Chris Alexander

On Engineering

Imagine Cup: Highlights of Egypt

6th November, 2009

Last year the Imagine Cup Worldwide Final was held in Cairo, Egypt. Over 5 days, there was intense competition, friendly conversation, fantastic innovation and a sensational atmosphere.

Unfortunately my entry did not make it through to the final stages, however I was lucky enough to go along to Egypt with the Microsoft UK team. Here are some of my highlights of the Imagine Cup 2009.

For me, Cairo was an absolutely sensational experience, and I enjoyed every second of it. When we weren’t watching ground-breaking presentations by students from every corner of the world, we were meeting new, like-minded people, and experience the rich culture and heritage that Egypt has to offer.

If you want to find out more about what I did while I was in Egypt in-depth, you can check out my series of blog posts that I wrote while I was there. You can find them under the Imagine Cup category. Here’s a few highlights.

The Citadel

The opening ceremony was held at The Citadel, an impressive structure overlooking the entire city of Cairo. Built in ancient times and the scene of many battles in the past, it was an impressive venue to start the finals with high-profile Microsoft presenters.

The Competition

All of the competitors fought exceptionally hard for their prizes, from the presentations of the Software Developers and Games Designers (who I also heard had an all-night coding session to get a new feature done before their final event), to the IT Challenge competitors who were placed in a room for 48 hours and tried to keep their system secure!

The Pyramids

Visiting these epic monuments was a fantastic experience, and one that I’d very much like to repeat in the future. This is where I first met properly some of my Egyptian MSP friends who I’m still in touch with today.

The Cairo Gardens

After the final day of competition, we had dinner and spent the evening in some wonderful gardens also overlooking Cairo. There was a magnificent view across the whole city, and it was a fantastic event to hear the Call to Prayers from the multitude of mosques spread across the city, all ringing out at the same time.

This post is part of a series of posts about the Imagine Cup, and what you can get out of the Imagine Cup 2010. Check out the Imagine Cup category for more.