Hackathon 2018

Core Compete has embraced a culture of learning and innovation since its inception. Holding Hackathons and Learning Challenges are just a couple ways Core Compete inspires employees across all geographies and levels to ideate, innovate and advance their skills. In all of this, we encourage the use of cutting-edge technology to solve business and social problems. In celebration of our 6th anniversary, we conducted Hackathon 2018. This was the second edition of a Hackathon event where teams from across our global locations, from the US to Europe and India, participated and applied their talents and imagination to interesting challenges.

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.”

                                                              – Albert Einstein

Core Compete Hackathon 2018 inspired ideas ranging from politics, chatbots and sports, to automation in the cloud, self-remediation, IOT and cost optimization. Developers put their hearts and minds to the projects they had a passion for. In total, there were 28 hackathon projects with each project having 3 to 4 team members from across global locations. This was a remarkably high participation rate and reflects the culture of learning, innovation and personal initiative that Core Compete espouses. The ideas imagined by developers correlated with industry trends around topics that reflect the pulse of activity at Core Compete and included: data orchestration and processing, machine learning and analytics automation.

The excitement and energy that Hackathon 2018 instilled was palpable and unprecedented. Teams were given cloud accounts on AWS and GCP that allowed them to take their ideas from concepts to reality. Allowing teams to come up with their own ideas helped attract three times more participants compared to last year. Another enabling factor was that this year we helped developers “clear the deck” of deliverables on the days of the event so they could manage their busy calendars and commitments.  Overall, Hackathon 2018 was held for three days and Core Compete provided all the logistics support so that the developers could spend more time creating and less time setting things up.

Here is a summary that provides a flavor of this year’s projects:

  1. Managing tollway billing using Google Cloud Platform Pub-sub and Google Vision API
  2. Recommending the end of gerrymandering of Congressional Districts by using unbiased, objective criteria
  3. Improving Intelligent Process Automation by identifying entities from scanned invoices using TensorFlow and cloud-based Machine Learning
  4. Exploring Predictive Analytics to answer the question, “Who is going to win the elections?” by using real-time analysis of citizens’ sentiments about major political parties
  5. Creating Apache Airflow Load Balancing to accelerate and optimize the processing of massive data workloads by predicting the capacity required by Airflow and scaling it up or down automatically based on the projected demand
  6. Using voice recognition and Alexa to talk to your data resulting in a more modernized Business Intelligence platform
  7. Applying analytics to Cricket and using big data to help identify and predict who will be the next Kohli, world-renowned batsman and Captain of India’s National Cricket Team
  8. Enabling Chatbots to automatically execute actions on behalf of administrators using mobile clients

Most of these projects involved real-time or high-volume data extraction and cleansing, like extracting census data, twitter feeds or Black Friday sales data. This means the projects are similar in nature to the work we do for our customers. This allows us to have fun and explore at the same time we build up practical skills on cloud platforms like Google Cloud and AWS. In addition, we used analytical platforms including Big Query, SAS Viya, Google Studio and Python in order to generate actionable insights and models. Furthermore, a couple of projects used Snowflake, an emerging data warehousing platform that many customers are beginning to ask us about.

Results – All teams presented their work to a jury of experts. Hackathon 2018 winners were rewarded with handsome cash prizes and goodies.

Shiva Kommareddi, Managing Partner, Core Compete said, “creating a flourishing culture of innovation and learning is strategically important at Core Compete. This ensures we deliver on our promise to delight customers with our agility, initiative and innovation. In that spirit, Hackathon 2018 projects allowed nearly 100 of our developers to create, innovate, learn and apply their skills in fun ways that can be reapplied in the future to solve customers’ technical and business problems more effectively and efficiently”.

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