Imagine Cup so far a journey with Team Siymb from the University of Exeter


Day 1 of the presentations, the Peoples Choice Award. The event was a presentation showcase the votes were to be collected from Microsoft TechReady attendees, TechReady is an internal Microsoft technical readiness event so the attendees are a mixer of engineering and technical staff.

Team Siymb @siymb_com spent the day refining the presentations and experiencing some amazing activities. The  team got to do IoT with Raspberry Pi and Qualcomm and also had a hands on experience with Hololens.


Team Siymb was ready, the event had a few thousand Microsoft staff worldwide attending. The goal was to get as many votes as possible from the attendees to win the people choice award.

The team also have all the backend services ready and with an Internet connection to their Azure Cloud the system live and they asked for Microsoft staff to sign in with their linkedin profiles so we could get real event data into the system and use this data via Microsoft HD Insight and Power Bi to create a event dashboard for the live finals the next day.

All I can say is this was a huge successful with staff from various teams,countries and nationalities signing into the system.

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We headed back the University of Washington for day 2 of practice for judges presentation, first job was to churn the data the team collected at the event this was another long day and the team gave up for sleep at midnight for a early morning start for finals day.

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Judges Presentation Day

Day 2 Presentation Team Siymb judges presentations slot was at 3pm the very last presentation of the day.

We had all day to wait and watch. We saw the other team arrive and leave to setup for the Campus showcase the pressure was building and building. So we decided to have a walk around the campus show the team the various activities which were taking place.

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Final presentations

The team had 10 minutes to pitch the Siymb proposal including a live demo of the wearable, data, handshake and show the visualisation of data which collected the previous evening at People Choice.

Innovation Judges

Dee Dee Walsh

Dee Dee Walsh runs product management, marketing and business development for Mobilize.Net. She has spent her entire career in technology and has a long list of businesses and products that she has launched including Visual Studio, Visual Studio Team Edition, Visual Basic, MSDN, Access, Foxpro, Visual C++, Microsoft Store, Pinpoint, and Windows Marketplace. In addition, she has worked extensively to build the Microsoft partner ecosystem having built and managed the Visual Studio Partner Program, Windows logo program and numerous partner initiatives. She also spent several years as a product planner working on Microsoft infrastructure for ecommerce and anti-piracy technologies.

Prior to Microsoft, she ran product management and marketing for ButtonWare, the first shareware company.

Prashant Sharma

Prashant Sharma represents Microsoft Ventures and is based out of Seattle. His team operates startup accelerators and outreach around the world. He works closely with startups and help accelerate their growth and development. Prashant has been with Microsoft for nearly 10 years with experiences spanning services, consulting and strategic operations. Prior to Microsoft, Prashant worked at Siebel Systems and Hewlett-Packard in functional engineering roles focused on Healthcare, Financial Services and Automotive. He advises startups and currently sits on the board of Leadlab and Ideazword. Originally from India, Prashant lives in Bellevue, Wash. He is married and has one child.

View Prashant's LinkedIn profile.

Anthony Salcito

As Vice President of Education for Microsoft Corp.’s Worldwide Public Sector organization, Anthony Salcito works with education institutions and partners globally to embrace technology to optimize learning environments and student achievement. In this role, Salcito oversees the worldwide execution of Microsoft’s vision for education and its partnership and technology outreach efforts.

Salcito has created several programs that have been leveraged broadly to support the company’s giving efforts and Microsoft’s Connected Learning Community initiative. He created the Microsoft Technology Friends Network, which links IT professionals and developers to schools and nonprofits to donate their technical expertise to aid with technology support.

Salcito joined Microsoft in 1992, helping to architect Microsoft’s marketing outreach plan in the early 1990s. During his initial years with Microsoft, Salcito had the opportunity to influence marketing and one-to-many programs including the product launches for Windows NT and Windows 95.

Salcito is involved with a variety of outreach projects; he has served on the board of directors for Stevens Institute of Technology WebCampus, and currently serves on the boards of the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) Junior Achievement of Washington, the European Foundation for Management Development, the National Community Education Association and Western Governors University.

Eben Upton

Dr. Eben Upton is the Founder of the Raspberry Pi Foundation, and serves as CEO of Raspberry Pi Trading. He also serves as a Technical Director and ASIC architect for Broadcom. He founded two successful mobile games and middleware companies, Ideaworks 3d Ltd. and Podfun Ltd., and served as Director of Studies for computer science at St. John's College, Cambridge. He was a Visiting Researcher at Intel. He he has been Chair of the Khronos OpenVG Working Group since 2008. Dr Upton has been a Member of Advisory Board at TTI Technologies LLC since October 1, 2013.

Todd Bishop

Todd Bishop is co-founder and editor of GeekWire, the largest tech news site in the Pacific Northwest. A technology journalist for more than 12 years, Todd covers tech giants including Microsoft, Amazon, Google and Apple, and hosts the weekly GeekWire radio show on KIRO-FM. Todd previously worked for newspapers including the Philadelphia Inquirer and Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Todd graduated from California State University, Chico, with a double-major in journalism and business.

The demo and pitch was superb, the team had a superb mix of technical and business and amazing demo of the handshake and data visualisation. The competition was very strong, especially in the category of "Innovation". The presentation was streamed live at and will be available soon on and


In the morning, we learn who are the three winners of each category, and head on to compete in the finals for the Imagine Cup.


The team were also involved in a number of interviews throughout the day including a live Q&A session on periscope see for more details



Showcase and hands-on judging

After the interviews, the team went straight into the showcase and the live demos for the judges. The judges had a number of questions and got hands on with the wearable;s and system.

Directly after that judges hands on sessions the showcase opened for the Microsoft and the public, the teams could present their projects to Microsoft "//oneweek" and "TechReady" attendees.

The exhibition of Microsoft Research Design Expo was also been exhibited and there were some amazing academic projects in addition to the Imagine Cup entries.



What's next?

In the next few hours if all goes well, we hear at the announcement of the WW finalist the 1st team from each of the categories.

Hopefully Siymb will be the winner of the “Innovation” category and we will have to get ready for the finals presentation on Friday live on stage to live audience at the event and online via

We will also learn which team wins the people's choice award.

I look forward to the announcement of the winners! For live updates check out and twitter #imaginecup on twitter and follow @siymb_com


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