As the special adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Education, Obafela Bank-Olemoh, stood up to announce the winner of the first ever CodeLagos hackathon, the hall quieted. Those who had presented were on their feet, some munching on their fingers, waiting for who among them will win the 2 million grand prize on offer.
Team SharkByte, the only hardware company of the day, emerged winner by presenting an IOT (Internet of Things) project SharkByte: a smart gas indicator. The device has several use cases; it can detect when cooking gases are below a certain point and alert households to take necessary action. It can also serve as an alarm system that detects fire outbreaks and gas leaks. The data being monitored is conveniently hooked to the consumer through interfaces for Android and Web; they expect the monitoring to be in real-time.
The tool, in its current form, was presented on a breadboard circuitry (with microcontroller and sensors connected) and in a dramatic demo, with a gas-cooker being lit in front of the judges and smoke filling the hall, they showed how the device would work in a kitchen environment. The team of 5, including 2 females, who were all taught to program through CodeLagos, also get incubation with Impact Hub to grow their idea into a profit-making business.
CodeDivas won N1 million as first runner-up . The team of 2 females presented Agro Health Plus.
SWC, Secure Wellness Challenged, emerged second runner-up and won N750,000 for their effort, presented a chat-bot based mental health support system. They aim to provide a platform where people who are going through depression can connect others with similar challenges; they also get to meet health-experts, mostly psychologist, who will provide professional advice to members of the community.
Some of the other 12 teams that presented include; Errands24, a platform like Fivers, that helps Lagosians get gigs online in an easy fashion; AttenTrack, an attendance tracking system, that aims to help organisations track the movement of their members; FoodBank, preventing food wastage, aims to link grocery-stores whose inventory are about to expire with people who need to buy cheap food; QuickGas, don’t let your gas finish, is a marketplace where people can order cooking-gas online and get it delivered to their doorsteps.
Another interesting idea was Flora: a platform that offers agric related online courses to people who are not full-time farmers. The target audience are people who have a source of income but would like to run small-scale farming activities; these people do not have the knowledge nor the expertise to pursue their dream which is where Flora comes in. By providing locally relevant courses, accessed through the convenience of their devices, these future farmers take one positive step to actualising their dreams.
CodeLagos, a Lagos State sponsored event, aims to train 1 million programmers by 2020 and this hackathon has shown that products of program are learning the skills needed to excel in the world.
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