Big Bang Fair Day 3: The show begins

Author: Mirren White
Posted: 16 Mar 2016 | 20:59

If you’ve been following our blog up to this point, you’ll know that today was the opening day of the Big Bang Fair in Birmingham. Our exploits in getting here and setting up the booth at the fair were chronicled in our Day 1 and Day 2 blogs, but today was a big one too.

It started off slowly at first; although we had been told it would start at 9.30, it was past 10 before there were a significant number of kids on the show floor. After that happened though, the real fun began.

From the morning until the crowds began to thin at around 3pm, we were almost always busy. All three demos we developed proved popular among the show-goers. Wee Archie in particular was an attractive centrepiece (despite some early morning hiccups!) with many crowds drawn to check out the mini supercomputer and have a go for themselves.

I spent most of the day with the ARCHER supercomputing app, which also drew a good crowd. Many people who had posted a score on our leaderboard came back – sometimes multiple times! – to make sure they were still on top and play another quick game just in case.

It proved popular among all ages, with top scores coming from the younger and older schoolchildren alike,

and there were plenty of questions about how the game worked and how to build better nodes. The top score for the day was an impressive 86,000 – and most players took a leaflet explaining how they could access the game at home and play again along with their freebie prizes.

The postal sorting demo was a success too, and turned out to be surprisingly competitive – perhaps not surprisingly! You’ll probably be able to hear a bit more about this demo in the coming days’ blogs.

The freebies that we brought with us were a hit too – particularly the Frisbees!

A walk around the hall by Mario during the afternoon saw lots of kids playing with their new Frisbees, and I heard kids walk past on more than one occasion asking their friends where they could get one as well. We’re very happy that at least some of the attendees will be going away with a fun reminder of the time they spent with us, and hopefully it may spur a few of them into entering the field - luckily we still have plenty of freebies left for the next three days! All the freebies we brought found fans in the attendees, and hopefully this will continue!

Overall, over the course of our first day we think we had over 600 visitors to the stand – a great number especially considering we are surrounded by much larger stands on the floor. We hope everyone who visited today had a good time with us and we’re now looking forward to the next few days, where with any luck the good experiences from today will continue! More to come…