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All good things must come to an end - but they did so with a bang. The Intel & DST - Innovate for Digital India Challenge, which had received an overwhelming response from across the country, ended on a high note earlier this month, with a unique quiz to mark the journey of the participants who had been in ‘accelerate’ mode for the past six months. We at Choose To Thinq conducted a special quiz for the participants and organisers that touched upon experiences, ideas and lessons that teams had gained in the past few months. The idea was to create a memorable experience that goes beyond the tedium of the typical awards night.
The Challenge which had asked people across the country to send in ideas that leveraged the use of technology in solving the country’s greatest problems, had been received with tremendous enthusiasm. Top 20 shortlisted ideas and teams were given a 6-month incubation program, with a 3-month ‘accelerator’ phase where mentors and Intel technology helped bring their ideas to life, from getting funding to market support and giving them the means needed to develop a Minimum Viable Product.
To conclude the event, a special evening was organised at the rooftop of the Novotel hotel in Pune where Choose To Thinq conducted a specially customised quiz that linked all the experiences these teams had in the past months. Called ‘Rewind’, the quiz became a way of connecting the dots, reliving experiences and ideas encountered during the journey, and also a trigger for conversations. Each answer led to someone elaborating or reminiscing about topics that the questions and answers touched upon.
For instance: -
“The previous generations were called Haswell and Broadwell. Most of you will find this "inside" something you own. What are we talking about?”
The answer: Intel, who were the title sponsors for the programme.
(Try your hand at some more interesting questions at the end!)
Questions trigger memories
At the end of each question, each team whose idea had been addressed by the question at hand, engaged in a conversation to share their views and relive their experiences in the program.
For instance, one of the questions connected to ASHA+, (a Chennai-based team who have developed devices to capture health-data instantly), one of the team members recounted her memories of the programme: “We were overwhelmed when we first came in, but it was very useful for us to see big customers, talk to them and rediscover ourselves in turn. It was wonderful. It helped us focus on our target customers, which for us was a great find.”
TCS’s Naresh, whose team was at hand to help out the participants, said that he felt it was like working with 20 CEOs, not startups. “Because they are nothing short of that. They have done everything what CEOs do - they organise, they execute, they design, they do everything by themselves. We met very inspiring people in the past three months and I am so thankful to Intel, CIIE and all the people who gave us this opportunity.”
A platform to regroup and reflect
Choose To Thinq first conducted elaborate research to find out more about participants and their ideas, about the organisers and their plans, collecting little anecdotes that happened along the way. As the participating teams came from a wide range of fields, from farming to medicine, the quiz questions too were tailored to cover all such topics, thus giving all teams an insight into the ideas of others.
After their turn to answer a question, teams who were working on devices to help the visually impaired, recollected a funny story from their experience to much applause.
“There was one question asked to us: ‘how do they buy?’ Our customers are basically the visual impaired. So we went to interview some of them and after 40 minutes of conversation - talking this and that - I finally asked the question: ‘how do you buy?’ And I really liked his answer. He said: ‘Do you think I am from a different planet? We do the same things but in a different way!’”
So it was curtains for this year’s event, but the lessons gained and paths paved will stay lit for a long while ahead!
Some more “Rewind” questions
- What connects women health workers in India, a Nokia mobile phone, and the House of Greyjoy from the Song of Ice and Fire BOOKS?
Ans: Asha. ASHA+ was the name of a selected team that had proposed a model on preventive healthcare
- E-13B and CMC-7 are two font faces whose names you may not have heard of. But you will definitely have checked them out on the bottom of certain types of valuable papers. E-13B has only 14 characters in its set. Where will you see these?
Ans: Numbers at the bottom of cheques are written in this font face. A team called Tellmate uses OCR technology, which is also used in reading cheques using such fonts.
- “No talking to cashier/ No smoking/ No fighting/ No ___ /
No outside food/ No sitting long/ No talking loud/
No spitting/ No bargaining/ No water to outsiders/ No change/
No telephone/ No match sticks/ No discussing gambling/
No newspaper/ No combing/ No beef/
No leg on chair/ No hard liquor allowed/ No address enquiry/
— By order.” This is a poem by Nissim Ezekiel that sums up what institution?
And what did we blank out?
Ans: Udhaar (Udhaar- was a team from Bihar with an AADHAR-based solution which allows easy access to credit for shopping at retail outlets and for online transactions).