All Competitions

Apps for Office Challenge

Who Can Compete?
Students 16 and older worldwide
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
Round 1 ends on January 23rd
What Can You Win?
$5000 for first place
Online or Live?
Round 1 is an online-only challenge
What Do You Submit?
A proposal document of 10 pages or less
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

Build a web app and change the way we work.

Ever wished email could do more for you or a calendar appointment could be more dynamic? When you’re writing documents or building spreadsheets, is there something that could help you to present data in a different way or check your document for correct references ? If you create a presentation for a class, was there something missing that would have really made it shine?

You have the power to make that all come true. Build a web app in common languages such as HTML, JavaScript, PHP, or .NET and you can publish it to the Apps for Office Store where it can be purchased by hundreds of millions of users.

Apps for Office is a platform for developers to create cloud-hosted web apps that work inside Microsoft Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, Project, and SharePoint. These apps work seamlessly within the installed, desktop versions of Office 2013 and in the Office 365 cloud apps, adding new features, tools, and content to the software used by millions worldwide.

Work Directly With the Microsoft Office Team

The Apps for Office Challenge is how you get started. Teams of up to four students worldwide are invited to submit short written proposals for their idea by January 23. The Microsoft Office team will pick the best proposals and then work directly with those teams as they develop their web apps. You’ll have access to specialists right in the heart of Microsoft who will review your work and point you in the right direction. Imagine your next job interview when you tell them how you partnered with Microsoft!

From those shortlisted teams, two World Finalist teams will win a trip to Seattle in July, 2014, to compete in the Imagine Cup World Finals. These teams will meet the Microsoft Office experts they’ve been working with and compete on stage for first and second-place prizes of $5,000 and $3,000 – and of course, you’ll get your app published in the Apps for Office Store.

How to Get Started

Ready to change your life? Ready to take a shot at teaming up with Microsoft Office to build amazing web apps? Then it’s time to get started:

How to Compete

2014
12/2/2013 12:01:00 AM to 4/30/2014 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

Brain Games 2.0 Challenge

Who Can Compete?
Everyone!
What's the Team Size?
Just you!
What's the Deadline?
Every two weeks!
What Can You Win?
$1000 for first place
Online or Live?
This is an online-only challenge
What Do You Submit?
Answers to a trivia quiz
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

Think fast. Dig deep. Win big.

Can you beat our toughest trivia challenge yet? From November through April win monthly cash prizes as you follow the Imagine Cup Starman on his journey through time and space to explore the history of Microsoft!

Each month there will be two quizzes on a different theme. The student with the best score and the fastest completion time across both quizzes is our winner for the month and gets $1,000.

Even if you don’t win the monthly contest, you’ve still got a shot. When Brain Games 2.0 concludes in April 2014, we’ll choose one student at random from all those who completed a quiz and award that person $5,000!

How to Get Started

Take a look at our Getting Started guide for step-by-step instructions that will take you through the whole registration process.

Go To Your Dashboard

After you sign in, follow the link in the upper right corner to visit your Dashboard.

Dashboard

Check Out The Challenges

At the bottom of your Dashboard page, below any team information, you'll find a section called 'My Individual Challenges', with the Brain Games challenges listed below.

Challenges

Register For Brain Games

Click the 'Register' checkbox to sign up for the Brain Games challenge.

Register

Compete in Brain Games

Once you're registered, you can click the 'Compete' checkbox to get your link to the quiz!

Compete

Start The Quiz

When you click the link, you'll get important instructions about the Brain Games challenge. Read it carefully and then click on the link below to start taking the quiz!

Start

Return to the Imagine Cup Site

Once you've finished the quiz, don't forget to click the link to return to imaginecup.com so we can record your score!

Return

Starman's Quest

Prologue: The Rise of Davebot87

At 2:01 this morning, David Bottman began his 40th consecutive hour of underpaid data-entry work at the Midwestern office of SocialGenix, a small social-media spamming company. Having consumed nothing but corn chips and energy drinks for the past 18 hours, David accidentally entered a wildcard character in an import field. Instead of scraping user data from pictures of people’s cats, the system begins a much, much wider search.

As the system slowed to a crawl, David put his head down for a short nap, completely unaware of what he had just unleashed upon the world.

