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Harrow Way students make a big splash in Big Blue Fusion

March 20th, 2013
IBM Blue Fusion 2013

On Wednesday 19th March, six hand picked year 10 students (Ellie HAMBLEN, Rahul JAGARLAPUDI, Abbey PEARSON, Adam PORTSMOUTH, Ellie THOMAS and Mark TODD) ventured forth to the prestigious IBM campus near the small town of Hursley to take part in the annual Blue Fusion competition. There they faced an assortment of technological conundrums designed to test their logic and reasoning as well as their team working and initiative skills.

A short video can be viewed here.

Competing against 9 other schools, they were put to the test six times in the course of the day, each test was to be marked out of 100 and the marks collated to determine the winning school.

Event one saw the team on a perilous journey through uncharted waters. A winning combination of team work and bravery enabled them to collect enough treasure and dead sea serpents to score 84 points. A good start.

2013-03-19 15.26.16Event two saw a series of deadly diseases were sweeping the globe and our intrepid team were running a Global Vaccination Program. They had to synthesize and distribute vaccinations in order to combat the infections and allocate funds to various disaster zones around the globe in order to reduce the infection rates. This was a complex, multi-faceted challenge and the team did well to score 75.

Event three was the most successful for the team. They had to solve a series of puzzles in order to activate a cyborg. This included code breaking, counting in binary and using mirrors to redirect a laser. The team aced this event, scoring 98 and put themselves on top of the leader board with 3 events remaining.

Event 4, FORTron. A multiplayer computer game, where students had to co-operate and use actual computer programming skills to hack their way past defences and avoid enemies on their journey to freedom. Great teamwork and programming skill saw them amass a creditable 88 points.

Event 5 sent the team to Mars. They were needed to improve the algorithms for the Big Blue Mars Rover explorer. By organising a series of commands into logical steps their little Rover was released onto the surface of mars to fend for itself. The longer it survived the more points were scored. After a slow start our team did ok and scored 79.

Going into the final event, a co-operative cannon shooting game, our team were still top, but it was close. They needed a 90 to ensure victory, but this time the scoreboards were turned off and the scores were kept secret. The suspense was unbearable.

Mentally drained all of the teams from schools around the region were gathered together in the lecture theatre to have the winners revealed in reverse order, X-Factor style. They made us wait for what seemed like an eternity, but eventually the team from Harrow Way were crowned IBM Blue Fusion 2013 Champions!

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