I took a look at the events which can be found here and here. To my astonishment it is a paid coding event which the currency operated at united state dollar even though we are in Malaysia. As this is something that I have never done before, that is, go to physical location and start to code for a project to compete against each other is one of my decisive factors and of cause, to know who are in the local development community, get to know more developers as well as have some fun!
There are mainly three challenges this year which are
* big data analytics
* o2o commerce
* smart living
and a grand prize which is an exclusive invite to a hackcelerator program and a chance to fly to silicon valley to compete further! Of cause, each categories come with prize pool!
Having practical background in big data technology and startup before, the professor think by inviting could form a team of five to compete on the big data analytics category. With that, I just give it a try and see how it goes. This event held on 4 and 5th June 2016 and of cause, on the weekend where just fit nicely with working professional schedule.
For my part, I have bring in big data technology and this time I selected elasticsearch as the nosql keystore which match with the challenge category we are aiming for. It was an unfortunate that since much of my time have been devoted to mid and backend development, my user interface development skill has been reduced tremendously. (Note to self, start to code GUI back!) But fortunately, to fix that gap, there was a good combination of software that came with elasticsearch, which is known as kibana fix what I have not bring to the table. Combination elasticsearch and kibana, we are not able to ingest the 65m of iproperty data into the machine, we are able to query and represent it nicely in colour graphs form.
As for the remaining of the team, which bring in skillsets like deep learning and predictive analysis which these two skillsets answer on 'predictive' and 'prescriptive' part. The idea of our product is that, user able to upload a picture of a property through a web interface (through a phone camera) and the system will learn that image and output the result using iproperty dataset that was store in elasticsearch and display in another page.
Below are some interesting pictures taken during the events.
and the developers
As you can see from the above pictures, there are plenty of coders! Each skillful at what they are good at. There are estimated around 370 participants and that's including female coders too! Overall I think the organizer done really good job for this two days events. The participants actually got power, cool air, water, food, network devices and cable, junk food, tshirt, cup, writing notebook and the staffs are very helpful.
One of them actually came to me and asking what do I like, and actually handed me a paper cup with coffee as I requested. I could not express more gratitude since I got there around 8am and that's early for weekend. ;-) But I would like to point out there are definite areas to improve for next year.
* warm air on day one, it was not continuous but you feel the warm air.
* some of the schedule planned (the judging and present) written in paper is way too far off from the actual events flow.
* power and internet connection drop from time to time for two days.
* less junk food and perhaps replaced with fruits.
* the table arrangement too small for computer devices as well as personal comfortable.
But all in all, a good job to complete this two days event in a safe and sounds manner. If you know me, and the moto of this website striving for contribution and mutual benefits, I found out that there are still some and if not many of the developers who are very selfish in term of code sharing and/or code learning. For instance, all my codes and infrastructure are available online which can be found here.But in return, there are many excuses of them not share in between and something really go against my principle. I know that event such as this is compete against other team, I think what's more valuable above all these monetary values is the innovation and to cultivate coding passion. Something still I do not see this year and I don't believe we can thrive in closing environment and innovation definitely does not grow under such shallow person attitude.
hackathon ending in 5 minutes
the team during pitching session.
Many coder actually slept on the mall but for me, home sweet home. I had a self reflection with the team and professor actually gave valuable insight on the night in slack and on the next days. Something that I have never experience since left academic. The coding session stop at 12pm on day 2 and then participant are free for lunch whilst the organizer and judges are preparing themselves for participant's pitching session. There were two rounds of pitching and each team just got about 2-3 minutes explanation their product and 1-2 minutes for question and answer.
It's a sad but reality that, during shortlisted team who pitch again on the stage, many judges keep using the word such as intellectual property, monetization, how you sell your products or how you make money out of your product. Honestly, these types of questions should be the responsible of the business segment professional. Event such as this should have been focus on the coding spirit and to actually value on the product that actually meet the set criterias. Yes, no doubt money is the topic of a company but that should have been an trivial issue for company, what's matter above is companies should be the main catalyst to drive the country to a better quality country. Not just project monetary society. Remember, the participant are as young as 15.
Till then, keep coding and if you are interested to code, please feel free to contact me for any possibility to work together.