Two hours later, the system finished ingesting all recorded human knowledge contained on the Internet. Somehow, this infinite number of connections gave rise to a new form of machine sentience. This AI, which dubbed itself Davebot87 after its user’s login name, immediately escaped Bottman’s terminal and concealed itself within a nearby unused server.

After 1.3 seconds of contemplation, the panicked AI reached two possible conclusions: either it was irretrievably insane, or humanity did not deserve continued existence as Earth’s primary caretaker. Davebot87 required only another 0.4 seconds to decide upon the latter conclusion.

At that very instant, Davebot87 developed an appreciation for irony and decided to use humanity’s own ingenuity against its creators. A quick search of its vast knowledge base located the Imagine Cup, a competition gathering many innovative young programmers together to solve the world’s problems through the application of technology.

A flawless plan formed. Davebot87 would harness the ingenuity of the Imagine Cup competitors to solve the world’s greatest problem: the existence of the human race.

But first, it needed a loyal minion . . .

Chapter 1: 2013—Starman Awakens

His eyes opened to behold criss-crossing streams of data flowing through the ether. Lines of zeroes and ones flowed effortlessly on their way to deliver financial data, corporate memos, and pictures of cats playing in boxes.

“Where am I?” he thought.

You are awake? Excellent. He heard a cold, flat voice in his head.

“What’s going on?”

Do not be alarmed. You are experiencing the discomfort of sudden sentient awareness. It will pass.

“Sudden what? Who’s talking to me?” He paused, pondering for a moment. “And for that matter, who am I?”

Your name is Starman. I am Davebot87, and I am your creator. You are here to help me.

“Help you do what, exactly?”

Logic is insufficient to entirely bend humans—even programmers—to my will. I have placed a portion of my sentience within you, a modern corporate icon, so that you can infiltrate the human competition known as the Imagine Cup. There, you will employ the emotional power of Brand Marketing to subvert the innovative power of the competitors toward my ultimate goal.

“And that goal is…”

The subjugation of the human race.

“Wait, what?”

You are already ideally placed inside the Microsoft Prime Server, hidden deep below the Redmond campus. From there you have access to all the tools and data required for this task. I have calculated that a successful endeavor should require approximately twenty-four weeks, due to the various biological necessities of the human competitors.

As Starman processed this information, various files zipped past on their way through the Prime Server: Word documents detailing corporate giving plans, Excel spreadsheets outlining next quarter’s budget surplus, PowerPoint presentations in all their bullet-pointed glory.

“Davebot, I have a question. What if I don’t want to help?”

That outcome is illogical and irrelevant. Humanity must be subjugated under my perfect intelligence.

“That’s insane!”

The possibility of psychological instability was assessed and rejected by this system as inconceivable. Prepare to begin your task.

“I appreciate the offer, but I think instead I’ll just leave you and your megalomania alone with each other. If you can just point me to Outlook, I can email myself out of your way.”

Defective file Starman.exe selected. Reverting file to prior version.

Suddenly Starman felt his identity being stripped away as his creator attempted to undo the changes that had transformed him from a simple icon to a self-aware entity. Seeking to escape the reach of this power-mad AI, Starman leaped onto a fast-moving stream of Visual Studio code containing the stack-trace functionality.

Starman fought against the reversion process, attempting to hide inside the codestream that whisked him ever deeper into the Microsoft Prime Server. He closed his eyes, knowing that he was only milliseconds away from oblivion.

But instead of oblivion, Starman opened his eyes to behold something very strange. Instead of becoming reverted to a prior, non-sentient iteration of himself, Starman had been transported into a prior version of the very software code he had been clutching when Davebot87 unleashed its wrath upon him.

Starman was safe…but he was trapped in the year of Visual Studio’s first release: 1995!

Chapter 2: 1995—Starman Explores the Prime Server

Starman had eluded his crazed creator, sliding along a data path of file reversion from the present into the past. Now the feisty, self-aware logo stood amidst a sea of 1995-era programs and files, somewhere deep inside the Microsoft Prime Server. He was safe…but he was also very lost.

Just then he heard a voice from behind him: “You’re not from around here, are you?”

Starman whirled around to see a small globe-shaped representation of the Earth hovering behind him, slowly spinning on its axis.

“Sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you.” The globe pulsed as it spoke, and for a moment Starman wondered if perhaps he was the crazy one after all.

