Ignite Bletchley Park

Even if you can’t join us for the full OTA11 event, you should definitely try to make it out to Bletchley Park for Friday evening, as we will be introducing an exciting new element to the programme:

Ignite is a global event, organized by volunteers, where participants are given five minutes to speak about their ideas and personal or professional passions, accompanied by 20 slides. Each slide is displayed for 15 seconds, and slides are automatically advanced. The Ignite format is similar to Pecha Kucha, which features 20 slides displayed for 20 seconds each. The presentations are meant to “ignite” the audience on a subject, i.e. to generate awareness and to stimulate thought and action on the subjects- Wikipedia


The event-within-an-event is being organised by Ignite Cardiff’s  very own Claire Scantlebury, and the submission form is still open for speakers to come along and volunteer to give a five minute talk. The rule is – you can’t talk about yourself or your job (so no blatant self-promotion is allowed) but if you’re passionate about something or want to talk about something cool and innovative then just fill in the form behind the link above and we’ll be in touch.

See you on Friday night!

Opening Speaker – Bill Thompson

We are thrilled to announce that our opening speaker is Bill Thompson of the BBC, who will be taking a philosophical look at the way the proliferation of online and mobile has changed society and will introduce the Digital Public Space as a concept which will potentially change the landscape of society and the internet.

New media pioneer Bill Thompson is a journalist, commentator and technology critic based in Cambridge, England. He has been working in, on and around the Internet since 1984. He contributes to other publications both on and off-line, including The Guardian and The New Statesman. He writes a monthly column for new net users for BBC WebWise, and a technology column for Focus magazine

Bill appears weekly on ‘Click‘ (formerly ‘Digital Planet’ and ‘Go Digital’) on the BBC World Service and occasionally on other BBC radio and television programmes. You can find him online, working in one of Cambridge’s many cafés, or at the bar of the ICA.



Ewan Spence

Ewan  is known for his strong views on mobile technology and ensuring assessibility to it all; a love of trivia; the new media landscape on the internet; the effect technology and communication will have on the public conscious and existing businesses.

He has been active in this space for over ten years, working for a number of sites, publications and media companies, some for long periods of time, others for commissions, one-off pieces or a series of articles or shows.

As Scotland’s first podcaster, he’s been a prominent voice in the rise of podcasting and new media online, picking up a BAFTA nomination for my coverage of the Edinburgh Fringe along the way.

At Ignite Bletchley Park, Ewan will be talking about ‘Everything I ever needed to know about European politics I learned from the Eurovision Song Contest’


Alistair MacDonald

Alistair is a self-confessed geek with a fascination for transport. By trade he is a real-time software developer and radio travel presenter, two completely different skills that often get mixed up in his “pet projects”. Currently Alistair is working with the start-up Usable HQ Ltd.

At Ignite Bletchley Park, Alistair will be talking about ‘The Metro Simulator. Simulating a light transport system on a web server’


Terence Eden

Terence Eden has been working on the mobile Internet since long before it was fashionable. He consults on QR codes, mobile strategy, and mobile security matters.

His work has featured in Wired, The Guardian, The Register, and Now Celebrity Weddings.

At Ignite Bletchley Park, Terence will be talking about ‘QRpedia – linking museums and Wikipedia with QR codes’.



James Hugman

James is a geek living in Brighton. Despite being on the internet since 1991, he doesn’t have a tan, and is not an anarchist. At Ignite Bletchlye Park, James will be talking about ‘The Technologies of a Modern Revolution’.


Chris Monk

Chris is a carer, educationalist, once a teacher and now volunteer at The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park.  He is keen to encourage young people to learn about computing and whenever possible to get them to experience learning outside the classroom.

At Ignite Bletchley Park, Chris will be talking about ‘Kids can’t code’ and has asked that you show your support for the National Museum of Computing by tweeting using #tnmoc.



Dr Alex Blewitt

Dr Alex Blewitt is passionate supporter of both OSGi and Eclipse, having first been introduced before the release of Eclipse 1.0, and getting involved in the open-source project just before the OSGitransition happened with the release of Eclipse 3.0. He was nominated (and a top three finalist) for Eclipse Ambassador in 2007, as recognition of his contributions as chief editorEclipseZone.

Alex spent many years working with Java, having founded International Object Solutions Limited in 1997, just after Java 1.1 was released. Now he spends his time development on mobile platforms at Bandlem Limited, which he founded in 2010. Alex currently writes for InfoQ covering both OSGi and Eclipse, and continues to develop modular applications in his spare time. His ObjectivEClipseproject was used as the basis for the Sony Snap Developer IDE, and many are using the ZFS port on OSX, which he maintains. In what little time he has left over, he spends with his young family and has been known to take them flying if the weather’s nice.

