IDEA Cloud: impact on an international community in Porto

Matteo Carbone

by Matteo Carbone

Last week, Porto (Portugal) hosted one of the most important mobility events of the year: the Erasmus Generation Meeting (EGM). This international occasion gathered around 1000 people from all over Europe and beyond for a few intense and inspirational days of training, exchange and networking. By mixing talented speakers, renowned companies and associations, promising students and trainees, universities and institutions,

the event boosted new connections and ideas, creating new paths towards mobility experiences and international careers.
Open ceremony at the main venue's auditorium (Porto).

Almost two years ago, I was asked to collaborate with the event's organisation to lead a small group of skilful (Portuguese) volunteers in providing IT tools and support. Due to EGM's nature, size, and attractiveness, the answer was immediately positive: what a compelling challenge!

In between other tasks, our team's main focus was to provide the event's participants with an application that could help them get to know and enjoy the Erasmus Generation Meeting at its fullest.

After several weeks of work, we finally published the EGM app.

Presentation of the app during the event.

To reach as many participants as possible, regardless of their devices, we opted for a web application as a front interface. Similarly, to ensure high availability and scalability, for an app that was forecasted to be intensively used by a thousand people, we carefully designed a cloud infrastructure built on the Amazon Web Services.

An overview of the cloud infrastructure.

The event included about a hundred different sessions spread over three days and simultaneously hosted in distinct locations. Naturally, one of the application's main features needed to grant the user an overview of the contents of the event, with the capability of easily building a customised agenda.

Moreover, since the main event was spread inside a vast venue composed of several floors, the participants needed a way to orient within the building to find the correct rooms. That's why we added internal maps to guide the users all along.

Details of the Auditorium room.

The app was also the perfect showcase of the event's organisations and speakers. Hence, the participants used the tool to acquire a complete understanding of each party involved, with multiple ways of getting in touch with them.

Information about one of the event's brilliant speakers.

Due to the networking nature of the event, we equipped the solution with social features to allow the participants to search themselves and connect in order to access each other's contacts.

The participants were able to enrich their network through the app.

The Erasmus Generation Meeting also included several other moments and celebrations, like a captivating flag parade, a gala dinner and more. Therefore, we added a fully-navigable map to help the participants reach the correct venues. Finally, the app contained a news area to keep the participants up to date with critical communications, tips and helpful information.

The feedback of both participants and partners about the app was great, and we appreciated an adoption rate of almost 100% of the target. Data-wise, it was interesting to observe how people accessed the service before and during the event. For example, the graph here below clearly shows how the participants started to use the app in the morning of each day to prepare for their favourite sessions, with peaks during mid-day, and a fewer (but not null) utilisation overnight, where they could take advantage of the map and the organisers' communications.

Overall utilization of the app before and during the event.

Of course, the team took advantage of ITER IDEA's cloud competencies and best practices

to ensure the design of an optimised, scalable and sustainable solution.

Among other appreciable results, the entire serverless architecture had a final cost of less than 1€ for the whole event.

A cloud-native, serverless approach leads to small bills.

It has been, indeed, an incredible experience. Porto granted a magical atmosphere,  between the traditional and the modern, that added something more to the whole emprise. I had the chance to work with a fantastic group of people who were able to create an unforgettable event for a new generation of creators and innovators. Thanks to all of you! Last but not least, it was the perfect occasion to discover youthful talents to add to ITER IDEA's team: we may have some good news very soon!

Are you also interested in working with us? We can't wait to meet you!