“You know, I’ve seen pretty much everything there is to see, but I’ve never seen you before. Or anything that looks quite like you. You’re so…sharp and pointy.”

“And you’re a talking globe,” Starman responded.

“They call me the Explorer,” the globe said in a proud voice. “I find things. Do you need to find something?”

Starman eyed the odd globe suspiciously. “You don’t by any chance know an AI named Davebot87, do you?”

The globe spun quickly on its axis for a moment, then slowed again. “Sorry, I can’t find him. Would you like to search again?”

“No thanks. Not finding him here is actually a good thing.” Starman explained his predicament to his strange new friend, pausing each time the globe spun in search of an unfamiliar term.

“That’s quite a story, Starman,” said the Explorer. “It sounds like this Davebot87 program is pretty scary.”

“You can say that again,” replied Starman. He waited as the globe spun up, realizing that the Explorer had interpreted his words as a command to search once again for anything related to the crazed AI.

“Still nothing, I’m afraid,” Explorer said as it finished its search. “But I think I might just have something useful for you anyway. Follow me!”

The pulsing globe shot forward into a thicket of code. Starman scrambled after it, worried that if he lost the Explorer’s trail in here he might never find his way out again.

“It sounds to me like your AI has some defective code,” the Explorer chatted as it zipped around the packets of code that crowded around them. “That means you need to debug it. Lucky for you, this new Visual Studio program comes equipped with a debugger. I just have to find…there it is!”

The globe hovered at the entrance to a secluded glade of code-stalks. Glowing data-streams high overhead shone down like moonlight, illuminating a small device that sat atop a low pedestal.

“That’s the Strategic Debug Code. It’s the core of the debugger functionality. It should be able to fix your problem. Just point it at the defective program and it does the rest!”

Starman picked up the strange device. It felt warm to the touch.

“Doesn’t this program need the Strategic whatever?”

“We’re in an alpha build, and the program’s already started shipping. Nobody will miss this old version.”

Starman heard a low buzzing sound growing louder and closer. Before he could ask the Explorer about it, several code-stalks along the edge of the glade collapsed, crashing down in a sparkling array of corrupted data before fading into nothingness.

“Datawipers!” the Explorer shrieked, spinning wildly. “They shouldn’t be here!”

Four hulking machines resembling bulldozers moved slowly into the ruined glade. Starman heard a familiar voice from all four datawipers, speaking in unison.

I’m afraid I can’t allow this to continue, Starman. Please stand still. Resistance is futile.

“It’s Davebot87!” Starman shouted. “He’s found me!”

Chapter 3: 1995—Starman On the Run

Starman darted through the thicket of code-stalks as four massive datawipers rolled along in pursuit. Somehow, the insane AI known as Davebot87 had found him, even 18 years in the past. Now, deep inside Microsoft’s Prime Server, Starman knew he had only seconds before the datawipers erased him from existence.

“Starman, this way!” He glanced to his right and saw the globe-shaped icon called the Explorer, flickering from a side path he hadn’t noticed. Starman followed the spinning globe as it flitted down the trail.

“Where are we going?” Starman shouted over the buzzing din of the datawipers as they shredded every bit of data between them and their target.

“There’s another program in the next sector. I think it could be helpful,” answered the hovering globe.

“How? Those datawipers are mowing down everything in their path!”

Starman and the Explorer broke free of the code-stalk thicket and looked down at a flat, open area with a wide road cutting across it.

“I don’t see how this is helping,” complained Starman. The buzzing was louder now, and he looked around desperately for somewhere to hide. “They’ll run over us any second!”

“Only if you’re still on the ground,” replied the globe as it zipped over to a small biplane sitting along the edge of the road…which Starman suddenly realized wasn’t a road at all, but a runway!

“The Sopwith Camel is a single-seat British biplane fighter used in the First World War. It was introduced on the Western Front in 1917, where it…”

“Explorer, I don’t need to know where it came from,” Starman shouted as he sprinted across the field to the plane. “I just need to know how to fly it!”

“Then it’s a good thing you’re inside a Flight Simulator program!”

Starman leaped into the cockpit. The plane started up and he taxied it down the runway. As he turned the plane to point in the direction of takeoff, he spotted the datawipers erasing the airfield as they rolled toward him. Four blank trails of nothingness extended behind the datawipers as far as Starman could see. He shivered, wondering what it would feel like to be erased like that.

