Well, it's been a long week.
A couple of weeks ago I was not even thinking of going to Stockholm to receive an award. No, nothing to do with Physics and definitely not the well-known explosive prize!
An email from multinational telecoms giant Ericsson changed that. Some time ago our Map4Map.com app was entered for their 2013 Ericsson application awards.
We knew we had a good app idea, but to have risen to the top of some 200 other teams and eventually been awarded 10,000 Euros for the team was absolutely tremendous approbation.
A little bit about the app that won us the prize.Our app: map4map.com is one of the latest generation of "SoMoClo" apps. It is a geofencing app. It allows someone with no programming experience to specify geographic areas and routes and times on a web page which are then they are automatically saved in the cloud and uploaded to a mobile (currently android and Windows Phone). The mobile "child phone" then tracks its self and if the route is outside the uploaded area, an alarm is sent to one or more other "parent" phones. The alarm would be sent with in "a minute" (actually 2 and a half minutes on average for the Android version). The alarm will show the current position of the child phone. The phone its self, in the next release will give a silent visual alarm on the child phone and allow a message to be sent to the "parent" phone. The alarm will be silent in case there is an element of peril involved. The cost should work out as about £1 a month to track 4 or 5 phones.
The development of the app was sparked by Mum being physically active in her 80's and regularly visiting friends some distance away, but starting to lose her way. Living separately, I wanted to allow her independence and consequentially keep her self-regard, but still maintain a distant watch in case she got lost, especially at night.
A little bit about the Event.
So off we went to collect the prize courtesy of Ericsson. As the French would say "Les bals du chien" which interestingly Google translate comes up with "the dancing dog".
Stockholm is really richly coloured and pretty when the Sun comes out. Pinks and umbers for rendering and copper green roofs.
Reminds me of...Henley!
Ericsson had very nicely booked us into a hotel which was previously a prison. Stockholm is a very colourful city and well maintained. The hotel was no exception.
Inside (if you were on nervous disposition it's a bit stark).
Calls of "Fletcher!" and "Yes Mr McKay" rang in my ears...
Security of personal possessions should not be a problem
Actually if you were nervous, the wall mirror in the room, tall and framed to look like a guillotine, might cause a sleepless night. Actually, inspite of a really good meal at the hotel (I recommend it); I didn't finally get to sleep on the eve of the award until gone 3 am. The alarm went at 6:30. Ericsson were great hosts and the entire process enjoyable. But I think the sleepless night showed.
I made up for the sleeplessness the following night by sleeping from 9:00pm until 8:30 am and then started a leisurely return journey. I finally got back to Henley at 9:00 pm.
And finally... getting the prize, presented by Jeremy Foster, Director Marketing, Ericsson Group.
My apologies to our customers who could not contact me with their normal ease. Hopefully the guys in the office were sufficient. I'll try to make it up to you in the next couple of weeks.
PS. I got back to hear on the news there were riots in the centre of Stockholm whist we were there. News to me!
The prison (Hotel) (This webpage only exists as a standard insecure webpage however you may navigate to it by pasting the following url in your address bar: http://www.langholmen.com/en/Hotel/AboutHotel.aspx)