The Imagine Cup - I wish this had existed when I was in school

General Programming , USCloud

So, Microsoft is an amazing place.  I get to work day in and day out with some of the brightest people on the planet.  I’m constantly amazed with the stuff that we do around here.  But far be it from me to believe that we’ve cornered the market of super-smart people.  In fact, the schools around the world are chock full of the next wave of the smartest people around.  Because Microsoft knows that, we do this thing every year called “the Imagine Cup”. 

Basically, what we do is run a global competition where we ask students from all over the world to come up with the next great thing that will use technology.  The theme is “what can we do with technology to make the world a better place”?  And then we set them loose.  Oh, and there’s a lot of people who get involved in this thing.  No, seriously – a lot of people.  For example, last year, over 325,000 (yes 325k) students participated.  This year will likely be more than that.

So, what’s my point?  Well, this is where you come in.  Starting with hundreds of thousands of competitors, we’ve narrowed it down to 22 teams that are finalists in the Imagine Cup US (my home country).  In order to move on, we need to get that number down to 1.  Yes, only one moves on.  Moves on to what?  To where?

To the Imagine Cup Worldwide Finals in Sydney, Australia, this July.  And yes, you can imagine that these kids want to go there.  What an opportunity.  And this is where you come in. 

Go to this link: and place your vote.  We’re hoping that 100,000 people go there and help to pick the US winner, and that means you.  Vote by May 19th, 2012 please, so that we can count and determine the winner.  Oh, and we’re giving away stuff to reward you for taking the time to look.  This week, it’s Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, and 3200 points on an XBOX Live card.  Next week, it’ll be something else, like a laptop, Xbox or Windows Phone.  And every time you vote, you get a chance to win.

So, your vote is powerful. This isn’t like voting for Dancing With The Stars, or American Idol – it’s way more important (and cooler too).  By helping select the Imagine Cup People’s Choice winner, you’ll not only be raising awareness for critical social issues, you’ll also be supporting the future of technology innovation here in the US.

Visit to check out our US finalists and vote for your favorite—it’s fast and easy. And remember, the more often you vote, the more often you can win, so stop by every day!