PalyHacks: Programming the Future

Students from China and the Bay Area came to participate in Palo Alto High School’s first hackathon, partnered with WeChat, Palo Alto High
School, City of Palo Alto, and various firms in the Silicon
Valley. Two preliminary hackathons were held: one for students in California, and another for the finalists of a partnership hackathon in China called “Program the Future.”


We began by hosting the California preliminary round in Palo Alto High School, on March 24 and 25th of 2017, attracting students from various schools in the Bay Area such as Bellarmine College Preparatory, Gunn High School, and Monta Vista High School, as well as a few from Southern California. The winners, without ado, were…

1. Hotspot

An iOS application created out of concern for consumer economic efficiency in transportation, Hotspot uses data to show the user points of interest near them that are trending to pick up passengers in a more efficient way.

Rushil Mehra, Alex Yoo, Samraj Kalkat

2. Pond

A web application born out of concern for scheduling conflicts, Pond encourages transparency between teachers and students to juggle schoolwork and life more easily.

Anthony Xie, Vivian Young, Aadria Bagchi, Dylan Zou (not pictured)

3. ARBoard

A cross platform application built for business and organization promotion, ARBoard creates tokens in an augmented reality world that encourages promotional material in a more streamlined fashion.

Patrick Zhong, Adriano Hernandez, Yevgeniy Barkalov (not pictured)

Best Beginner Hack: GoogleAR

An android application produced out of a concern for ease of information access, GoogleAR allows the user to hold up your phone to scan your environment, retrieving relevant information from Google to assist the user.

Cole Kissane

.Tech Best Domain Name and Best Gaming Hack: really-bad-shogi

A web application that amplifies the complexity in Shogi, a Japanese game similar to chess, to emphasize the aspect of strategy.

Daniel Chu, William Park, Michael Huang

Following the preliminary round, the top three teams from PalyHacks and the first place team from “Program the Future” were selected to participate in the final round, hosted on August 26. The format of the final round was a presentation round, where the following judges from Citcon, Sky Capital, and WeChat gathered to evaluate the projects based on creativity, implementation, practicality, and impact.

1. Pond

The second place team from PalyHacks stepped up to become first place in the final round, and were awarded the grand prize, a summer internship at WeChat.

Dylan Zou, Vivian Young, Anthony Xie (not pictured)

2. Sports Manager (SPM)

The first place team from “Innovating the Future,” the team of SPM’s flights were sponsored by WeChat and traveled from China to participate in the final round.

Haichuan Tan, Zhuohao Yu

3. ARBoard

The third place team from PalyHacks brilliantly demonstrated their improved product, implementing additional functionality and once again took third place.

Patrick Zhong, Adriano Hernandez

Wrapping up PalyHacks 2017

We would like to offer a massive thank you to everyone who came to the event. Without all of you, we could not have made this event happen. We are looking forward to seeing you improve your projects and skills in the future, and keep an eye out for PalyHacks 2.0!

— The PalyHacks Team