first year that the North East Colleges and Universities have been involved!

Teeside 0x32 came a very, very close second with their Cloud Doctor idea, a method of linking medical expertise around the world to provide help and assistance to those who don’t have access to medical treatment.  I remember seeing this idea presented impeccably at the Imagine Cup North East final a couple of weeks ago and I was blown away at how polished and ready the Web Application, Architecture and Windows Phone application was!  Well done to the guys for their fantastic idea, effort and hard work and I know that the judges had a very hard job in picking a winner because the ideas from both of the winners of the Imagine Cup North East finals were awesome!

The 2012 Imagine Cup UK Final winner is Team EyeWorks and they have created a combination of hardware and software to provide a Mobile Intelligent Retinal Analysis solution.  Combining Neural Nets, Windows Phones, Custom Lenses and Windows Azure they have come up with a fantastic idea to help with the early detection of diseases which cause loss of sight!  Again this is another fantastic idea and if you attended the NEBytes event in March you will have seen the team present their idea.  I honestly don’t know how the judges chose between the two because both ideas are fantastic!  Well done to everyone involved in Team EyeWorks and wish you all the very best at the 2012 Imagine Cup World Finals in Sydney later this year, do the North East and the UK Proud!!!

Imagine Cup North East Final Looms

April 2, 2012 12:54 by Andrew Westgarth

The Imagine Cup is a great competition for students to get involved in and something I’ve covered previously http://www.andrewwestgarth.co.uk/blog/post/2012/02/01/You-Can-Change-the-World-Through-Technology.aspx. Well 2012 is the first year that the North East has got involved and the competition is really hotting up as the teams hurtle towards the deadline for submitting their Round Two entry in the Software Design competition.

Last month we had three teams present their ideas to the group at NEBytes and in return all of the attendees gave each team lots of useful feedback ahead of Round Two.  All of the teams were asked some very searching questions about each of their respective entries and gave them a great exposure and practice in presenting their idea and answering questions, they all handled it very well and we all hope they benefitted from the experience.

The final of the North East regional Imagine Cup competition will be held on Tuesday 10th April and I am delighted to have been invited to join the panel of judges along with David Dunn, from Sunderland Software City, Ben Nunney, from Microsoft and Ajay Sood from Orchidsoft.  The panel will have the task of selecting the team(s) from the North East who will go forward to the UK Final and who knows then on to represent the UK in the World Final in Sydney, Australia!

This is the first time the North East has got involved and the buzz at the hack day and subsequently seeing some of the teams at NEBytes last month has been amazing and I’m really looking forward to seeing what the teams have come up with at the final next week.  I hope this is the start of a long association between North East students and the Imagine Cup.

You Can Change the World Through Technology

February 1, 2012 05:33 by Andrew Westgarth

Are you a student in the North East and interested in technology or do you know of any North East based students who are interested in technology?  Would you like the opportunity to change the world and potentially win a free trip to Sydney, Australia?

If you've read this far then you must be interested, so what is this all about?  The Microsoft Imagine Cup, that's what!  The Microsoft Imagine Cup is the world's top student technology competition.  Ever year Microsoft gives students a fantastic opportunity to envisage, create and deliver a technology solution that addresses the Imagine Cup slogan - "Imagine a world where technology helps solve the toughest problems!"   The Microsoft Imagine Cup theme this year is inspired by the eight United Nations Millennium Development Goals.

Sunderland Software City and Codeworks have teamed up this year to run a regional heat of the Microsoft Imagine Cup to highlight the fantastic talent that exists in our great region!

Imagine Cup North East - Are you up for a challenge? from Codeworks Ltd on Vimeo.

The Imagine Cup North East is an exciting opportunity for students to work together in teams to solve some of the worlds toughest problems, learn new skills, make new friends, win prizes (did I mention the grand final is in Sydney, Australia?) and test themselves against the other UK and Worldwide teams.

So how do you get involved?  Why not come along to one of the taster events to find out more on Thursday February 2nd in Newcastle (17:30-20:00) and on Friday February 3rd in Teeside (17:30-20:00).  At these events you'll see presentations from Microsoft about the competition, kits available and outcomes required and then on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th February you'll be whisked off to a secret location for a 36 hour non-stop hackathon to work on your team projects

To find out more check out the Imagine Cup North East website - http://www.imaginecupnortheast.co.uk and follow the Imagine Cup North East on Twitter - http://twitter.com/imaginecupne

If you're not a student but would still like to get involved the competition is also looking for Mentors and Sponsors, so get in touch with the Imagine Cup North East, let's get behind the fantastic talent in our region and show the rest of country and hopefully the world how good they are!!

Finally I'll leave you in the capable hands of Captain Rob Miles to give you some more information on the Microsoft Imagine Cup



MCTS

Post calendar

<<  March 2017  >>
MoTuWeThFrSaSu
272812345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
272829303112
3456789

Disclaimer

The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in anyway.

© Copyright 2017