LNMIIT First Hackathon

LNMIIT’s first, full-scale Hackathon event was held on April 17, 2016. Hackathon, “an event in which computer programmers and others involved in software development, including graphic designers, interface designers and project managers, collaborate intensively on software projects,” had many participants. It brought together undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty and staff, showcasing LNMIIT’s growing technical culture.
This document details participants, motivation behind the event, organizational information, event impact, participant feedback & insights and future plans.

WHY A HACKATHON?

The primary goal of this event was to raise awareness of technical talent at LNMIIT and foster a competitive, yet cooperative, and congenial culture for talented individuals. It also allowed participants to connect with faculty, labs, centers on campus, and most importantly, with each other.

Hackathons give developers an opportunity to come together, work collaboratively, tackle problems, and compete for fame and glory. LNMIIT has a rich community of student developers. From the Open Source Club to students in Computer Science and Engineering, the campus is home to a talented set of budding programmers.

Planning

Planning for the hackathon began in the beginning of April. An internal call for sponsors was sent out, confirming funding for food and refreshments. Being a 10+ hour event, there were several specific needs. Power strips and extension cords were made available for power access. Technical support for programmers, 10 engineering student volunteers, as well as hardware assistance, during the presentations were also provided.

Organising Team with Judge

Demographics

There were 58 participants, constituting 17 teams of which 12 gave demonstrations of their work.
Event Timeline
Check in for participants started at 10am on Sunday. Students programmed non-stop for 12 hours, followed by 5-minute “lightning” demonstrations at the end. Presentations and judging wrapped up by 11:30 pm on Sunday. Food and beverages were served throughout the event. Engineering student volunteers were present throughout the event to provide technical support.
Judges
Prof. Narasimha Bolloju, Dr. Sakthi Balan Muthiah and Mr. Vikas Bajpai (CSE Faculty)

Projects and Winners

Projects ranged from android apps to web based applications, all coded from scratch. Judges scored on project creativity, technical depth, challenge of doing the task in a short amount of time and usefulness in the real world. Additionally, judges awarded goodies for the best and unique demonstrations of ideas.

Cash prizes worth R s. 2500/- (First prize), Rs. 1500/- (Second prize) and Rs. 1000/- (Third prize) were distributed immediately.

There were three winners:

Shubham Jain (tube2gif) [1st Place]
Romit Jain (Live Score) [2nd Place]
Shashank (Data Visualization) [3rd Place]
Winner collecting cheques from Sakthi Balan Sir, FoSSLNMIIT Faculty Lead

There were many other teams with awesome mentions Instagram, Github, voting portal and more…

Feedback from students

A post event feedback form was sent to the students. Satisfaction ratings averaged very high — 4.5 on 5 for enjoyment at the event. “Great prizes. Great organization. It was a great opportunity to learn, meet peers, and network with professionals” said one student.

A few quotes:
“It was an amazing event with wonderful opportunity to learn
and explore. Hackathon should be held frequently.”
“We didn’t know each other before we did this”, said one team, who went from being strangers to working together over
10+ hours and producing a demonstrable project.

Future Plans

As the event was very successful and we have a growing, active developer community in LNMIIT, we are considering holding another similar event in the near future. Care would be taken to not enforce or monetarily incentivize these tasks, since the hackathon is about creativity, promoting culture, and identifying student talent.