CP Europe - Day 5: Get your game face on

By Chad Greggor

The final day at Make the Web had speakers and events that encapsulated several of the themes from the past few days. The main theme for today was entertainment, it is one of the largest in the technology field, and includes games, music and film tech. Gaming has been particularly strong in the UK economy, with game sales surpassing DVD sales last year in the United Kingdom. It was therefore a thrill to have one of the fathers of the gaming industry, Nolan Bushnell, the founder of Atari games, giving the key note.

Campus party was awash with entertainment today. The gaming stadium was functioning at full swing, the Xbox One was on display at the Microsoft stand and, to top it all off, Bushnell gave the key note speech at 12. Nolan Bushnell delivered his speech with a distinctive dry humour, sharing some information about his new venture BrainRush, a gaming platform that can be used to teach.

Bushnell said that “video games are so good at teaching because they ask you to respond.” This is the concept which BrainRush is based on; it is a unique balance of the functionality of educational software and the entertainment of games.  Bushnell also wants to “turn all the game players into game designers”, an objective which bears resemblance to Make the Web’s own credo “get people to stop using the internet and start making it.”

At Make the Web and across Campus Party the call for entrepreneurship and for users to become designers was palpable today. Nolan Bushnell closed his speech with a Q&A session, in which he gave entrepreneurialism advice: “Find the blue ocean, be where no one else is” in terms of innovation.

Speakers on the ground floor at Make the Web included Peter Nicholas who gave some advice on confidence and creativity, encouraging campuseros to “try and put things together in different ways”, rather than try to come up with something entirely new on their own.

John Loughton, the leader of the Scottish Youth Parliament, gave some inspiration into changing things and making a difference in people’s lives, saying that it is better to “have failed trying, than failing to have ever tried.” A strong message for entrepreneurialism, creativity and innovation in technology and design.

Later we attended a Telefonica panel session addressing the effects of technology on the millennial generation – those who have grown up in the new millennium. Some interesting facts were revealed in the study, including that millenials spend an average of six hours a day on the internet. The significance of this is that the younger generation is spending more and more time browsing the web, and are becoming a huge target audience for website developers.

Make the Web and Campus Party today produced some excellent speakers and gave a lot of inspiration to budding developers, especially in entertainment fields. In the late afternoon, prizes were given out for Hackathons and the closing ceremony occurred somewhat rapidly.

Personally I’ve enjoyed working with the Think Big team at Make the Web (who we’ve affectionately dubbed the #HOTBLOGGERS if you’ve been following us on Twitter) and the Make the Web event has been informative and inspirational. Much of Make the Web can inspire anyone, regardless of tech ability or experience, to make something on the internet or go into entrepreneurism, and I think that this is the overwhelming success of the event.

Chad Greggor is a third year student at the University of Kent studying English and American Literature. He is also Website Editor for student led newspaper InQuire, and has written for The Independent online student and blog sections. Chad writes on music, film, technology, features, news and student news.