Sunday 12 March 2006

don't mind doing it for the kids...

Only last week I was moaning about having to take some work home with me. Yet here I am, happily spending my Sunday putting the finishing touches to a presentation I am going to be giving tomorrow morning.

The difference? I will be giving this presentation to a group of 14-15 year old kids on behalf of businessdynamics - "a business education and enterprise charity that aims to bring business to life for young people. Volunteers from companies introduce students, aged 14-19 years, to the opportunities and challenges of business as well as improving their key skills in preparation for the world of work."

In this case, the students will be spending their day setting up a company, thinking up a product and working out how they would sell it. During the course of the day they will be receiving a number of presentations from people like me about different aspects of company life. Apparently the session was supposed to have been cancelled, but on Thursday I received a panicked phonecall from the coordinator saying that it was still on, and that I had been recommended to her as someone who could deliver a presentation at short notice. I've probably got more pressing things I need to be doing tomorrow, but none of them will be as interesting or as useful as this. Relatively speaking, I've also drawn the long-straw. One of my colleagues will be delivering a 50 slide presentation on the role of a Human Resources department (what are the other 49 slides for?). I'm up first, and I'm giving a presentation on the IT side of a business and introducing the teams to their challenge: they are tasked with thinking up a "new" Bluetooth product that they can bring to the market and how they would sell it.

Last time they ran this, the kids came up with heaps of ideas, including:

--> a device that could be embedded in the sole of your shoe to inform the police when you were speeding

--> a chip embedded in your mattress that scanned your body monthly and reported any changes to your doctor to help with early cancer detection

--> a white stick embedded with a GPRS and a headset for the blind which would aim to put all guide dogs out of business

...and so it is that I have spent my afternoon learning that Bluetooth technology is named after Harald Bl├ątann, a Tenth Century Danish king who briefly unified the warring tribes under his leadership. So why Bluetooth? Apparently he had a fondness for blueberries....

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