I’m feeling Lucky
When I received the invitation to attend the launch of the MUK Google Students Community, I was a little skeptical and hesitant to confirm my attendance. I searched for the other reason as to why I needn’t attend and I found none, so I went.
Many a tale about Google events says they are entertaining, though it comes with a cost. This being my first to attend, I was ready before the minute hand dived into confirmation of the agreed 1400 hours. I do not want to lie that I was at ease much as this was not my first time at the Global Business Labs (GBL) but the reason this time was different.
This time round the setting was conference made with single sitter chairs aisled up along clusters of tables all facing the projector screen that served the purpose of the evening. The blue and green colors of GBL could not go incognito.
The afternoon drizzle largely contributed to the delaying of the event that started thirty minutes later but we were all good to go. Our own Victoria Mbabazi, one of the Google Ambassadors, Makerere University, opened the session teasing us with random games among which, Mention all my three names. You should have heard how heavy tongues turned on pronouncing the third. If my phonetics is to match my morphology, the name is Bagorogoza. Hope I get it right?
In the opening session, Power Mukisa, the other Google Ambassador, took us through the various Google Apps and how each works. He opened a new perspective of demonstrating how and why all these need to be enrolled into our day to day activity. He kept emphasizing the same reason, “As developers, no one is going to look out for you if you don’t market yourself.” Like I was later to learn, the biggest number of the audience were developers. Is it because we were at their college? I cannot tell.
The interaction was organized in such a way that participants needed not sit in clicks of friends instead in the groups created out of the individual’s best color of the rainbow. It is in these groups that the quiz was done. There were three different levels eliminating two groups at a time. Team Orange and Blue made it to the finals with Blue (my team) becoming the overall winner.
The quiz was based on the participants’ knowledge of Google products but more so their applicability. That is the point when some of us, the non developers did our best to spectate as the dictionary of the programming language was being leaves over.
Different speakers graced the event as they shared about their startups. Joshua Okello, the brain behind three startups including; WinSenga, a swift mobile medical platform between the user and the nearest health centre and Cipher256. Joshua is the winner of the recently concluded Innovative Prize for Africa for his idea. He encouraged the participants to take on the challenge; “Be innovative and don’t fear competitions. Our challenge as young entrepreneurs is capital, but there is money somewhere that only needs your participation. Take part.”
Iliana from Done Deal, was working with the Global Business Labs before she decided to begin her own. Done Deal is more of a negotiator for a cheaper price which, as she put it, “…is a new venture in Uganda but already existing elsewhere.”
Nicholas Kamanzi put the icing on the cake with his hunt for the craziest of ideas, “I’m looking for those ideas which people have laughed at that they won’t amount to anything. Come on board and we give you a grant.” Nicholas was representing Solve for X, and Beyond the Moon Initiatives.
The event was woven with threads of breaks as Googlers are known to be. The Factorial handclaps not to mention the free goodies that Google gave out that fueled the social media trends especially on Google plus and Twitter under the hashtagas; #GSAMUK and #I’mfeelingLucky. By 1830 hours, the event was done and many like me, I think, are looking forward to the next meet up.
Here is a link to the face of the event,