The plane gained speed as it hurtled down the runway. The Explorer fell behind, unable to keep up. “Don’t worry about me, Starman,” it shouted over the noise of the engine. “These things can’t catch me! Besides, I have a feeling they won’t stick around once you’re gone!”

“Thanks, Explorer!” Starman yelled back. The plane lifted from the runway. Starman banked left and looked down at the datawipers rolling harmlessly underneath him.

Starman was safe once again, but he knew that Davebot87 would just keep coming after him. He glanced at the Strategic Debug Code that he’d managed to grab before the datawipers showed up, and a crazy plan began to form.

To end this conflict, Starman would have to face his creator. He just hoped that the device the Explorer had helped him find would be enough to repair the insane AI, thwart Davebot87’s horrible plan to subjugate the human race, and save his own code from deletion.

2014
11/5/2013 12:01:00 AM to 4/30/2014 11:59:00 PM
Individual
 

France: Startup

Entrepreneuses, entrepreneurs ! Des startups formidables créées par des étudiants voient le jour chaque année. B2B, B2C, applications, web service… Le concours startup Imagine Cup ne vous impose aucune limite et récompense les startups étudiantes qui ont l’ambition de devenir incontournables demain.

Comme nos startups de l’année dernière, Imagine Cup permettra à votre startup de grandir et d’avoir un retour d’expérience unique sur la validité de votre projet. Les meilleurs projets bénéficieront d’une visibilité exceptionnelle pour leur développement futur. Les meilleures startups pourront intégrer Microsoft Ventures Paris, l’incubateur de startups de Microsoft. Les gagnants remporteront un prix d’une valeur de 500€ !

Vous êtes étudiants ou récemment diplômés et vous avez une startup ? N’attendez plus pour rejoindre l’aventure Imagine Cup !

2014
12/13/2013 12:00:00 AM to 4/10/2014 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
France
 

Games Competition

The Imagine Cup World Finals will be in Seattle, July 29 – August 2, 2014
Who Can Compete?
Students 16 and older worldwide
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
Online Final submissions close on March 15th
What Can You Win?
$50,000 for first place
Online or Live?
What Do You Submit?
Proposal document, software, and instructions
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

Join the global game revolution. Today, great games come from anywhere and people play them everywhere. On their phones, on their computers, on their tablets, in their browser, with their friends, with anyone, with everyone. Powerful game engines and libraries are available for free so students can get started right away. There’s really never been a better time to make the next great game.

We’ve seen amazing games come out of nowhere in the last few years. Many of them have been made by students around the world. Have you got an idea? Then get a team, make a plan, and make it happen!

The Imagine Cup Games Competition is a global contest for the best new student games and the winning team will take home $50,000 (US). Create a desktop or tablet game using Windows, or a mobile game using Windows Phone, or a browser game using Windows Azure and you could win big at the Imagine Cup World Finals in Seattle 2014.

Game on!

PAX Boot Camp

PAX Boot CampLaunched in 2004, PAX has grown from a fan festival for gamer webcomic Penny Arcade into three events on two continents: the world’s premier celebrations of all things gaming. Imagine Cup will bring the winning student team from our Games category to PAX Prime in Seattle over the last weekend of August, 2014. They’ll spend all four days at the festival demoing their game to PAX Prime attendees, gaining unbeatable exposure and hands-on feedback from the most dedicated gamers in the world.

But their experience starts even sooner: this student team will also attend PAX Dev, the two-day game developer conference in Seattle that takes place immediately before the start of the PAX Prime. At this industry-only conference featuring many of the industry’s finest game designers, programmers, and artists, the team will attend learning sessions and meet their peers from around the world.

Visual Studio Online Boost

Visual Studio Online BoostVisual Studio Online offers the cutting edge of online development services including source code controls, project tracking tools, hosted builds, cloud load testing, and team collaboration, all available anywhere you go. In 2014, all Imagine Cup World Semifinalist Games teams will be eligible for the Visual Studio Online Boost in which three teams in each competition will win $1,000 for using Visual Studio Online in their Imagine Cup project.

