News

Mobile app contestants get creative

Situated in a classroom around a table covered with energy drinks, soda and energy shots, coders were hard at work at UHack, a 48-hour hackathon held last weekend in the McArthur Engineering Building.

Starting Friday, participants were given two days to create their own web or mobile app.

The hackathon, which was hosted by the Association for Computer Mechanics (ACC) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), was the first ever held at UM.

Apps were then presented on Sunday to a panel of judges made up of faculty members. They were evaluated for their productivity, originality and user experience.

“A lot of us intern at companies that hold hackathons so instead of doing it for the first time there, we wanted to bring it here so people have an opportunity to gain experience,” said junior Oscar Sanchez, who organized the event.

While 28 people registered, many elected to work in teams so 10 apps were created at the event.

Sophomores Adam Orshan, Thomas Cooper and Colin Francis worked together on an app that would transcribe your phone call and highlight important information like dates and times.

While they are familiar with coding, they were writing the program in a different coding language than they were used to.

“It’s like trying to write a 10-page paper in French when you only know Spanish,” Orshan said.

The team said they relied on Redbull energy drinks and adrenaline to keep working throught the contest.

Other participants made sure they had time for a power nap.

Seniors Wei Yang and Omar Hussain, who were awarded first place, brought sleeping bags and an air mattress, and were able to get about five hours sleep on the first night.

The winners built a mobile app that creates different pitches when the phone is moved, allowing it to be used as a musical instrument.

They won a MacBook Air, $500 and a year-long membership to GitHub, a social website for coding.

“This is our first time at a hackathon so we had a lot of trouble,” Hussain said.

Junior Christopher Jacobs earned second place for his app, Musicon. The program generates a playlist based on party attendees and their musical interests.

Jacobs received a Xbox Kinect Bundle, a year-long membership to Xbox Live and GitHub, Xbox games, and $250.

Sponsors of the event, such as Microsoft, had representatives come in to help participants with their coding issues along the way.

“For a lot of people this is their first time at an event like this, so to work together quickly under the time pressure is difficult,” Sanchez said.

April 1, 2012

Reporters

Jackie Salo


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

View photos as Miami Hurricanes Coach Jim Morris ends 41-year career on Saturday, May 19, 2018, at M ...

The sullen, charcoal sky opened with a vengeance Saturday afternoon at Mark Light Field in Coral Gab ...

Hurricanes football aficionados: How does another College GameDay at the University of Miami campus ...

Get out your calendars once again, UM football fans. The Atlantic Coast Conference has announced the ...

Lonnie Walker IV, so eager to begin his professional basketball career that he left the University o ...

A snapshot guide to the start of summer in and around UM. ...

Former investment banker Charmel Maynard leads UM’s investments and treasury functions. ...

Over his more than two decades at the U, the dean of students from 1976-1989 always put students fir ...

The final Sea Secrets lecture at the Rosenstiel School examines the biofluorescence of marine organi ...

Maintenance mechanic Milton Davis has kept UM housing humming for decades. ...

No. 7 seed Miami opens its run at the 2018 ACC Baseball Championship Tuesday, May 22 against No. 11 ...

After 25 years, head coach Jim Morris had just one request for the pregame festivities for his final ...

In honor of Jim Morris' final regular season game as head coach at Miami on Saturday, May 19, t ...

Sophomore righthander Evan McKendry struck out 11 to help lead the Hurricanes to their 10thstraight ...

Check out over 60 of the top pictures from the Miami women's tennis team's matchup with to ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.