On July 16, Joseph Jones and Bethany Wilcoxon visited with Business Horizons students to share why they love Iowa. Jones explained he heard some rumors about Iowa prior to choosing to live here. Jones shared that one of the rumors was, “There were more hogs than people.” Jones and Wilcoxon then invited advisors to come up on stage to answer questions. The advisors were asked, “What’s your name? Where are you from? What college did you go to?” Some of the advisors were born outside of Iowa.
The next question was simple, “Why Iowa?” Most answers were because of jobs or because Iowa has great opportunities. Some of the adults had different, unique, and funny answers. One advisor told a story on how their friend loves Iowa because crime rates are low and occasionally comical. For example, someone once stole a Santa out of their front yard! Another advisor said that her husband got a job in Iowa, and she didn’t like Iowa at first because she thought of it as just a place full of corn. Eventually, she grew to love Iowa. Some of the other answers to “Why Iowa?” included the affordability of Iowa and how nice the people were.
Nowadays, younger people are earning enough money to retire early because Iowa has good connections and job opportunities. Studies show there are roughly 66,000 job openings in Iowa and even more to come. There are even more surprising things to know about Iowa that students learned in a game Jones and Wilcoxon had them play. The game was simple – guess where in Iowa the product is made. Products included Cookies Bar “B” “Q” sauce, battleship parts, and Blue Bunny Ice Cream. The game illustrated to students how much is made in Iowa, and the results surprised a few people.
By Mikayla Deters
It’s hard to believe that the brand-new technology track, Industry T, for Business Horizons (BH) started with just the word ‘bro’. Alex Gates, the adviser for Industry T, had been a part of BH for multiple years before the creation of the current technology industry.
In his years of being an adviser, he had noticed students that had ideas for software or applications. One year, a student approached him with the idea for an app during a meeting. Gates had asked students in his industry if they were aware of an app titled Yo, where friends could send others notifications with the word ‘yo’. Many of the students answered Gates that they had never heard of the app before, to which he explained the main idea.
“I showed them and they’re like ‘that’s the dumbest app of all time,’” he said. Not long after he explained the app, a student suggested an app titled Bro. The student explained that while it was similar to Yo in some ways, the user would be able to customize the amount of o’s in ‘bro’.
“You can be like ‘bro’, ‘brooo’, ‘brooooo’, right?” Gates said, “I’m like ‘that’s hilarious.’”
Gates mentioned the idea for Bro to a few of his coworkers. Throughout the week, Gates, the student, and a friend of Gates’ were able to create early versions of the software while still doing normal work at BH. By the end of the week, the three were sending ‘bros’ to each other. “We ended up finishing it and getting it to the point where we put it in the app store,” Gates said.
Not long after the three had created the app, a TV show called Silicon Valley released an app called Bro. Even though the app Silicon Valley had released was different from that of Gates and his two partners, many people from across the world downloaded it.
“Since the app was called Bro, thousands and thousands of people downloaded the app and started using it,” he said. “So there was a spike in usage and popularity with this app and we were getting bros from people all over the world like bro-ing at us and bro-ing back. It was such a fun sort of thing that happened.”
After those experiences, he noticed that students had ideas for usable solutions that could be built with software.
“Bro is a dumb idea, but it was still smart in terms of its execution,” Gates said. “I feel like 16, 17, 18-year-old kids when they’re working on this can come up with really good ideas and so Industry T facilitates a way for those ideas to come to life and for us to work together to achieve it.”
Gates explained that he was excited to see the ideas students would come up with, including the app that Industry T spent BH working on this week.
Industry E was working on a new innovation when an explosion happened! The explosion happened during the Junk Game, a game where each industry picks out old, worn items and use them to make a product.
While acquiring items to make the portable appliance, a team member from Industry E accidentally set off a fire extinguisher, projecting an abundance of yellow powder within an eight-foot radius. The powder got all over the floor and made it a very sticky (and yellow) situation. It scared several people and from others, received a few chuckles. The Business Horizons staff cleaned up the mess. It took teamwork and a lot of scrubbing to clean the mess. After the incident, everyone got back to work and came up with an amazing invention.
Industry E presented their product and grabbed the audience’s attention right way. While trying to get it to the table, the portable appliance fell apart. It did raise a few questions if it was a good idea to invest into the item, but once the Industry E members started to talk, all concerns raised were gone.
Industry E came up with a portable grill called Zuma. It comes in any size and its energy is generated by a bike. For it to operate, users turn the pedals on the bike and it starts working. In addition, it has a mini fridge for storing meat or food. You can bring it to any event, such as RAGBRAI or camping.
Throughout the week, Industry E worked hard. They split up into three teams to get things done faster.
