App Challenge – An Experiment in Cultivation, Education, Promotion, and Innovation
Thanksgiving… typically a time for reflection. For Vectorform Seattle however, it is a time to look forward. Our shortened holiday week provided the perfect opportunity to take a break from active projects and focus on experimentation, thought leadership, and living up to Vectorform’s mission of cultivating genius. The concept was simple – divide into teams, […]
Thanksgiving… typically a time for reflection. For Vectorform Seattle however, it is a time to look forward. Our shortened holiday week provided the perfect opportunity to take a break from active projects and focus on experimentation, thought leadership, and living up to Vectorform’s mission of cultivating genius. The concept was simple – divide into teams, pitch an idea, and execute a working prototype in the 3 days leading up to Thanksgiving.
Conception – the birth of an idea
The leadership team, with Director of Execution Vito DiMercurio at point, hatched a scheme to get the entire office involved in an event that would inspire the group and give the entire team a unique way to celebrate an action packed year. What emerged was the #VFSAppChallenge. A fun, open-ended opportunity to work as a team on the technology of their choosing with self-directed objectives and milestones; hack-a-thon style!
The office would be divided into three groups each representing a project team of designers, developers, and project managers. The leadership team would play out support roles, with Vito DiMercurio and Associate Creative Director Ken Disbennett playing the role of client and mentor, and Administrative Assistant Suzanne Larson and Director Woody Floyd as end users. The clients would float among the teams and provide feedback, critiques, and re-enforce the rules, while the end users would hear the concepts at the end of the week providing a fresh and unbiased perspective on the concepts and prototypes.
Inception – 61 hours remaining
Monday morning, the office was assembled and divided into teams. After a brief intro, the teams were tasked with pitching a concept around the theme “In and Around Pike Place Market” and creating a working prototype on the platform of their choice. Within the hour, all three teams had decided on a brand name and a concept to present, as the clients made their rounds to hear the ideas and provide feedback.
Time Capture – Pike Place Market – add yourself to history!
Become a part of history – Time Capture allows you to reenact classic photos of Pike Place Market – from 1907 to present day. Unlock special features of the app by reenacting photos and sharing with your friends, learn about the history of the market and its most popular locations, and find amazing food, shopping, and entertainment in one of Seattle’s most famous attractions.
LifeLikeMe: A sharing platform unlike anything you’ve ever experienced.
It allows you to discover the greatest social activities around you, relive and explore past experiences like never before and contribute to an event in real time, allowing others to see life through your lens.
Left Coast Studios
Local(e) “not all those who wander are lost”
Whether you’re a local or just visiting, we’ll show you the sights and take you along the back-roads, based on your passions. Our personalized and interactive itinerary will map out your adventure based on three simple questions: What interests you? How long do you have? What is your budget?
With concepts ready, and schedules made, the teams were off to innovate! The remainder of the day was dedicated to discussing features, starting design, and creating backend architecture.
Continuation – 37 hours remaining
The second day was reserved for heavy-duty progress and milestone reviews. Each team came in early to get a jump on production. Throughout the day, the clients met with teams individually to provide feedback and help wherever possible. Mid-way through day two the judges threw in a twist. Since any grassroots project needs promotion to be successful, each team was asked to create teaser material; a Facebook and twitter post, along with a sneak peak of the app design. Despite this last minute “change order,” all teams delivered and the day finished strong with late night beta builds.
Completion – 13 hours remaining
The final day brought on crunch time. With the deadline fast approaching, all three teams scrambled to add the last few bits of code, finish up straggling screens and put together a concept deck to present to the clients. Pencils went down at 1:00 PM sharp and the entire office breathed a sigh of relief as pizza was delivered and the conference room filled for presentations. Each group had 15 minutes to showcase their ideas and working prototype and another 10 for Q&A. After all three teams were finished the four judges snuck away to evaluate the final results.
Judging was based on assigning a point value to criteria such as;
- Overall concept
- Completeness of proposed scope
- Prototype durability
- Project milestones met
Each team had unique and innovative interpretations of the project mission and the judges toiled and discussed the merits of each item in detail. In the end, it was nearly a photo finish with each teams score varying by only a few points.
And The Winner Is…
After all the team work, creativity, design, development, and consideration, we finally had our winner for the first VFS App Challenge…
…Left Coast Studios with their Local(e) app. The personalized and interactive itinerary that maps out your adventure based on three simple questions: What interests you? How long do you have? What is your budget?
The proof is in the pudding
“This event gave us a chance to rekindle the fire that brought us to Vectorform. That need for flexing creative muscles, making magic, working together towards a common goal, and doing that which cannot be done. As a team, we are a little stronger, as individuals we are a little more complete, and as employees we are reassured that Vectorform doesn’t just say things like “We cultivate genius.” We prove it”.
Interested in learning more? Let’s start a conversation.