RS Components (RS), the trading brand of Electrocomponents plc, a global multi-channel distributor, has announced details of the ‘Big Step Challenge’, which is being launched by the show organisers at electronica 2018.
The challenge has been devised to harness the power of the show’s international audience essentially ‘walking to unite the world through technology’. The electronica trade fair attracts visitors from more than 80 countries, who will be encouraged to take part. The official electronica app, which can be downloaded by visitors to their mobile phone or smart device, will be used to count the total number of steps taken by everyone attending across the four days of the event.
The aim is to walk the distance from each country’s capital to the exhibition in Munich: it will take 436,000,000 steps to achieve this ambitious target. As each 100,000,000 milestone is achieved, the organisers will donate FIRSTLEGO League kits to community groups across Germany. This will enable teams of 6- to 16-year olds to become involved in the league who would not otherwise have the means to do so.
As well as the tech donations for youth and community groups, RS will be awarding prizes to participants including a Fender Stratocaster electric guitar for the overall top stepper for the week, and an Oura Ring, a highly accurate sleep and activity tracker, for the daily top stepper on each of the four days of electronica. In addition, any visitor achieving more than 10,000 steps in one day can visit the RS stand in Hall C5 on Stand 147 and pick up an on-the-spot prize.
The FIRSTLEGO League is a global STEM competition that attracts 35,000 teams across 90 countries. It challenges 6- to 16-year-olds to solve real-world problems with the help of a robot. Teams of up to 10 students, supported by an adult mentor, are required to show skills in robotics, computer programming, teamwork, research, problem solving and communication.
“Interesting and fun initiatives such as the FIRST LEGO League highlight the creative aspects of our profession, in addition to being a great way to introduce children to engineering,” says Lindsley Ruth, CEO at RS Components. “This Big Step Challenge is just one more way in which we can inspire young people to enter the engineering profession.”
A second organisation, ITQ GmbH, will also be supported by the electronica show organisers as part of the Big Step Challenge. For over ten years, ITQ GmbH has been involved with interdisciplinary projects together with universities in order to provide students with a practical education close to industry. Now the challenge is to inspire children and adolescents to get into technology. The Gerda Stetter Foundation “Technology is fun!” specifically aims at projects with children. Rainer Stetter, CEO of ITQ GmbH, comments: “Our society has the task of preparing knowledge in such a way that young people are better able to absorb knowledge in general, and technical knowledge in particular. This is why the foundation is called “Technology is fun”, because ultimately we all want to have fun, especially young people.”
To participate, visitors are required to download the electronica app and sign up to the Big Step Challenge. The electronica app can be downloaded from all main app stores: search electronica 2018.