“We have a product manager to keep us on task and tell us what is most important to get done that day,” said Devin Warmuth, an Industry E member from Adel-DeSoto-Minburn High School.
When the members of Industry D first set eyes upon the hodgepodge of objects that would eventually become their product, they weren’t sure what to do right away. David Williamson, who’s been a speaker at Business Horizons for over 20 years, led the industry members of Business Horizons through a game called the Junk Game. The objective of the game was for each industry to create a unique product out of an assortment of items.
David Williamson reassured the Business Horizons students that it was alright to be uncertain about a product at first. “A girl said ‘I don’t know,’ and that’s the most exciting thing.” He explained — not knowing what a product could become meant that it had lots of potential.
Once they figured out how the objects could be repurposed, Industry D knew how their product would be able to help others.
Industry D created the Bodular, an exercise bike that puts users in a simulation where users can bike with other Bodular users from all over the world. A translator allows users who speak different languages to understand one another and the device tracks calories and miles as well, allowing users to work out from the comfort of their home. Using a Bodular can also save money on your health insurance. The more users ride it, the more they get off their health insurance.
The members of Industry D have been working hard and putting their minds together to ensure the Bodular meets its full potential. “It’s a great team to work with,” said Josi Hasler, a student from Garner-Hayfield-Ventura High School. “There are so many great people and ideas.” The Bodular retails for $130.
What are the odds that in the course of 15 minutes an old microwave would morph into a cockpit to a motor for personal helicopter named the Rotor Mobile? When industry A initially started building their product, during the junk challenge the first idea was brought up by an incoming junior Jake Kurt, of Independence High School. His idea was to make the microwave into a fire proof safe with its own ventilation. Once that was brought up another idea was born. To make a portable one-seater transportation device that was more time efficient and more convenient than a regular car. Members of the industry got to work. They started off by connecting a pipe to a tire, putting a chair on top of a microwave, transforming CD’s into headlights, and adding cooled cup holder.
Duct tape sure did become their best friend when it came to putting it all together. As this innovation was undertaken the team came across an issue. The chair they were going to be using could not be a chair because it went against the only rule. An item cannot serve the function it was built for, but has to serve the function of something else. After hitting this dead end one of the team members paved a new pathway and shouted out, “The chair could be the cockpit of the helicopter!” and from then it was a go. They all started suggesting collaborative ideas, working together and creating the framework to which their product would be based.
A few days after the junk challenge the project has changed in various ways. Not only are they trying to make the product smaller, durable and safe but also are trying to make it “fresh, spiffy and convenient for the everyday person,” as Gavin Tierney a senior from Pella said. The targeted audience for the Rotor Mobile is younger public and those who want to save money and time. As their slogan says, “Put time back in people’s pockets.”
Senior and Product Manager Joseph Pietrocini added, “It would have a cult following for sure. Grab a lot of young people’s ears and the people who do not like to waste time and save money.”
As a team, the members of Industry A have become more comfortable and open to sharing ideas. When asked the question concerning teamwork and collaboration Joseph Pietrocini said, “We all have different ideas and strengths so that makes us a better team. Some people are good at this and some at that which makes working together a lot easier. Every day we become closer and get better at understanding and cooperating with each other.” The teamwork and connection this group portray has made it easier for them to complete their to-do list.
Acknowledging and taking time to fix their errors has helped them progress into a better working team. Valuing communication and showcasing their creativity has helped the Rotor Mobile evolve into a better product. “We have high expectations for our product which demands everyone to use their all, which lead to a high-quality outcome,” Pietrocini said.
During Business Horizon’s annual battle royale of the Junk Game where each manufacturing industry fought to grab vital pieces of equipment to make a profitable machine, one industry stuck out from the others. Industry C created a new and unique way to garden and improve homes one garden at a time. It was named Garden Ease, which as the name suggests, allows for easier and more efficient gardening for plant lovers everywhere.
The group originally created a machine called the Harvester, a creation meant to collect and mine resources for agricultural or economical purposes. The group had some initial challenges with communication skills within the first 48 hours of Business Horizons, but is now moving along smoothly and efficiently. Industry C is the only group to pick an agriculturally based machine.
The change to Garden Ease instead of the original Harvester concept came after a realization that gardening is a much easier trade to market in, as opposed to resource mining. Garden Ease weeds, tills, fertilizes, seeds, and even waters gardens. The Garden Ease is also completely autonomous, meaning it’s remote controlled. The futuristic build of Garden Ease is revolutionary and attractive to buyers and investors. The buying price of the Garden Ease is $999.00.
During the Junk Game, led by David Williamson, Industry C had the most trouble communicating. However this is to be expected early on in Business Horizons. Teagan Vander Waal, an Industry C engineer, said, “The whole group really improved communication-wise near the end of the game. I feel that we really worked well together and didn’t really need a leader.”
