November 21, 2019

Tech for Good Conference

On Wednesday 20th November a group of Year 10 students attended the second Tech for Good conference as part of The Festival of Digital Disruption.

Intended to be inclusive and inspirational, the afternoon’s speakers included Daniel Melville, Bionic Hero for Open Bionics and Mark Stanley, who is a UK ambassador for The Things Network, also running Internet of Things company, Thingitude.

In his thought-provoking discussion around the Internet of ‘good’ Things, Mark introduced two new exciting projects, funded by the Smart Berkshire programme. The separate causes are respectively improving the safety of women students and reducing the number of falls people suffer as they get into their senior years.

However, capturing Year 10’s attention the most was the technology itself, along with the incredible stories behind it. Daniel Melville, who was born without a right arm and has been part of the Open Bionics journey since 2014, spoke of his experience with a prosthetic limb.

Daniel has said “When I was younger I used to wear a lot of prosthetics that didn’t really do anything other than make me feel negative about myself. I never thought in my lifetime that I would ever be able to wear something like the Hero Arm. As a kid this was only a dream, but now it’s reality. It’s mind-blowing.”

Having demonstrated the arm all around the world, Year 10 were no less impressed than Daniel. Students Ava and Sol commented “Personally, we found the Bionic arm particularly inspiring because of the extraordinary mobility it has and the impact on people’s lives. It was amusing to hear about how one of the former models was left out in the sun and melted. We think that it was a trip well worth our time.”

Alex continued “It was inspiring that all the people that were there all wanted their businesses to genuinely help people and not just be a way to make money. I found Dan’s story especially inspiring because he never seemed to have a negative outlook on him having one arm. Seeing how he changed his life with the Hero Arm and got really involved with it and helped overcome his problems with it was really cool.”

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