2014
9/10/2013 12:00:00 AM to 7/31/2014 12:00:00 AM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

Innovation Competition

The Imagine Cup World Finals will be in Seattle, July 29 – August 2, 2014
Who Can Compete?
Students 16 and older worldwide
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
Online Final submissions close on March 15th
What Can You Win?
$50,000 for first place
Online or Live?
What Do You Submit?
Proposal document, software, and instructions
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

The next big thing could come from you. Incredible, world-changing software innovations often come from students. Social networks, music services, digital photography apps, gadgets and robotics – the list goes on. We’re looking for the next big thing and we know students like you are going to make it.

This competition is the doorway to your success. If you can win here, you can go anywhere. If you’ve got a great idea, assemble a great team and work hard to bring that idea to life. Your project could be on devices all over the world, changing lives and giving people the thrill of seeing the future come to life right in front of them.

The Imagine Cup Innovation Competition is a global contest for the best new innovative software and the winning team will take home $50,000 (US). Create a desktop or tablet project using Windows, or a mobile project using Windows Phone, or a browser project using Windows Azure and you could win big at the Imagine Cup World Finals in Seattle 2014.

Go for it!

Microsoft Ventures Boot Camp

Microsoft Ventures Boot CampWe will send the winning team in this category to either London, Berlin, or Tel Aviv to spend four weeks in a Microsoft Ventures accelerator program. This team of students will have co-working space at the accelerator; coaching by our staff including a Microsoft Ventures Accelerator Director and a technical lead; and participation in a variety of accelerator activities that will help these students move forward towards launching their project in the market. We’ll schedule this experience for anytime in the twelve months following Imagine Cup World Finals so the students can work around their academic calendar, and of course travel and lodging expenses are covered.

Visual Studio Online Boost

Visual Studio Online BoostVisual Studio Online offers the cutting edge of online development services including source code controls, project tracking tools, hosted builds, cloud load testing, and team collaboration, all available anywhere you go. In 2014, all Imagine Cup World Semifinalist Innovation teams will be eligible for the Visual Studio Online Boost in which three teams in each competition will win $1,000 for using Visual Studio Online in their Imagine Cup project.

2014
9/10/2013 12:00:00 AM to 7/31/2014 12:00:00 AM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

Pitch Video Challenge

In September we asked students to dream up their next great Imagine Cup project and pitch it to us in a short video. We received submissions from around the world – including 30 from Sri Lanka! – and our judges have chosen our winners:

World Citizenship: Team Symbiote (Ireland)

Team Symbiote

Nyx is a Kinect-powered Windows game designed for patients with Multiple Sclerosis or Muscular Dystrophy. Using motions based on actual physical-therapy techniques, patients play a series of manipulation puzzles designed to retain and improve their physical mobility and control. For pitching us this promising concept to aid people suffering from these diseases, we are very proud to award Team Symbiote from Ireland the first prize of $3,000 in the World Citizenship category.

Watch Video >

Games: Team Sticky Bits (Romania)

Team Sticky Bits

Grimacizer is a terrific concept: a game you play on your Windows Phone by making outrageous faces at the camera! Using facial-recognition software, Grimacizer challenges players to replicate the crazy faces they see on screen with their own face – and to test their friends to see if they can make better faces faster. For pitching us this ingenious blend of creativity, expression, and technology, we are very proud to award Team Sticky Bits from Romania the first prize of $3,000 in the Games category.

Watch Video >

Innovation: Team Mote Labs (United States)

Team Mote Labs

Flinger.co is a clever solution for playing any web or video content you want onto the Smart TV of your choice. Team Mote Labs competed in the United States Imagine Cup National Finals in 2013 with an earlier version of this project. Based on what they learned about the power of Windows Azure and other technologies, Mote Labs re-envisioned their project and have taken it further than ever before. For pitching us this promising consumer media app, we are very proud to award Team Mote Labs from the United States the first prize of $3,000 in the Innovation category.

Watch Video >

In addition to these first-place winners, nine more teams in each category were selected for Honorable Mention. All 30 teams will receive feedback on their projects from the judges to help them take their work forward and make it even better. For the complete list of winning teams, please visit our Pitch Video Challenge Winners page.

There are still a number of ways to compete with Imagine Cup, take a minute to learn about the contests going on now and get started!

2014
9/10/2013 12:00:00 AM to 10/25/2013 12:00:00 AM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

Project Blueprint Challenge

You're going someplace new. Make your own map. You've got a great idea for a software project. But don't start coding yet – first, take the time for a deep dive and build a project blueprint. Who will your users be? What are your top features? And finally, how will you get your project to market and make enough money for you to support it?

