The End of the First Chapter is the Start of a New One…

Hey folks,

So the internship has finally come to an end meaning 12 weeks of hard work and partying is finally over! But before I get too sappy, allow me to fill you in on the past week…

Monday was the team’s last day in the office (couldn’t believe it!) so we set to finishing everything off and finally pulling 11 weeks worth of post-it notes, posters and general “stuff” off of the walls (who’d have known that you could miss a kanban board!?)

In the afternoon, we had our final patent meeting to finalise all the patent ideas we had devised: 11 ideas in total, 2 of which were published, 1 closed, 1 evaluated as a search and the rest waiting… Hopefully we will see some money from one of them! It will make for a nice mid year bonus 😉

On Tuesday we set off to Leamington Spa for the final meeting with our clients. After heading to the wrong site at first (oops…), we finally arrived at the college site where our clients were based. We set up in some old English classrooms (was a little bizarre), and held the presentation and Q&A with the clients for over an hour, discussing what we had done, how we had got there, and importantly, how we recommended they should take it forward!

Although we felt the meeting had gone well and that we had pointed out some key features that would allow for growth and potential for the concept, as well as highlighted areas we felt the clients should be concerned, we weren’t entirely sure how impressed or not they were… but receiving an email the next day congratulating us on our impressive turnover in just 12 weeks, and our insightful presentation and discussion, we felt very gratified and excited that we had made such a good impression on an IBM client that is such an important and successful company.

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Wednesday saw us arriving at the office (ok, well Monday ‘technically’ was our last day…) to drop off our beloved Lenovo Thinkpad laptops (having withdrawals from its immense powerful clumpiness) before departing off to Amsterdam!

A cameo from David Stokes and short stay in Southampton airport later and we were on the plane, prime and ready for discussions about 50 Cent, Beyonce and Lil Wayne and analysis of the latest addition of Cosmo.

After convincing the taxi touts that we weren’t complete tools and that no, we wouldn’t take them up on their offer of a “ride”, we managed to make it to the hotel, and it was actually ok! All you can eat buffet breakfasts and decent rooms are always welcome…

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On the first day of Expo, we jumped straight into dress rehearsal and straight into issues with video, clickers and audio… I suppose thats why you alway have a dry run! It was an interesting experience nevertheless, even though the organisers still hadn’t managed to fix everything by the time we actually had to present in front of the judging panel (feel a little sorry for some of the teams whose presentation was effectively ruined), though our team’s presentation ran as smooth as ever (hurray for hard work and pre-timed powerpoint slides 😉 )

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It was clear that the UK teams had put in a great deal of effort when it came to presentations, as all the teams stood out as being very well rehearsed. Furthermore, the two UK teams which were actually allowed by their clients to present on the second day in front of other clients were chosen as part of the 8 finalists – IBM UK 2015, 100% success rate 😉

After several keynotes and a good look around the different stands, we then had the evening to explore Haarlem (where we were staying btw). It was great to finally get chatting with some of the other European interns about their projects in a casual setting, and hear about their months of work, and enjoy Amsterdam’s finest beverages whilst doing so!

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Day 2 saw the two UK teams present in front of IBMers and several high profile clients, and it went great – kudos to the two teams for a seamless performance! Big Data were even named the most impressive team by the front row when asked after all teams had presented!

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The rest of the day involved another explore around stands, as well as showing our demos off to IBMers in our exclusive booth (black curtain and all 😛 ). Free food and an open bar made the day rush by in no time at all (think I had around 22 cokes…) and next thing we knew were were tidying up. We of course took the opportunity to get in some final IBM photos…


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And just like that we were officially no longer employed by IBM. It still hasn’t really sunk in, and I feel out of place not being in Winchester! We were later invited to a post-expo extreme BBQ, where we reminisced over beers and burgers; discussing plans for the future. This was followed by a party train to Amsterdam to see the late night sights and throw some shapes in any and every tourist trap we could find – there is something very pleasing about hearing classic English music when abroad.

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All that was left was a few goodbyes and the journey home. Its been a wonderful ride of the cool, insane and of sleep deprivation, but we all made it alive and had nailed all the projects.

If you’re looking for a great time for the Summer, full of tech and great people, then I would really recommend you apply – you will not regret it. I have every intention of returning to IBM!

Until next time,

Team JLR out.

Categories: JLR

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