About 500 guests showed up at the AppHaus Heidelberg and the SAP Design & Co-Innovation Center (DCC) following the open house invitation last weekend. On Friday, September 25, the AppHaus was only open for SAP employees, while its doors were open to the wider public on Saturday, September 26. Anyone who wanted to learn about the SAP’s work was welcome between 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. As Heidelberg’s Fall festival was on the same day, many people took advantage of this and came to visit the AppHaus and experience its creative atmosphere. This resulted in about 200 visitors more than last year.

Diverse activities for people of all ages had been prepared for this event. Every half hour guests could take a guided tour through the space, a former tobacco factory, and learn how the AppHaus Heidelberg was created. SAP employees explained the visitors when the AppHaus was built, which projects it is home to, and the benefits such a creative setting brings.

The circuit with activities attracted a lot of interest. Inside the AppHaus, different stations had been prepared in the workshop area at which visitors could take on different challenges that showed them how to think like a designer. They had to complete at least four different stations in order to receive a designer certificate at the end of their visit. At the storytelling station the visitors had to make up stories using story cubes. At the sketching station, both children and adults could draw the city of the future on the walls – the walls are coated in idea paint, so the drawings can be wiped off and done again quite easily! There was also a stand informing visitors about the different social projects supported by SAP CSR. These include the Cleverlinge2: A one-on-one mentoring program between SAP employees and children at the Emmertsgrund primary school in Heidelberg.

One of the activities the visitors enjoyed the most was the spaghetti and marshmallow challenge. The objective of this station was to build the highest possible freestanding tower out of twenty spaghetti noodles, one marshmallow, tape, and some string. But there was one condition: The marshmallow must be at the very top of the tower!

Spaghetti
 

 

 

Yet another station offered first insights on how to build prototypes. The SAP d-shop presented their banana piano and a pair of 3D virtual reality glasses for this category, which the visitors loved. The banana piano is a USB keyboard that perceives a person as a switch. Once there’s a circuit set up with the cables connected to the PC, the visitors could sound different notes just by touching the bananas. The virtual reality glasses presented by SAP employee Christian Heller allowed visitors to take a short trip to a villa in Tuscany. They could walk through the virtual reality villa simply by moving their head or pressing the arrows on the laptop.

The FIRST® LEGO® League stand was also a prototype station. This is a program supported by SAP that offers young people the opportunity to learn more about science and technology by participating in a robot competition. At the stand, visitors could build their own robot prototypes.

Young and old visitors all enjoyed greatly the AppHaus open house day. There were many interesting conversations over free food and drinks, and if anyone had questions, they could ask a DCC employee at any time. Many of the visitors inscribed their names on the visitors’ wall or wrote a feedback letter for the team. Many visitors wished they could work at the AppHaus, while others praised DCC’s creative and innovative design approach to finding solutions for their customers. “I’m very impressed,” one surprised visitor said. “I always thought SAP was just a software company. I had no idea their work is so creative and they bring their projects so close to the end users.”

Bananas

After these two exciting days of showing visitors how SAP is bringing end users and technology in a creative space, and how much the AppHaus Heidelberg has to offer, we are already looking forward to next year’s open house.

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