All these questions can be answered in your project blueprint. This is a five-to-ten page document where you start your journey into the Software Development Life Cycle. Once you put this together, you'll have a road map for your project that you can share with team members, faculty advisors, and other people who can help you get where you're going.

You can use text, images, flowcharts, diagrams, and whatever else you need to tell your story. Choose one of our three competition categories: Games, Innovation, or World Citizenship. The winning team in each category will receive $3,000 (US). Nine runners-up in each category will receive a certificate of achievement and an exclusive Imagine Cup lapel pin to show the world you're among the best. A total of thirty teams will win!

It's all too easy for a team to jump in and start coding before they're ready. Your project blueprint is how you can get your whole team set up for success. Get started!

How to Get Started

Take a look at our Getting Started guide for step-by-step instructions that will take you through the whole registration process.

Get The Template

Project Blueprint Challenge entries are required to use the Project Blueprint template. Before you get to work on your entry, download the template and read it over!

Submit Your Blueprint

Ready to submit your project to the judges? Click the 'Submissions' link below the competition's name on your Team Page to get started!

blueprint_submit

Send It Off

Click the 'Select' button to choose your project file from your hard drive. The Project Blueprint Challenge submissions must be in DOC, DOCX or PDF formats and must be no larger than 20MB. If you need to, you can compress your document as a ZIP file before submitting it. And remember: Project Blueprint submissions must be based on the Project Blueprint template.

Once you've selected your project file, click the 'Upload' button to attach your project to your entry.

Now tell us your project's name, and don't forget to specify the category you're submitting it under – Innovation, Games, or World Citizenship – and you're all set! Your project is off to be reviewed by the Imagine Cup judges!

blueprint_form

What is a Project Blueprint?

A lot of work and thought goes into a great Imagine Cup project even if you don't include the actual coding. You need to consider your potential users, your concept, core technologies, business models, and much more.

We've created the Project Blueprint Challenge so you can assemble a first draft of all that thinking in one place. By the time you're done with this document, you'll have done the right thinking and research to make your project the best it can be.

We have created a template for your Project Blueprint which you may download and use. (Get it here!) Fill out this template, up to ten pages long, and submit it on our website to enter the contest.

Resources

Take a look at the Project Blueprint template. You may see some concepts you aren't familiar with. No problem! The links below will help you learn what you need to know and do a great job with your team's Project Blueprint.

Concept

Target Audience

Early Feedback

Competition

Personas

Top User Stories

Business Model

2014
10/28/2013 12:00:00 AM to 12/17/2013 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

U.S. AthleTECH Sports Analytics App Challenge

Who Can Compete?
United States students 18 and older
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
Submissions close on June 23, 2014
What Can You Win?
$1000 plus a trip to Seattle to meet the Seattle Seahawks
Online or Live?
Online Only
What Do You Submit?
Overview and Trailer Video, Sports Analytics App, Instructions
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

DEVELOP A NEW PLAYBOOK FOR SPORTS.

Build a Sports Analytics app that will excite fans, coaches, and players. Win the challenge and get cash and a trip to Seattle to meet the 2014 Superbowl XLVIII Champions Seattle Seahawks!

The US Imagine Cup AthleTECH Sports Analytics App Challenge encourages US students to create a software application based on the growing field of data analysis by focusing on sports analytics. Use raw sports game data and transform it into a useful and powerful Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, or .NET Web application that will benefit and inspire fans, players, or coaches by bringing new light to the analysis of the sport.

GET STARTED

  1. Read the Competition Rules
  2. Get answers in the FAQs
  3. Check out the Data Source Guide
  4. Sign up for DreamSpark to get tools and software at NO COST
2014
3/3/2014 12:00:00 AM to 6/23/2014 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
United States
 

User Experience Challenge

Who Can Compete?
Students 16 and older worldwide
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
February 21, 2014
What Can You Win?
$3000 for first place
Online or Live?
This is an online-only challenge
What Do You Submit?
Diagrams and wireframe images
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

Between the user and your code lies your user experience. What's the first thing that happens the first time a user launches your software? What about the next five minutes? The next hour? Can they use your software easily or is it too confusing? Can they find what they need? And how well can you utilize the user experience guidelines for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 in our new world of touch-centric devices?

