Top 6 Events of 2013

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Another year has come and gone, and with it we reflect on the hundreds of inspiring, entertaining, and celebratory events that took place at Microsoft New England in 2013. Though the NERD Center played host to hundreds of diverse events throughout the past year, we’ve chosen the top six most notable, groundbreaking and downright cool events of 2013. Here we go!

  1. HACKFit Boston: Back in September we were introduced to the concept of HACKFit, a weekend long competition where early stage fitness-tech concepts become startups. The catch? Participants don’t rely on endless cups of coffee, fast food, and complete isolation. Rather, they are continually rejuvenated with fitness classes, healthful food, adequate sleep, and camaraderie among participants.
  2.  Product Camp: This “unconference,” organized by and for participants, was a hit! The full-day conference returned to Boston for the sixth time in May to a packed audience. Over 300 members of the product marketing and management community turned out and tuned in to over 30 sessions on product development, marketing and design, startups, and career development.
  3. Music Hack Day Boston: In a 24-hour period over 60 music hacks were conceptualized and created during the world’s largest music hackathon. Over 200 hackers teamed up in November to change the face of the music industry. They explored technologies, envisioned ideas, pitched their projects, and then brought them to life!
  4. Microsoft Innovation and Policy Center: In October Microsoft New England celebrated its 5th anniversary with the opening of the Microsoft Innovation and Policy Center (MIPC). Annmarie Levins, Associate General Counsel, explained the goal of the Center is “to bring together the region’s key stakeholders from the technology, broader business, academic and government communities to respond to important issues that are byproducts or unintended consequences of technological advancements…. to use the Center to anticipate the needs of New England citizens and governments as this next wave of innovation transitions from research to reality.” As 2014 approaches, our excitement and dedication to the Center only increases!
  5. DigiGirlz 2013: More than 100 high school girls from the Greater Boston area were invited to the NERD Center in March to experience first-hand what a career in technology is all about. The day was rich with hands-on and interactive programming and also provided the girls with career planning assistance, information about technology and business roles, thought-provoking exercises, and interesting Microsoft product demonstrations.
  6. Root Cause 10th Anniversary: One of our favorite non-profit partners, Root Cause, is no stranger to our blog! Having featured them several times throughout the year, it is only fitting to add them to our list of the year’s top events. In December we welcomed Root Cause back to the NERD Center to celebrate their 10th anniversary at their Winter Reception. Throughout their ten-year history, Root Cause has mentored and transformed over 60 social purpose organizations throughout the Greater Boston area. At their Winter Reception they announced the upcoming 2014 Social Innovators. Here’s to another year of success!

So there you have it – the year’s most exciting and memorable events! As we move into 2014, there will be plenty more events to share. Stay tuned and happy New Year!


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