Great ideas, deliverables, presentations, collaboration, countless cups of coffee, and lots of fun! What's that? The Innovation Days at Dynatrace. You get 24 hours to spend on a project with your team and bring fresh ideas to life because innovation is the mother of progress. Where did the Innovation Days come from? And what projects did the teams create last year?
Dynatrace started as an innovative idea that was led by a small group of visionary people. With Dynatrace Innovation Days, we nurture this culture to assemble a team with one vision that can change the world around us. We gather to test ideas, build POC, improve, share the outcomes, and have fun along the way.
The current form of this internal event started in 2018 with Gdańsk Lab Innovation Day, and since then it has grown to the level of all R&D Labs being engaged, and many people worldwide participating and sharing their ideas and outcomes - the excellent projects.
And speaking of projects, here are some fantastic examples of collaboration from the past year.
ISNTT is a STEM initiative addressing primary school education in developing countries most impacted by Covid-19. The team developed a highly optimized and lightweight (less than 50KB) progressive web app for kids aged 5-12, generating math exercises. The app requires a one-time minimal internet connection and is supported on old devices.
The idea came from Software Engineer Ricardo Martinez Sanchez and his knowledge of the challenges and hurdles to education this pandemic has posed in his home country of Venezuela. And as a father and a fellow countryman, he felt compelled to do something about it - said Tatiana Gottlieb, Manager, Dynatrace ONE, and she added - We worked day and night and day again, around the clock. Coffee was pouring like rain! And 100% success, we made it!
The project that took 2nd place last year is teams.dynatrace.org, which was led by Software Engineer Piotr Krzeminski. Our Labs grow, it’s a fact. So, from the very beginning, the project team vision was "a one-stop-shop for learning about teams and people at Dynatrace: what they're responsible for, what's their charter, how to reach them, how they fit into the overall picture, and much more". This same vision quickly attracted four other talented people who felt the need for such a service and were willing to work on it.
Innovation Days are a great opportunity to create something, have a set amount of time for it, and do it as part of your work day. Usually, it's hard to get such an amount of time to try out new ideas. Another reason was to get a grasp of the company culture. - said Piotr - We're currently working on bringing the interactive mockups to life. Thanks, Anna Czoska, Uriel Salischiker, Thomas Pollak, and Michael Chugaev, for co-creating such an awesome team!
The goal of DYNAMIND was to design, construct, and write software for a mind-computer interface that would allow controlling Dynatrace with only the power of the user's will. The project team wanted to make something cool and extraordinary. One source of the idea was the Stranger Things series, in which the main character has supernatural powers over matter. It took 16h of work and loads of food from vouchers.
We've reached the goal of constructing a working prototype – the idea was not to make something useful for day-to-day work but to have fun and prove that even the most complex tasks can be achieved in no time with the right team. 😊 - said Krzysztof Suchcicki, Senior Software Engineer - Innovation Days are fun and a breakfrom regular work tasks.
CANDYSHOP was a candy cash register with face recognition to detect the customer and automatic candy detection. The team was inspired by the Hagenberg Lab candy fridge, where you must book the candy at an online cash register for statistics. They wanted to improve the workflow and lower the probability that a colleague forgot to book their candy after taking it from the fridge. Final result? CANDYSHOP detects the candy the customer wants to register.
The whole process took about 25 hours and so many cups of coffee that the count wouldn't fit here. - said Daniel Kreuzer - We are happy with the outcome. It would need some improvements because we used a paid cloud service that we want to replace. And, of course, we will join the next edition of Innovation Days!
The bottom line: Our Innovation Days have always been about having fun while bringing innovative concepts to life together with other tech enthusiasts. And we would like to keep it that way. It's not a popularity contest. Voting and awards were never the goals of Innovations Days and should be just a way to appreciate the most extraordinary projects.
Read more about Innovation Days. Peek behind the scenes about the Remote Innovation Days 2021 edition here.