Georgia Tech Sponsors South's Largest Hackathon

Atlanta, GA

Hundreds of the nation’s top student hackers will swarm the Georgia Tech campus this weekend, as Tech sponsors its first official hackathon.

At stake is the largest hackathon prize to date: $60,000.

Hackers from across the nation will travel by bus and plane to represent more than 100 universities in the South’s largest hackathon. The mission: Build products to improve the state of software and hardware today.

“There are no limits and no restrictions during the 36 hours, except for the limits of the hackers’ imagination and their stamina,” said Shehmeer Jiwani, a computer science major at Georgia Tech and an organizer of the student-run event. “They can explore the vulnerabilities of existing hardware, create new apps, or develop new code.”

“For HackGT, we’ve said that you should be able to come to a hackathon and build a chair, as long as it’s the best chair we’ve ever seen,” said Pavleen Thukral, also a computer science major and organizer. “As long as students come here with a determination to build and to ‘Expect Greatness’.”

Sponsors range from eBay to twilio to Microsoft to Bloomberg, with several providing hardware and programs for hackers to improve or to discover vulnerabilities. These include Intel’s Edison modules, the Leap Motion Controller, the Thalmic Myo, and the Oculus Rift. 

The top team will win a $10,000 grand prize, along with an additional $50,000 in investments from Tech Square Labs to launch their winning project.

Thad Starner, a professor with the School of Interactive Computing and the technical lead for Google Glass, will serve as the event’s closing keynote speaker on Sunday, Sept. 21.  Scott Grimes, CEO of Cardlytics and a partner sponsor, will provide the keynote during the opening ceremony on Friday, Sept. 19.

Judges include Carie Davis, global director of innovation and entrepreneurship at The Coca-Cola Company; Dave Jagoda, technical director at Andreessen Horowitz; Paul Judge, an entrepreneur cited by MIT Technology Review as one of the Top 100 innvoators in the world; Michael Koziol, director of the Atlanta office of Huge, a leading digital design and development firm; and Joe Uhl, operation director for MailChimp.

For information, visit hackgt.com.

Last revised August 1, 2017