Going into the Junk Game, Industry B had no strategy. They saw what they liked, and they grabbed it. Initially, their items consisted of a long hose, a pool pump, a flat screen tv, a coffee can, and several other objects. Through the “generosity” of four other industries, they received a metallic blue, micro My Little Pony backpack, a dirty air filter, a microwave, and a biology textbook. Using the astounding duct tape skills of Dallas Davis and abounding creativity from all members, they created the Nanogram.
The Nanogram is an educational nanny for children when their parents aren’t home. The pool pump became the body and its hose arms had the ability to clean all messes. The pony backpack turned into the friendly face. The long hose wrapped around the base of the microwave, making the Nanogram corner free and completely childproof. It also comes with a remote (formerly a broken calculator) that can be used from anywhere in the world.
Spokespeople Alexandra Herrera and Darrel Saina gave a pitch highlighting the key points of the Nanogram and its price of $999 – for the home model that is.
As of late Monday afternoon, the Nanogram is no more. Now it’s the Sam! Style Me. The Sam! Style Me, will be debuting at New York Fashion Week this fall. This machine is a state of the art hair styler, it does your makeup, and creates outfits tailored just for your individual look.
It customizes the clothing and beauty looks to your own personal style. The Sam! Style Me, can suggest new clothes for you and even buy your outfits with its enhanced artificial intelligence technology. This same friendly AI gives encouragement for the outfit you’re wearing.
“This is the new Alexa” team member Kate Landhuis said. “It gives you a ton of hype on your outfits.”
There is also a free app you can download that controls the machine. This app allows you to purchase and rent clothes picked just for you. The Sam! Style Me. retails for 3 payments of $199. It can be purchased online by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 1-800-SAM-STYL.
By Mikayla Deters
As the newest addition to the Business Horizons program, Industry T had multiple obstacles to overcome throughout their journey this past week. While a majority of the industries were working with physical materials, this group was tasked with creating their own virtual ideas of what their product would be.
Industry T’s efforts focused around an app titled Früm, which was based around a list of goals and tasks for an entire household. The app is created around a framework titled Scrum, which helps to track the completion of tasks to achieve specific goals. For each task, sticky notes are moved through different sections of “to do”, “doing”, or “done”. Each goal that a group creates includes many different tasks to be completed. Früm allows family members to keep track of the person in charge of each task, to the time limit for completion.
Sean Wilson-Brynoe of Fairfield High School from Industry T, explained that relationships were organized as different users making up a family sharing many goals, while also keeping each of the families separate. “if we want to connect families, that’s a functionality we can add but right now there are multiple users connected to one family and one family has multiple goals and multiple goals have multiple tasks,” he said.
Signing up for the app itself would be relatively simple for any family members who would want to join Früm. To join the app, Wilson-Brynoe explained, would be just like any other website. “The interface is kind of self-explanatory so everything will be easy to find: a sidebar where you click ‘add goal’ and you have all your options come down on the right side,” he said, explaining how the layout would be similar to a dashboard.
To get future users excited, the idea was brought up by multiple students to create a sort of working prototype online where those viewing the products would be able to see the very basics. Students would be working together to create a web-app that showed basic characteristics of Früm. Wilson-Brynoe mentioned that the industry would be purchasing a domain name so that the product could be publicly viewable from any device.
For demonstration purposes, the group was focused on laptop presentations, while for the mobile view, they will be using a presentation board to show the functionality — more is to come however. “We’ll be building an actual application to show the different functionalities and how you can create accounts and move things to kind of live a demo of the app. I call it sudo-functionality. That’s our plan,” he stated.
While their competition is mostly full of physical creations, Industry T will be showing off their prototype for Früm. The group of students are also showing the opportunities for future Business Horizons camp members as the first year of Industry T.
One of the first things rugby coach Chris Draper asked the students at Schipper Stadium was how many had rugby experience. Maybe three people raised their hands. However, their lack of experience didn’t stop them from going all in. The combination of positive mindsets, competitive attitudes, and general restlessness made for several great five minute games. Starting with almost no knowledge on the sport, the Business Horizons students quickly picked up on the rules and techniques.
At the end of regular play, Industry C was undefeated and Industry E was in last place. As tournament play began, Industry E moved up the ranks and was set to play in the final game. Industry C let one too many runners get past their defense and ended up placing third. In the final game of B against E, there were some tough accidental tackles and great fast break plays.
In a true underdog story, Industry E ended up winning 2-0. As their team talked over the game the next day, Payton Klarenbeek of West Lyon High School said, “It was a team effort and we came together when it counted.” Jake Northup of Dowling Catholic High School referred to the game as “a full send.”