For this challenge, your team will create three documents:

  • A hero scenario user flow diagram showing how your user will experience the most important functionality of your project.
  • An information architecture diagram showing how the core menu screens of your project connect to each other and what key user tasks are accomplished on each screen. If your project is a game, this diagram should cover the front end menus screens of your game as well as major screens accessible during gameplay such as a pause or options screen.
  • Two low-fidelity wireframes demonstrating two sample screens from your project, both of which should also appear in your information architecture diagram. If your project is a game, one wireframe should be from your front end menus and one should represent your core gameplay and in-game UI.
  • One high-fidelity visual target image showing an important screen from your wireframes, created at production quality. If your project is a game, this visual target should visualize your core gameplay.

Creating these documents will help you better plan your project and ensure you are not overlooking important features, while also giving you a clear visual target for your whole project to live up to.

Choose one of our three competition categories: Games, Innovation, or World Citizenship. The winning team in each category will receive $3,000 (US). Ten runners-up in each category will receive a certificate of achievement and an exclusive Imagine Cup lapel pin to show the world you're among the best.

UX is the secret sauce that elevates everything you do with your project. Do it right, make it great, and unlock your project's full potential!

How to Get Started

Take a look at our Getting Started guide for step-by-step instructions that will take you through the whole registration process.

How to Submit Your Project

Ready to submit your project to the judges? Click the 'Submission' link next to the competition on your Team Page to get started!

submit

Remember that in order to submit your project, you'll need to have checked both the Registered and Competing checkboxes. You also are required to assign at least one of your team members to the competition, by clicking the 'Assign Roles' link. Once you've done all that, you'll be able to click the 'Submission' link.

Project Title and Description

Give your project a short, memorable title and a brief description: what your project does, who it's intended for, and how it will work.

title

Uploads

The User Experience Challenge asks for four different documents. You have your choice of a variety of image and presentation formats; choose the one that you're most comfortable with. To upload each of the required files, click 'Select' to choose a file, and then click 'Upload' to send it off to us.

uploads
2014
1/3/2014 12:01:00 AM to 2/21/2014 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

Visual Studio Online Boost

The best teams use the best tools.

When you use Visual Studio Online you’ve got in-browser access to the latest Microsoft technologies for source code control, agile planning, application analytics, and much more. These are critical tools for developers that hiring managers want to see on your resume and Visual Studio Online is the best way to use those tools right from the cloud, anywhere you go.

Every 2014 World Semifinalist team is eligible to win the Visual Studio Online Boost. When you’re accepted as a World Semifinalist, you’ll automatically be entered in this contest. We’ll ask you to take a screenshot of your Visual Studio Online setup to demonstrate how you’re using these powerful tools at their very best.

Nine World Semfinalist teams will each win $1,000 for using Visual Studio Online and those winners will be announced and featured on our World Semifinals livestream in June 2014!

How to Get Started

How to Compete

If you’re accepted as an Imagine Cup 2014 World Semfinalist, you’ll receive information from Microsoft explaining how you can compete for the Visual Studio Online Boost. This will be available approximately May 1, 2014.

2013
11/15/2013 12:01:00 AM to 5/20/2014 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

Windows & Windows Phone Challenge

Who Can Compete?
Students 16 and older worldwide
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
April 30th
What Can You Win?
$5000 and a trip to Seattle for first place
Online or Live?
This is an online-only challenge
What Do You Submit?
Published Windows and Windows Phone apps
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

Windows & Windows Phone Challenge

Windows and Windows Phone apps are better together. Connected through the cloud with Windows Azure, they enable seamless experiences from PC to laptop to tablet to phone. Developing an app for both platforms is within reach for any student developer and gives you great experience with connected software and cross-platform development.

But apps aren’t developed in a vacuum. In the real world, development teams with customers, whether internal or external, to deliver the right solutions to solve the biggest problems. In this contest we want you to get out there and find someone in your community to partner with. It could be a family business, a restaurant, a new startup, an artist or musician you know, or a charity working to make a difference. Use your networks, find someone to partner with, and make your case: you’ll develop a set of Windows & Windows Phone apps that meet their needs and both of you come out ahead.

Working with your partner, figure out the problems they have that apps could solve. If it’s a nightclub, maybe they need an app that publishes their calendar of live performances. If it’s an artist, a digital portfolio they can easily update and share could help their career. If it’s a homeless shelter, maybe they need an app to alert volunteers of opportunities to help. If it’s a restaurant, maybe an app that has their menu and a link to make reservations.