At Ignite Bletchley Park, Alex will be talking about ‘Git and Gerrit for Distributed Code Review’.


Imran Ghory

Imran used to work in the city figuring out how currencies worked, until he discovered that it was much more fun to make up your own job. He now focuses full-time on geeky side-projects, drawing a web-comic and blogging. He accidentally built up expertise in the startup world so occasionally does consultancy and lecturing in the field.

At Ignite Bletchley Park, Imran Will be talking about ‘Cracking Cryptics’.


Security Stream at OTA 2011

Bletchley Park is renowned for its mathematics work in breaking encryption during the second world war. It is also the home of the world’s first programmable digital computer: Colossus and the National Museum of Computing. Where better to hold a security stream for Over the Air?

Security in the mobile world is increasing in prominence. Convergence of technologies within mobile handsets mean that more people have more reason to attack mobile phones and their users. From mobile payments and company emails to our photo albums, buy cheap our entire lives are centring on one thing – the handset. If we lose our phone it is more than a big deal.

As we all get hooked on our connected lives, malware and virus creators are thinking of new dastardly ways to wreak havoc and steal money from us and even from the developers of the applications we download. Developers need to think more and more about how to protect their own applications and user data, alongside being responsible with the private data they have access to.

Speakers in the Over the Air security stream will be giving attendees the low-down on how to secure mobile applications, the evolution of malware and the history of codes and ciphers:

  • What’s going on with security in the mobile industry and what’s coming up?
  •  The threat from mobile malware and how to make sure you don’t develop something bad
  • Stolen and lost phones – can mobile applications help with this problem?
  • Webapp security, signing and app stores
  •  Break the code! – A mobile application challenge for developers

Stay-tuned for Speaker Announcements….


BlueVia at Over The Air 2011

Hopefully you will have seen that BlueVia is a gold sponsor for this year’s event. This is the third year we have worked with the Over The Air team, ed and once again we are looking forward to a fun packed and creative two days.

So what can you expect from BlueVia over the weekend?

Firstly we will be running code camps for the BlueVia API’s. You can get a taster by checking out our API documentation, watching a few of our short tutorial video’s, and of course playing with our new API console from APIgee.

In addition to that, the crew from BlueVia Labs will be out in force. BlueVia Labs is the place where we release experimental stuff for you to try out and attempt to break. Attendees to OTA 2010 may be familiar with #Blue – well its back and one year older, so you can do even cooler stuff than before. Richard Spence will be on hand throughout the weekend to get you started.

In addition to that, we will be announcing two new services at OTA 2011, wandering around filming the whole event and interviewing you, plus coming armed with a ton of prizes and other schwag to liberally chuck in the direction of anyone hacking with our stuff.

To get a feel of what you may be able to do with BlueVia over the weekend, listen to Tom from Future Platforms give you his two cents on BlueVia:

[vimeo clip_id=”26050995″]

TweetALondonCab: Cabbies go mobile – what next?

Here is a chance to both show your love for London and use your knowledge of mobile to change a very basic part of living in in this city: getting a cab. This is an area that is ready for some real mobile innovation, cialis and the cabbies themselves are the ones asking for it. Richard Cudlip from TweetALondonCab is coming to Over The Air 2010 to discuss what his group can do next with mobile to make getting home fast, physician safe, transparent, and pleasant. He has helped you to get from A to B physically, now you can help his group to get from A to B in using mobile technology for better service.

Keynote Announcement: Sir Tim Berners-Lee to speak on Open Data

Tim Berners-Lee

photo credit: Le Fevre Communications

We’re extremely excited to announce that Sir Tim Berners-Lee will be delivering a keynote talk on Saturday at Over the Air. Tim has been a vociferous proponent of open data, especially in government, and will be talking about what open data means for mobile developers.

A graduate of Oxford University, Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web, an internet-based hypermedia initiative for global information sharing while at CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory, in 1989. He wrote the first web client and server in 1990. His specifications of URIs, HTTP and HTML were refined as Web technology spread.

He is the 3Com Founders Professor of Engineering in the School of Engineering with a joint appointment in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Laboratory for Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence ( CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he also heads the Decentralized Information Group (DIG). He is also a Professor in the Electronics and Computer Science Department at the University of Southampton, UK.

He is the Director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), a Web standards organization founded in 1994 which develops interoperable technologies (specifications, guidelines, software, and tools) to lead the Web to its full potential. He is a founding Director of the Web Science Trust (WST) launched in 2009 to promote research and education in Web Science, the multidisciplinary study of humanity connected by technology.

He is also a Director of the World Wide Web Foundation, launched in 2009 to fund and coordinate efforts to further the potential of the Web to benefit humanity.

