Interview with Stanislav Hadjiiski, VMware
His path with the company started more than 2 years ago when he was accepted as an intern. Since then Stanislav has been constantly fostering his skills and learning by interacting with his colleagues and by participating in various training, conferences, hackathons, etc.
His exceptional learning and professional development experience at VMware inspired Stanislav to take the best practices from the company and bring them to the students of Faculty of Physics, where he has completed his education. Last year with the support of VMware he and several other enthusiasts established the Inventor’s Marathon at Sofia University. We interview Stanislav to learn what role does VMware Bulgaria play in the education of future talents.
Tell us a little about the history of the Inventor’s Marathon at the Faculty of Physics? How did you come up with the idea?
Ever since I am a regular participant in our local hackathons at VMware. Each time it is a new experience, but I am always having a blast. Although my team is not always among the top-scorers, the opportunity to take part in the event is the biggest prize for me – you get some time break from reality and focus on whatever you like in the company of your friends.
I shared this amazing experience with some of my fellow physicists. Soon, we realized that we simply needed to have a similar event at the Faculty of physics. We decided to keep the IoT topic since we thought this is as closest as a hackathon can get to the ideas of our students. This is how the Inventor’s Marathon was born. We had a successful kick-start last year, so we are now preparing for a second edition.
What’s the mission of the Hackathon and what is VMware’s contribution to serving that mission?
Organizing a hackathon is not an easy task, especially if you have never than that before.
Fortunately, VMware were right next to us since the very beginning. They helped us get the organization for the event going, then provided mentors for some of the teams and judges for the final scoring. They are also sponsoring us and thus making it possible for us to provide free project materials to all our contestants.
What types of inventions are made at the Hackathon? Have any of those been commercialized? Why not?
While I haven’t heard about anyone making his or her first million out of those projects yet, I was amazed of how much work and passion were invested in those creations. I am also aware of the fact that some of the prototypes are still being worked on, getting better and closer to completion, so I guess sooner or later you will be able to find one of those inventions in a nearby store.
What are some of the most prominent hackathons around the world that you’d love to take part in? Why?
As a big company does VMware successfully promote innovation?
However, at VMware we understand that innovation can as well be beneficial to our projects – it can help us dramatically improve our existing code or even be the foundation of the next generation of products. This is the reason why there are a lot of options to innovate in the company. I have already mentioned the internal hackathons where one could work on any crazy project he wants.
There are also the special “innovation” sprints during which we try to improve our existing products. It is possible to share thoughts and ideas at conferences and talks. If you have something good, it is also possible to use one of the numerous company-level programs that can help you find the time, budget and people needed to turn a good idea into reality. Actually, this how some of the new VMware projects are born.