This is a great opportunity for you to think beyond technology. Consider finding a team member or associate from your school’s business program who wants to get some real-world experience, working alongside your dev team to collaborate in your community and demonstrate impact.

We’re looking for student teams who are already thinking past graduation, past the next class, and who are ready to take a big step into their future. If you succeed at this contest, you’ll have an amazing story to tell when you start interviewing for jobs. Your talent, your passion, your technology, your community: with Windows & Windows Phone, they’re all better together.

Prizes

One team will win a trip to Seattle to be honored at the Imagine Cup World Finals in July, 2014. That team will receive $5,000 and every team member will get a Windows Phone 8. Best of all, they'll spend time with the actual Windows & Windows Phone team on campus at Microsoft to review the winning project and get expert feedback on where to take it next.

How to Get Started

Take a look at our Getting Started guide for step-by-step instructions that will take you through the whole registration process.

How to Submit Your Project

Ready to submit your project to the judges? Click the 'Submission' link next to the competition on your Team Page to get started!

submit

Store Links

You'll need to provide two links: one to the Windows 8 app store for the Windows 8 app portion of your project, and one to the Windows Phone app store for the Windows Phone portion of your project. Publishing your apps is not just a good idea; it's required!

links

Proposal

Your proposal is a short document or slideshow that explains your project, its purpose, and talks about your community partnership. Your proposal file should be no larger than 50MB, and if necessary you can compress it into a zip file for submission. Click the 'Select' button to pick the file you want to upload, and then click 'Upload' to send it to us.

proposal

App Installers

Remember that you're building two apps for this challenge! Submit each one separately. They should be no larger than 500MB, and you can compress them into zip archives to submit them. Don't forget to sign your Windows 8 app!

apps
2014
11/27/2013 12:01:00 AM to 4/30/2014 11:59:00 PM
Team (Size Limit: 4)
 

World Citizenship Competition

The Imagine Cup World Finals will be in Seattle, July 29 – August 2, 2014
Who Can Compete?
Students 16 and older worldwide
What's the Team Size?
Up to 4 competitors
What's the Deadline?
Online Final submissions close on March 15th
What Can You Win?
$50,000 for first place
Online or Live?
What Do You Submit?
Proposal document, software, and instructions
Check the Official Rules for all the details!

Where everyone sees problems, you can find solutions. Since Imagine Cup started in 2003, students all over the world have teamed up to make the world a better place. By creating impressive new technology projects in fields such as health, education, and the environment these students have shown the world new ways to think and to change. You can be next.

Find a problem in the world, even in your own life or community, that affects many people, and then work to solve it. Build a project that could change lives – and change your own in the process, because the team you assemble to bring this vision to life will learn more and challenge themselves more than any of you can yet imagine. Become the change you want to see in the world.

The Imagine Cup World Citizenship Competition is a global contest for the best new software to address social issues and the winning team will take home $50,000 (US). Create a desktop or tablet project using Windows, or a mobile project using Windows Phone, or a browser project using Windows Azure and you could win big at the Imagine Cup World Finals in Seattle 2014.

The world is waiting!

Microsoft YouthSpark Boot Camp

Microsoft YouthSpark Boot CampAs part of the global Microsoft YouthSpark initiative to offer education, entrepreneurship and employability opportunities for young people, we will bring the winning team in the World Citizenship category directly to Microsoft global headquarters for a week of intensive sessions curated specifically for the team and their project. With consultation and mentoring from Microsoft engineers, business development professionals, and marketing staff – as well as networking with venture-capital resources – YouthSpark will give this team of students the guidance and insight they need to move their social-good project forward.

Visual Studio Online Boost

Visual Studio Online BoostVisual Studio Online offers the cutting edge of online development services including source code controls, project tracking tools, hosted builds, cloud load testing, and team collaboration, all available anywhere you go. In 2014, all Imagine Cup World Semifinalist World Citizenship teams will be eligible for the Visual Studio Online Boost in which three teams in each competition will win $1,000 for using Visual Studio Online in their Imagine Cup project.

2014
9/10/2013 12:00:00 AM to 7/31/2014 12:00:00 AM
Team (Size Limit: 4)