TechEx – a fantastic success - 23/07/2012
Wanganui’s Mayor Annette Main has described TechEx 2012 as a “fantastic success.”
The free three day technology expo, held in the War Memorial Centre, attracted more than 10,000 visitors who were introduced to all kinds of technology including prototype robots, 3 dimensional printers, face recognition software, animal identity tagging, an on-line community profiling system and a cosmodome. Wanganui residents were also able to find out when ultrafast broadband would be available in their suburb.
“People did not stop coming from the moment the doors opened at 10.00am on Friday morning until the expo closed on Sunday afternoon,” Mayor Annette Main said.
“There were people of all ages and interests, both from Wanganui and much further afield and the exhibitors were delighted by the number of visitors and the interest they showed in their products and services.
“Wanganui is one of the first places in New Zealand to start building an ultrafast fibre network and roll out high speed broadband. In another first we took the decision to hold a technology expo so that people could find out what ultrafast broadband means and the kinds of opportunities that will become available to them.
“The Wanganui Chronicle came on board with the Wanganui Digital Leaders Forum as a partner setting up and managing the event and Ultrafast Fibre Ltd were the sponsors. This collaboration has been incredibly successful and a model we will use in the future.
“It’s been wonderful to highlight what can be achieved and what the future holds for people in the smaller provincial centres once ultrafast broadband becomes fully available.
“This will revolutionise the way people live, work and play and Wanganui is the first place in New Zealand to enable our community to see what this really means for them.”
In addition to the exhibition a speaker’s programme sponsored by the 2020 Communications Trust ran for the whole event. The programme started off with 360 primary and intermediate age school children attending a special education session on the Mathletics software programme and the PaPeRo prototype companion robot from NEC. The areas of health, the rural sector, business and the community were also represented throughout the weekend and culminated in the 2020 Communications Trust Headlight Series speakers Laurence Millar and Don Christie.
The speaker’s programme was videoed and streamed live via the TechEx website and all sessions are available to view at www.techex.co.nz.