Students venture into programming at Hack HW


Students presented their ideas for their programs at the school’s hackathon. Credit: Printed with permission of Emily Wesel ’19

Angela Tan

Students worked for 36 hours to develop programs at Hack HW, the school’s second hackathon, in the Mudd Library Feb 18-19.

Jonathan Damico ’18, Jordan Barkin ’18, Allen Gan ’18, and Matthew Wang ’18 won first place for their program Seamless, an extension for Google Docs that calculates typed equations.

The team also received Amazon taps and a one year subscription to Wolfram Development Platform and Mathematica as a first place prize.

Ari Sokolov ’19, Emily Wesel ’19, Coco Kaleel ’20 and Tyra Hirooka ’20 received a second place prize of a one year subscription to Wolfram Development Platform and Mathematica.  The team’s program, HW Beacon, was for school attendance and checking to see if teachers are at their desks.

Fidget cubes were awarded to members Samuel Buckley-Bonnano ’19, Sarah Moon ’19 and Rehaan Irfan ’19 of the third place team, for their program Superreview.

Students also had the option to attend workshops on topics such as the spam filter and its evolution.

“I had a great time at the Hackathon and enjoyed learning Xcode for the first time,”  Emily Wesel ’19 said. “It’s just really cool to learn how a Spam filter works.”

Damico said he appreciated the opportunity to bring his ideas to life.

“I gained more experience with making products [and] how to bring products from ideation to realization quickly,” Damico said.

Co-founders Justin Rose ’17 and Shelley Jain ’16 first brought Hack HW to the school last year because they wanted students to have a greater understanding about the programming world.

“[We] came up with the idea over the summer last year for a hackathon at Harvard-Westlake where students could learn industry techniques and practical applications of programming skills they study in school,” Rose said.