The e3 annual knees-up
We all recently attended the e3 love-in – a day out of the office in an interesting, fun or swanky location, where the whole team can get their voices heard and put forward their suggestions to the SMT on the future direction of the company.

Of course, it’s also about having a bit fun and most importantly, letting our hair down over a meal and a few swift cocktails. This last part requires firm commitment and hard work from each and every member of the team and everyone involved this year should be commended for their extreme dedication in this respect. Overall, the day was great, with a whole host of challenges presented to our 50-strong team – including one of our annual favourites - Geek Factor.

Having fun with digital
Geek Factor is an internal R&D competition we run every year at e3, that gives everyone in the agency the chance to have fun with digital.  Essentially, it unites people from different teams, giving us the chance to sit down and chew the digital fat with those people we might not usually get to collaborate with in our day to day roles.

Our main mantra for Geek Factor is to ‘release the inner geek’.  There’s no denying it, we’re all pretty committed to the digital universe here, and the chance to grab budget to work on a crazy digital idea we dreamed up in the bath last night or plotted a few wintery nights ago in the local chippie is just too good to resist. We believe everyone has at least one killer idea inside them and ‘release the inner geek’ sums this up nicely. 

Move away from the normal order of things
Geek Factor sparks and encourages creativity and innovation – something we’re really passionate about here at e3 – and lets us break away from the usual daily routine and get down and dirty with digital, in order to keep our ideas fresh. This opportunity for complete digital freedom means we can then apply the same high levels of creativity and innovation to work we deliver for our clients, constantly pushing online boundaries and maximising their digital potential.

One arm bandits
Last year, entries included RFID checkin – allowing staff to check in to individual rooms in both our Bristol and London offices, so that you knew where people were. e3 radio integrated with the last.fm api to list recent tracks, and enabled users logged in via Facebook Connect to vote tracks up or down to be played in the studio. This is still being developed further and now integrates with Spotify. The Celebrometer was a one arm bandit style machine that randomly selected a team member and category and then automatically selected a product from Amazon for that person to win, using the Amazon product api.

Robots
The final outcome and eventual winner of Geek Factor 2012 was a 7ft robot – built by Senior Designer Jim’s (amazing) Dad. It announces tweets as they come in, and automatically detects users via Bluetooth, relaying messages to them left by others when the registered mobile devices are picked up. Needless to say, this fulled our robot obsession for quite some time.

This year's brief
This year, the brief, in short, is to bring Bristol to life through mobile – our main studios are based in this beautiful city. Should be fun, and I, for one, cannot wait to get started and release my inner geek (again).