Me? A judge? In a college? Why not?

The Premier Farnell Tech Challenge

I was recently invited to be a judge for the Premier Farnell Tech Challenge and had the pleasure of going back to my old school as well as my old college to help decide a winner. It’s always a pleasure to be asked by Ahead Partnership as I really believe they do good work.

The challenge was simple – to design and write software for Farnell’s famous Rasberry Pi which would make a disabled persons life easier. Not an easy brief.

First of all – I surprised how little my school had changed. It’s been twenty years since I sat in the same classroom, building a small wooden box which I’m sure my mother still has somewhere! It might have still have the same chairs – but the computers and most especially the circuit board printer are definitely new.

Second – I was surprised how much Bradford College had changed. The brand new, state of the art technology hub can only be a good thing for Bradford.

The third, and final surprise, was not that the students where engaged with this – I’ve done enough work with schools and colleges to know they would be – but that the quality of the work would be so high! From voice activated plant diaries to help dementia suffering gardeners (this could be my grandad – he would have loved it) through to automated dog feeders and even a vest that would let you play football blind I was thoroughly impressed. And is wasn’t just ideas – these things actually worked.

Anyway – I shall watch the final with baited breath and more than a little pride.

Alex Berry
Digital Strategy & Design

Ahead Partnership

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