#HackujBrno: 2024 Hackathon Seeks Technological Solutions To The City’s Problems
The City of Brno, in cooperation with Czechitas and the artificial intelligence platform Brno.AI, is organising #HackujBrno, a hackathon challenge to the public to develop a technological solution to improve life in the city. The event will start on 13 April, and conclude the next day.
In recent years, Brno has gained a reputation as a modern student city with a good quality of life, and has a very strong IT background in the form of many technology companies. However, with the city’s attractiveness and job opportunities come certain problems, as traffic is congested and the environment suffers. #HackujBrno is looking for creative ideas to solve some of these issues and move the city into the future.
Suggested data-driven projects may relate to transport (eg. improving navigation of Brno’s transport system, helping drivers/cyclists avoid traffic, reducing accidents, or facilitating bike-sharing through data), environment (eg. improving air quality, addressing the city’s heat island, helping the city predict or adapt to climate change) or communication with citizens (eg. a chatbot interface for the city’s website or an early warning app for civic disasters).
To develop their projects, teams are encouraged to use the data portal of the City of Brno, data.brno.cz, or the national catalogue of open data at data.gov.cz. Other possibilities involve current Brno transport timetables, road traffic information, or any other publicly available data sets.
In cooperation with the Brno.AI platform, there will also be a special prize of two tickets to the Machine Learning Prague 2024 conference, worth EUR 580, for a team that uses artificial intelligence as part of its solution. Teams are encouraged to take inspiration from existing projects around Europe.
The hackathon is open to all members of the public, but anyone with knowledge of Python, Java Script, SQL, databases, and data analysis could be particularly useful! There should also be at least one Back-Ender in the team. However, teams should not be limited to IT skills; due to the wide variety of the possible problems to be solved, geographers, designers, urban planners, sociologists, and other creatives will also find their role.
The organization will be mostly in English, but teams will be working independently most of the time, so the members can communicate in other languages. However, the organisers recommend expat participants either to know some Czech or to make a team including some Czech friends.
Those interested can register as teams of 3-5 people, or as individuals to be matched up with strangers before the start of the hackathon. There will be rewards of CZK 20,000, CZK 15,000 and CZK 10,000 for the top three projects. Participants are also guaranteed to meet interesting and inspiring people, and can immerse themselves in Brno in a new and creative way.
Taking place in SAP Labs, at the Spielberk Office Centre on Holandska, the event will begin at 9am on 13 April, and will finish at approximately 1pm the next afternoon, when the winner will be announced. Before that, an informal meeting will take place in Brno on 10 April at 6pm (at a location TBC), where participants will learn how to work with the available open data, and also meet their fellow hackers and the organisers.
The evaluation committee will consist of 5 members and will include representatives of the city, Czechitas, and the private sector. The main evaluation criterion is the utility of the project for the city and its citizens, whether it involves increasing transparency, streamlining processes or saving time. The second most important factor is the feasibility of implementing the solution in practice. The last evaluation criterion is the overall level of execution, i.e. the design and user-friendliness of the solution.
Entrance to the hackathon is 150 crowns per person, including refreshments. Registration will be closed when the capacity is full.