Sydney-based events company, Forest Events, contacted GPS Create with the idea of combining a GPS activity with a team building event as part of a sales and marketing conference for Nokia, South East Asia Pacific.

GPS Create proposed the creation of a large GPS drawing created by 11 teams of ten people each. The combination of the individual team drawings would reveal a larger group picture reinforcing various Nokia themes such as ‘innovation’ and ‘achieving together’. Options for viewing the results included animated drawings during the day’s presentations, a screensaver for the Nokia staff involved, or a large-format poster for the office foyer.

The end solution used our GPS Sketch software to combine innovative technology and the more traditional team-building exercise of sailing.

Unbeknownst to the participants, we used GPS devices to track the movements of the 10 boats, each with a crew of around 10 people and one skipper. Once the boats returned to berth, the GPS devices were collected and the data was uploaded and entered into the GPS Sketch program within 20 minutes.

When participants returned to the conference space, the animation of their sailing activity was played, much to their surprise. The animation was used by Skipper, Julian Bowker, as a tool to debrief what happened on the water and where teams did, and didn’t, work well together.


The sketch begins with crew training, which appears rather like silly string. Then it’s on to the race around the buoys. Watch out for the furious tacking and when the boats break into a ‘man overboard’ scenario towards the end.

The animation replays as a factor of time so you can see rhythm in the movement. Change the speed by adjusting the "Playback speed" slider.

Thank you to Forest Events and East Sail.

“The client (Nokia) was blown away – I had a de-brief with them and they just LOVED it!!!!

Thank you so much for sharing with us your talent, creativity and easy going natures.”

“I was certainly impressed with the ease, efficiency and speed the GPS data was collected and uploaded.

The final result really made the event alive again as the participants relived their afternoon on the water. It was amazing to see a room full of more than 100 people glued to the screen as they re-traced their path around the harbour and saw their own track unfold relative to other competitors. The ability to speed up and slow down the replay helped make the de-brief more interesting and easier for me to deliver. Fantastic job all round!”