What is Apple's Scholarship and why it’s more than just a WWDC ticket
The WWDC ticket costs $ 1600, and to get it, you need to participate in the lottery. For students from all over the world, Apple organizes a contest every year in which you can win a free ticket to the conference and get other nice bonuses. This year I was lucky to win the Scholarship . I attended the conference, now I am ready to share my impressions and tell you how my WWDC ticket was different from the usual.
How to participate in the contest Apple
To apply for an Apple scholarship, you must be a student or a member of a STEM organization (for example, code.org). You need to fill out a simple form, attach a scan of the document confirming what you are learning, and add a project made in the Playground environment.
There is no specific topic for the competition project, it could be anything: a game, a training tutorial, or a story about yourself. When Apple announced the competition, it was 2 weeks before the deadline. This is not enough if you want to make something outstanding. I heard that some guys started to do their projects earlier according to past experience. I started to make my project at the last moment, and it is simple. I chose a topic for a long time and decided to show the beauty of the fractals of the Julia set, which are drawn using Metal technology. I added animation and music. Depending on the position of the cursor on the screen, you can change the appearance of the fractal.
I did not expect to win, but the cherished letter arrived on April 20:
When the winners were announced, there was not much time left before the conference. If you need to get an American visa, this is very small, and you can not pull. On the official website of the US Embassy, you can see the time to the next interview. It is indicated for residents of the country, and for non-residents a separate queue. I wanted to get a visa in the Baltic States, but there were too late dates or the interview for non-residents was closed. I was lucky and I got a visa in Ukraine. The process was very exciting, because I did everything myself. I do not advise you to repeat my experience, it is better to take a consultation with a visa specialist, then the chance to make a mistake is much less.
Where do skolarshipers live during a conference?
In addition to the conference ticket, Apple donated a year to the Apple Developer Program and provided accommodation for the duration of the conference. Those who could not come, Apple sent gifts by mail.
Skolarshipers live in student dormitories with double rooms. Neighbor of the same sex with you. All the amenities on the floor, there was never a queue. Everywhere entrance cards, the elevator can only go to your floor. The main thing is not to forget the card in the room. We arrived two days before the beginning of the conference and immediately met a crowd of other skolarpers near the hostel. All of them can be useful contacts in the future. Every year Apple expands the number of countries participating in the program. Programming friends from different countries are not superfluous.
Promofoto from the hostel site, since I did not rent a room (housing.sjsu.edu).
We lived in the building on the left. Thanks for the photo of Omar Al-Ejel.
How was the zero day of the conference
Zero day is only for skolarshiper. It is organized specifically to support young professionals and motivate Apple to continue hard work and dedication. This year the skolarshipers were in for a surprise, it was written about this in the letter, and we were intrigued.
In the morning we went to get the badges. The queue was infinitely long, but Apple employees constantly encouraged us and entertained us, as on all other days. Then we were taken to the McEnery Convention Center, where we were able to meet Tim Cook.
In addition to the badge, all participants of the conference were given a Levi's jacket with the initial set of WWDC badges of this year. The rest of the icons could be obtained for showing activity at the conference. In chat rooms dedicated to WWDC, there were often flashes of messages with offers of exchange, someone even decided to do an icon exchange application.
In the forefront are skolarshipery. Apple employees are endlessly making waves out of hand.
Everything is quick and easy. You show your passport and scan a ticket from Wallet.
An hour later, the skolarshipers were put on buses and taken to a “secret place”. Staf Apple repeated: "NO FOTO, NO VIDEO, NO AUDIO". We suspected that we were going to Apple Park, and were right.
On the territory of Apple Park we were fed in a futuristic cafe, divided into groups and taken to the theater Steve Jobs. We had another 30 minutes to pofot while the other groups were pulling up. I really liked the architecture of the theater, everything was done neatly and technologically, dominated by stone, glass and aluminum.
Then we had a special presentation. They told about educational applications, about the importance of privacy, localization, functions of universal access. Apple bragged about the environmental friendliness of its production and spoke about the new robot Daisy, which can disassemble most of the iPhone models. Last year, Apple showed a Leam robot, which only parses the iPhone 6. At the end of the presentation, Tim Cook came out, wished us luck and said not to ask questions, because he would not answer them anyway.
When the presentation ended, we were invited to take a general photo. Scolariers surrounded Tim to take a selfie with him, and Apple employees built a living escape route for him. They asked me not to crowd, but no one listened, and I was nearly taken off my feet. Some people made funny shots.
Funny photo of Denis. Sorry.
Next on the program for more than an hour, we could chat with Apple engineers in the lobby of the Steve Jobs theater or go to the Apple Park Visitor Center. At the exit from the territory of Apple Park, the AirPods were presented to all skolarshiper. I expected that Apple TV will give us the same as last year, but I was pleased with the new headphones.
The track on the territory of Apple Park.
How we spent the days of the conference
Some participants lined up at night to take a good spot in the Keynote viewing room. We didn’t need this, because there were places allocated for skolarshiperov. Not to say that good, but come down. All the best places in the middle are the press, and only they have sockets. This is such a small discrimination.
Everyone sits down in front of Keynote.
Every day there was a free breakfast and lunch for all participants, and in the intervals between sessions it was almost always possible to have a snack. Queuing was awesome, everything went very quickly, and no one crowded.
Lunch in the open air.
On the second day labs started. I think this is the most interesting place on the WWDC. Labs are available to all conference participants, someone even goes to WWDC just for their sake. Some labs can be reached in the order of a live queue, others need to be recorded early in the morning, and the recording period is just 30 minutes.
Even if you did not prepare the questions, you need to come up with them on the spot. Engineers can always tell a lot of useful information. In separate rooms, labs related to the review in the App Store and design were carried out. I was pleasantly surprised that Apple employees genuinely want to help everyone.
Apps for the World Get-Together is a separate event where you can get to know Apple developers or employees from China, India, Southeast Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, Russia, Turkey and Africa. There you can learn more about the cultures of these countries, market features, design. All are divided into groups by country, so I met with two Russian-speaking employees of Apple.
Every evening for all participants of WWDC, there were Parties - special events from different organizations. It could be regular conferences or parties in bars with live music, free and paid. Almost everything needs to register in advance. At Parties, you can chat with interesting people in an informal setting and collect all sorts of bonuses: T-shirts, stickers, badges. Find all parties / conferences in the “ WWDC Parties ” mobile app . On the penultimate day, Apple held an event. Bash is a concert with free drinks, food and games.
Should I participate in the contest Apple
WWDC is one of the best events for developers because it inspires. Nowhere will you find such a concentration of interesting people willing to share knowledge and best practices. I am grateful to Apple for the opportunity to attend the conference for free and MobileUp for supporting me.
I recommend all students to try their luck in this lottery. Doing something on the Playground is easy. The platform was created, primarily for learning programming. Everyone has chances.
All the days of the conference I led a channel in Telegram , where I shared my impressions of the trip. If you are interested to know more details, come on.