During 2009 Tim also advised the UK Government’s “Making Public Data Public” initiative.

In 2001 he became a Fellow of the Royal Society. He has been the recipient of several international awards including the Japan Prize, the Prince of Asturias Foundation Prize, the Millennium Technology Prize and Germany’s Die Quadriga award. In 2004 he was knighted by H.M. Queen Elizabeth and in 2007 he was awarded the Order of Merit. In 2009 he was elected a foreign associate of the National Academy of Sciences. He is the author of “Weaving the Web”.

Speaker Announcement: Imperial’s Brian Fuchs and Vasa Curcin on mHealth

Imperial College’s Social Computing Group (fka Internet Centre) has been one of the key supporters of Over the Air since our first event in 2008. This year Brian Fuchs and Vasa Curcin from the SCG are going to present a session on mobile health. Increasingly, mobiles are being used by individuals to collect, manage and share biometric data, particularly in the area of personalised healthcare and sports, where there is a broad range of apps available to smartphone users. The implications of what is effectively “crowdsourcing” of monitoring functions traditionally associated with institutional health providers for the well-being both of individuals and of society as whole are immense and will lead to reduction of hospital readmissions, better quality of life for patients, and improved healthcare efficiency. This session will bring together application developers, NHS IT professionals, entrepreneurs and healthcare workers, to discuss the state-of-play in the mHealth arena and the future directions for integration with traditional healthcare.

Mr. Brian Fuchs is Co-ordinator of the Mobile Applications Centre in the Department of Computing at Imperial College. He has been active in development of computing support for research in the US, UK, and Germany for many years. He currently acts as a developer and researcher in several projects with a strong mobile component (TfL Mobile Demonstrator, Vortix, Totalcare, MusicShare, SpamJam).

Dr. Vasa Curcin runs the healthcare theme in the Social Computing Group at Department of Computing. His main research is in the areas of worklows, having been one of the authors of the Discovery Net software, and in particular the application of process algebras and other formal models to analysis of workflows. Another research focus is on the use of workflows as methodology for in silico studies on repositories of electronic health records, which he is pursuing in collaboration with Department of Primary Care and Public Health and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He has designed and authored the data collection and reporting framework for CLAHRC Northwest London initiative, currently used by nine projects across seven NHS hospitals.

Speaker Announcement: Data.gov.uk’s Richard Stirling

Richard StirlingWe’re very excited to announce that, in line with our focus on open data and the possibilities it opens up for the mobile developers, Richard Stirling, Head of Making Public Data Public and data.gov.uk will be delivering a session at this year’s Over the Air.

Richard is leading the central team on data.gov.uk and Making Public Data Public. Before creating data.gov.uk Richard worked on the secretariat for the Power of Information Taskforce. In that role he created Show Us A Better Way, one of the first online competitions in Public Services. Prior to joining Cabinet Office Richard worked in HM Treasury where he was engaged in both tax and public spending policy.

Speaker Announcement: Nokia’s Petro Soininen on JavaScript inside Nokia phones

Petro SoininenPetro will be hosting a no-nonsense session on getting JavaScript to work on the very large portfolio of Nokia devices, touching on developing and distributing applications that also include Flash, and a peek into Nokia’s JavaScript future.

Petro’s Chief Engineer tasks at Forum Nokia include bridging the initiatives and interests of web developers and Nokia R&D teams. With over 10 years of hands-on experience in the mobile space, Petro knows Nokia’s developer offering inside out and is glad to share his insight on maximizing your potential today, tomorrow and the days to come.

Keynote Announcement: Nokia’s Pawan Gandhi

Pawan GandhiWe’re please announce our Saturday keynote for this year’s Over the Air: Nokia’s Pawan Gandhi.

Working with Nokia as Director, Business Operations for Ovi Life tools, Emerging Markets services, since 2008. This role has given Pawan an opportunity to get deep insights on the needs and pain points of the low income consumer in emerging markets. The ‘one size fit all’ strategy does not work in these markets since the consumer has unique needs making the job challenging and exciting at the same time. The Life tool services are currently available in India, Indonesia and China and have several millions users.

Prior to this Pawan has managed several other business in Nokia during his 5 years in the company. In global business role he was also responsible for building the Video and TV business for Nokia including digital mobile tv business on the DVBh platform.

Before joining Nokia, Pawan was with WorldSpace for 6 years. He managed the India business and additionally led the mobile transmission project globally. He was part of the task force who was responsible to demonstrate the India success and growth potential to investor at Wall Street in 2005. This eventually led to listing the company at New York exchange.
Pawan started his career as an entrepreneur immediately after securing his degree in Business Management. His company provided business strategy and regulatory consulting services to start up companies in India. An entrepreneur by heart Pawan like to plays golf and enjoys movies.