On May 30th, after months of preparation, the very first #AquaHacking in Canada came to a close! IBM was a large corporate sponsor of the Aquahacking event where teams submitted applications that would help improve and preserve the Ottawa River. This event involved presentations by environmental experts and government representatives, as well as a discussion by Alexandara Cousteau, granddaughter of the legendary explorer, Jacques Cousteau, on water preservation benefits from the social tech/digital connections being established.
IBM has a history of involvement in water issues in Canada and has partnered across the country to implement smarter water solutions for many years. Lila Adamec, the IBM Ecosystem Toronto City Leader, was the key leader for this event from IBM, helping to establish the sponsorship and promotion of Bluemix (http://ibm.biz/Aquahacking) as part of the event. More than a dozen teams submitted applications as part of the AquaHacking event. Those teams that chose to use IBM’s Bluemix as their platform were awarded bonus points for their solution scoring. Environmental and technical experts worked closely with the coders on their applications and submissions. The applications were then evaluated by a jury of experts ranging from environmental and technical backgrounds.
The First place award for the AquaHacking was split between the My River team, who created an app enabling citizens to easily report water issues, allowing municipalities to resolve issues quickly and the River Ranger team, who built a geospatial social network, enabling members to view and share information with others based on shared geographic regions. The Aqua Radar team, led by IBM’s Nick Edgar, won the competition’s Future Star award for their app that looks at hydrometric data and lets users pull data based on locations. All of these solutions were built using IBM’s Bluemix platform (http://ibm.biz/Aquahacking).
For more coverage visit:
ITBusiness.ca: The Ottawa River is about to be hacked and that’s a good thing
CBC News: ‘Aquahacks’ design apps for Ottawa River
I loved spending the last 2 days at the NASA Space App Challenge.
The first day I was at the Women of Data with 75 amazing women ranging in age from 13 to 75. Each was incredible — and I learned so much from each one. Saturday was the first day of the Hackathon ,and while IBM was engaged in over 70 of the hacks and the virtual hack with IBM Bluemix, I was at the NYC hack today with 3 astronauts, the NASA CTO, and Beth from NASA who runs the Innovation Program. I had so many AHA moments but I thought I’d pick out my top 3 and share with all of you!
1. Community Matters.
Yesterday I was reminded of one of my favorite quotes by Brian Solis: “Community is much more than belonging to something; it’s about doing something together that makes belonging matter.” As we were chatting yesterday after a session, our circle of “girls” kept growing and growing. I loved the community that formed as we were all united in a common goal!
2. Hacks Give Confidence
Today I met amazing people who have gained tremendous confidence through hacking. Olivia who “borrowed” an XML book from her brother, and then googled Ruby to learn language, Tae who attends Leigh University who could hardly sit still for a chat cause he wanted to go and code, and Katie who is a great combo of theater and code !!
3. NASA’s Data Gift not only helps NASA, but all of us! Open source and crowdsoucing has a MAJOR impact!
During this Space Apps Challenge, NASA opened up new APIs and 200 data sources. They did this not for their own gain, but for helping space, earth, and entrepreneurs. Their own astronauts are committed to the collaborative economy — authentically !
This era of the collaborative economy is going to change the world. And that’s what I witnessed today — a world changing event!