Amina, a Sondrel Senior Consultant based in the South of France, was one of the organisers who put together a 'Hackathon' event, and wrote up what proved to be an interesting and innovative couple of days. She is very active in promoting electronics engineering to the wider community, particularly promoting engineering to women as a career choice. If you are looking for a career in ic design consultancy, you can find all of our current vacancies on the website. We have offices in Europe, Morocco and China.
WHAT IS A HACKATHON?
A hackathon is an event where people of varied skill sets meet to develop ideas with utilising current technology. The first Women Hackers Action Tank (WHAT) hackathon on the French Riviera took place at a business school campus in Sophia Antipolis on 25/26 November.
The result can be the formation of a start-up....
Originally, a hackathon was a marathon of hackers who joined forces for a specific purpose (coder, hacker ...). The model has spread to the business community, where the idea remains the same: to innovate in a radical and collective way in a limited time. As it attracted more and more people from outside computer and electronics backgrounds, the diverse skill sets were seen to be an additional asset to the process. The idea: entrepreneurs present their project to the participants, form a team, and work together. After 24 or 48 hours, the whole team presents the project's progress to a jury. The result is often a proposal rather than a proven application, and the team thus continues to work together – hence it could result in the birth of a start-up.
Here is Amina and members of her team at the event
The first Women Hackers Action Tank (WHAT) hackathon took place this year at a business school campus in Sophia Antipolis, on Friday Nov 25th and Saturday Nov 26th. For 24 hours, women and men with varied profiles (developers, salespeople, creatives, motivated contributors, etc.) worked in teams to create innovative solutions on the theme “For a trustworthy world, womens safety and security”. This year, the "security" word was used in the broadest sense, and sign-posted teams to develop digital solutions addressing the issues of cyber security, safe cities or even safe employment and finances.
To motivate mothers and fathers to participate in the WHAT hackathon, a programming tutorial had been put together for participants’ children (from 10 years-old and above). A robot competition was designed by WHAT team for the occasion.
The goal of the initiative was not only to increase the presence of women in hackathons but to promote diversity - gender, age and different skill sets working side by side.
The goal of the initiative was not only to increase the presence of women in hackathons but to promote the richness of diversity - gender, age and skill sets. This was largely achieved. The 95 participants, of which 31% were women, formed 14 teams and devised various solutions to address security issues. These included:
The development of a solution enabling companies to identify people promptly after an unexpected event such as a Safe Point
Connecting people to travel safely on public transport (WonderBuddy)
Using augmented reality in First Aid (Save My Life )
A connected robotic solution to improve the safety of isolated people (LinkObot)
A real-time security alert application for family members (Safe Family)
A great group photo of the participants in the Hackathon
..how important it is to think and work as a team, whilst still taking individual ownership of tasks..
Throughout this enjoyable challenge we got involved in planning, project leadership, project budgeting, marketing, communication, and how important it is to motivate others by giving positive feedback to your team mates.
It helped us to improve how to raise urgent issues effectively, how important it is to think and work as a team, whilst still taking individual ownership of tasks. And how to keep calm and stay focused on the planned schedule and goal no matter what happens!
Sondrel Senior Engineering Consultant
You can connect with the WHAT organisation via twitter @WhatHackers and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/WhatHackers/
Sondrel manages ic design projects for international clients over a diverse range of industry sectors. You can find more information on the Sondrel website, or read our blog series on the subject.
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