Second annual Hackathon takes place

Natalie Cosgrove

Printed with permission of Violet Barron ’22

HackHW hosted a 48 hour Zoom hackathon event for all students Feb. 12-14. Participants joined together in teams to design coding projects and create innovative solutions to problems.

Rohan Madhogarhia ’22, Tyler Donovan ’22 and Lana Lim ’22 planned the event. The judges were alumni including entrepreneur Sameer Gupta ’99, Senior Principal Engineer at Riot Games Josh Glazer ’96 and First Round Partner Todd Jackson ’99, and mathematics teacher Andy Stout and computer programming teacher Jessica Kaufman were chaperones.

Madhogarhia said his main goal for the event is having as many participants as possible with different types of experiences.

“I want people to push their comfort zones with this [hackathon],” Madhorgarhia said. “I think a lot of people say  ‘I’m not good enough for the Hackathon,’ or ‘I don’t want to do this because It’s 48 hours and too much of a commitment,’ but I really want to emphasize that this event is for everyone…I don’t see this as mainly a coding event, I see this as a design event where you try to find creative solutions to problems that you see and build a product off of that.”

Students were able to participate in a variety of projects with their groups.

Lim said that projects included 3D game, designs for a motorized pet bowl, an online music room and a program that helps fix court redacted documents; about 40 students participated in the event.  EchoAR, a software to help creators manage 3D content, also hosted a sponsored challenge and the winning team who used the EchoAr service could win a $50 Amazon gift card.

Madhogarhia said he enjoyed his first Hackathon in-person last year and is trying to ensure that the community aspect of the event is maintained with the transition online. 

Lukas Seklir ’21, Will Farhat ’21, Kosi Nwabueze ’21 won first place in the competition. Violet Barron ’22 placed third in the event with her team after creating a website that plays music based on the user’s mood. She said she was at first hesitant to join the tournament, but did so because her friend was joining.

“I know they always say that you don’t need any coding experience to be able to do this and I was skeptical of that at first, but I would say that is very true,” Barron said. “The people that I was working with, my friends in a coding class, were just as much as I, learning as we went along, so I would say, really go for it. Even if you don’t do anything with coding or know anything about computer science and you can create something really amazing.”

*Correction: Sameer Gupta ’99 is an entrepreneur, not a “doctor of medicine.”