Makeathon 2016: Recap

Put on by OHI/O, the Makeathon is Ohio State University’s largest annual hardware hackathon. This year, 115 students from the Ohio State University and beyond worked 24 hours during the weekend of March 5 to create innovative hardware projects. The event grew from last year’s 2015 event, which welcomed 67 students.

Makethon 2016: Recap Video

This annual event provides a great opportunity for hardware-enthusiasts (and anyone interested in it!) the opportunity to work in teams to create clever, innovative hardware solutions to today’s problems. 2016’s event was fortunate to have the support of Harris, Battelle, Texas Instruments, and Ohio State’s Eta Kappa Nu chapter. Held in the open spaces of Knowlton Hall, the event fostered a space for open communication and team work.

This year’s projects ranged from tracking the intensity of the sun, to running a car via remote control. Eric Bauer, Electronics Club President and OHI/O organizer, provided his thoughts after the event: “I thought the event went very well overall. I was pleasantly surprised at the caliber of everyone’s projects and what they were able to do in a 24-hour period.”

This year’s first place team (Team M4C) consisted of Anand Vignesh Venkataraman, Bhargavi Govindarajan, Bhansuri Sridharan, Priyanka Ganesh and Srinija Kambham. All Team M4C members are graduate students at The Ohio State University’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering with a passion for technology. They created a smart glove that translates sign language into English. That way, people who can’t use sign language can understand and learn it. The best part? They created an opportunity. Gloves for translating sign language exist, but are expensive; Team M4C says their glove can be sold for $5.

Team M4C’s sign language translator, and 1st-place winner of 2016’s Makeathon.

Team member Priyanka Ganesh provided her thoughts on the event. “All of us truly enjoyed the experience. It was rewarding and kind of an eye-opener as to what we could possible do in 24 hours. None of us thought we could even stay awake the whole night. With the mentors that we had, and all of the help, and all of the hardware supplies the team at OHI/O was giving us, it gave us the perfect platform to do what we set out to do.”

The second-place winner was The RobotterMilk Puncakes, who created a project inspired by autonomous vehicles. Ryan Niemocienski, Sean Whitehurst, David Frank, and Cater Hurd created a custom fixture that could be attached to a car’s brake and gas pedals, as well as the streering wheel, such that the car could be remotely controlled. The team even brought a full-sized car to test it out, though the wheels were raised off the ground for safety purposes.

The third-place winner was the Gusteau Group, who created a fully-automated pasta maker. The device was capable of pouring water and cooking noodles with a heat plate, along with adding sauce and serving the user with the push of a button. This clever group consisted of Clayton Greenbaum, Grace Crumrine, Aaron Bonnell-Kangas, and Larsen Marquardt.

Alongside OHI/O main hackathon program, HackOHI/O, the Makeathon reflects the growing hacker and tech culture found at Ohio State. For a list of many of the other projects created at Makeathon 2016, along with pictures and descriptions, visit http://make-oh.io/projects/2016/.

For more on the Makeathon, check out the following coverage of the event:

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