This weekend the Microsoft evangelists were out in force at the BBC Mashed, a hack event at Alexandra Palace.  The delegates have 24 hours to make something cool with sponsors stuff, and those sponsors also included the Lonely Planet, The BBC, O’Reilly publishers, Channel 4, The Guardian, and FireEagle (mobile tracking).

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We were there to help use our stuff, Popfly, Multi-Map, Silverlight,  etc. so really off topic for me, so I was more into helping out on the hardware side including this odd looking dual core blimp which was our eye in the sky (we needed both balloons to lift the camera and a couple of 9v batteries).

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We weren’t there to win and Paul Foster our judge on the panel quite rightly called out a cool app from the North Enders team that took the subtitles from a BBC programme (in this case East Enders), translated them into a language of your choice and then read that out more or less in sync with the original video, although sounding a bit like Stephen Hawking’s speech synthesiser.

Am I at work when I do this? technically yes as I was there representing the firm, but would I have gone anyway, probably yes, because evangelism is all about helping people do stuff, with a little nit of fun built into the equation.