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2016 hackathon is biggest ever in Ohio



Hundreds of students from the midwest and beyond transformed ideas into prototypes in just 24 hours November 19-20 during HackOHI/O 2016, The Ohio State University’s largest hackathon yet and by far the largest in Ohio.

Attendance at the annual event has grown tremendously since it launched four years ago, from 100 participants in 2013 to 750 students from 26 universities in 2016. As attendance has grown it has also diversified, organizers said, attracting students from a wide variety of majors, including data analytics, finance, psychology and violin performance, to name a few, as well as computer science and engineering students.

“HackOHI/O provides a unique experience for every student, from computer science engineering to piano performance majors, to learn from each other, develop new skills, and connect with industry professionals and career opportunities,” said computer science and engineering major Winnie Li, one of the event organizers. “Students learn by doing, and these experiences are incredibly powerful in sparking motivation and creativity that extend past just one weekend.”

Tables jammed with students, laptops and electronic devices galore filled the 22,600-square-feet Ohio Union Grand Ballroom as teams built more than 100 technology projects with the aim of solving a problem or meeting a need in the marketplace. No experience was required to participate and students were supported in their efforts by more than 100 volunteer mentors.

After 24 hours of “hacking,” teams presented their ideas to 100+ judges, including fellow students, faculty and tech company representatives. Teams were judged on aspects such as technical difficulty, creativity, usefulness and presentation.


More than $8,000 in prizes was up for grabs to teams thanks to HackOHI/O 2016 sponsors  Amazon Web Services, JP Morgan Chase, Wexner Medical Center, Aver, JobsOhio, Capital One, Battelle, Harris, Paxata, Esri, CAS, GitHub, Namecheap, Accenture, rev1 ventures, Nationwide, TEKSystems, Hyland, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Translation Data Analytics, CoverMyMeds, Exact, Cisco and Pillar.

Awards were given for top efforts in various categories, including most impactful application, best hardware hack, most ambitious, most original and more. The 10 winning teams and their projects are:

  • Most impactful application: 16 - Nishant Rimal, Shivang Saxena, Cameron Millspaugh, and Kenny Kelley
    A community review website for the accessibility of restaurants, businesses and public places to allow people with disabilities to find information easily and raise awareness about accessibility.
  • Most ambitious hack - Hatchli - Ian Hansborough, Trey Hakanson, Greg Miller and Dan Arters
    A web platform and chrome extension that uses machine learning and NLTK sentiment analysis to classify political news articles based on left/right bias. It integrates directly into a user’s Facebook feed, warning of bias and suggests complimentary articles with an opposing view.
  • Best software hack - The Yung and Reckliss - Mark Labib, Matias Grioni and Matthew Le
    Visualization representation and compression of audio to help the hearing impaired experience music.
  • Most original hack - Automanous - Danny Flax, Viral Patel, Benjamin Stammen and Yash Gusani
    The first mixed reality chess set available on the iPhone with an online multiplayer mode that allows users to play a physical game of chess with others in real-time across the world.
  • Best hardware hack - COFFEE - Carter Hurd and David Frank
    An automatic coffee maker that is a comical look at the future of home appliances. It can load its own filters and grounds while also answering questions with its built-in voice command capabilities.
  • Best teamwork - FireStream - Andrew Brooke, Caleb Adcock and Joe Kollin
    A mobile application built for iOS and Android that allows users to create shared music playlists on the fly.
  • Best designed hack - CAD-KD - Halid Ziya Yerebakan, Abdulmecit Gungor and Sarkhan Badirli
    An application that finds the nearest parking lot to the user’s final destination and shows driving directions to it as well as and walking direction from the lot to the final destination to minimize overall travel time.
  • Best new hack - Writer's Block - Carl Calcara, Jeff Jarry, Jesse Jordan and Marek Mutch

    An application that allows people to collaborate and create new stories together. 

  • Top 10 - Quantum Tunnelers - Larry King, Nick Crescimanno and Shreyas Muralidharan
    A drone controllable in real-time over any 4G/LTE network worldwide using Amazon Web Services, a laptop and the on-board Raspberry Pi 3 with 4G wireless hotspot.

  • Top 10 - Project Lit - Chad Holl, Levi Klingler, James London and Collin Stipe
    An app to demonstrate control and oversight of lights, motion detectors and various appliances found in homes.

Plans are already underway for HackOHI/O 2017.

Categories: CollegeStudents