6 Hackathon Innovations & Startups

October 17, 2019 / in Computer Science, Education, / by number8

Hackathons are known to be breeding grounds for innovation. Often put on by an organization or university, these collaborative computer programming events are a great way to empower young entrepreneurs and thinkers alike. What is a Hackathon? A hackathon takes place over a set period of time, usually a weekend. During this time, teams set out to develop a solution to a problem in the form of a prototype that they will then pitch to whoever is hosting the hackathon. While primarily coders participate in these hacking marathons, people from all backgrounds including designers and marketers are encouraged to be involved during the software development process. Often many successful applications arise as a result! Here are 6 recent hackathon innovations & startups: 

E-Farm

E-Farm is a service that was developed at Be-Bound. It is online produce market that allows consumers to purchase directly from farmers.  Shoppers can source food from multiple farms and get to know the story behind both the farmer and their farm before their order is delivered to their home.

StartTalking

StartTalking is an app that connects users with counselors, coaches and doctors. Originating out of Kansas City's Hacking the Gigabit City event, users can send messages, video conference or participate in group sessions with their providers from anywhere anytime. The app is secure, affordable, and guarantees privacy.

PowerWells

PowerWells came out of a Techstars Startup Weekend. The service provides light and mobile phone charging from electronic waste and commercial solar panels to those in remote communities that don't have access to electricity.

Piece of Mind

Piece of Mind is a wearable device for patients with Alzheimer or Dementia. Created during an Angelhack, the app allows caregivers to monitor a patient's movements in real time and prevents loved ones from getting lost.

EchoLoco

EchoLoco is an app that was developed during the Urban-X Hackathon. It provides audio maps for the visually impaired; helping them to safely navigate cities with the aid of real time cues.

CropSafe

CropSafe is an online platform that was created during an Angelhack in Dublin. It works to predict impending diseases and crop contamination by surveying plots of land via satellite imagery and machine learning. The service even offers solutions to affected landowners. Our dedicated team of software developers at Number9 are located in Louisville, Kentucky. Together, with our nearshore office in Costa Rica, we have worked to launch countless software projects successfully. Contact us today by calling 502-890-7665 to learn more about what we can do to help you complete your project.  

5 Programming Languages for Beginners

There are so many programming languages in the tech industry, that for the average layman it can be overwhelming. Generally speaking, these languages are how we communicate tasks to a computer. They're a tool to help computers quickly and efficiently process data no matter how large or complex it may be. As technology evolves, so do it's languages. Whether you're looking for someone who can code or are interested in learning yourself, starting with a basic understanding of the languages used to code is important in order to stay up to date with most relevant methods of programming.  For beginners, it's best to focus on languages that inherently teach basic computer science concepts. Languages that are dynamic and don't have any strict rules on how they have to be written tend to be the most suitable for those just beginning to dip their toes into the world of coding. 

Here to help you get started, are 5 programming languages we recommend for beginners:

1. HTML

While HTML is considered the most basic and commonly known language, everyone has to start somewhere. Used to create web pages, HTML is a markup language that defines the structure and layout of various electronic documents. For example, when formatting the content on a website or email, HTML is utilized to ensure that both the text and graphics are displayed correctly. 

2. Python

Perhaps the most popular introductory language, Python is object oriented and used to integrate systems or automate tasks. Known for it's easy to learn syntax and flexible semantics, Python is a good beginners language because it focuses on readability. It's a script language that reads like English. With Python, programming is often more manageable because fewer lines of coding are required. 

3. Ruby

Ruby is also an easy to read general purpose scripting language and therefore similar to Python. It features a web application framework called Ruby on Rails that provides some shortcuts. While Ruby is more flexible when compared to Python, it is also less direct and explicit in it's approach. 

4. JavaScript

JavaScript is a fully compatible scripting language and as such is already built into most web browsers. It's used to create dynamic and interactive web pages for a more user friendly experience by translating static elements into animations.  JavaScript code also helps load new content without having to reload the entire page and is run on only a browser.

5. Java

Java gets it's syntax fro C and C++. (While these are more difficult to learn, they do impact most programming languages and as such are also a good way to place to start in order to grasp the basic concepts of multiple coding languages.) Java has it's own platform and is known for it's ability to run in any virtual machine or browser. It's a standalone programming language, and is statically typed; meaning it has more structure than the others listed above and needs to be compiled before it can be executed. At Number8, we connect companies with IT talent and software developers that are fully trained in product development. By encouraging talent to come up with creative solutions, they remain motivated and positively contribute to a healthy company culture. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page.

Top Universities in Central America that Offer Computer Science Degrees

Getting a computer science degree in Central America has its benefits.

computer science First of all, the cost of living in these countries is considerably lower. By immersing yourself in a Spanish speaking area, you acquire a lifelong skill that also improves your cognitive functions. Studying computer science prepares you for an ever-evolving career needed in just about every industry there is. The number of Central American universities that have excellent computer science programs may surprise you. Here are a select few...

Latin America University of Science & Technology - Costa Rica

There is a growing industry of eco-conservation that needs bright young minds to contribute. What better place to study computer sciences than one of the world's leading countries in environmental protection? The Latin America University of Science & Technology in San Jose, Costa Rica is a private, non-profit institution that is the only bilingual university in the country. The computer science courses at ULACIT are challenging with a focus on quality, innovation, and service. Furthermore, ULACIT prides itself and facilitating an environment that encourages new ideas regarding eco-preservation.

University of Panama

The University of Panama has been around since 1935 and was created by presidential decree. Also, as a public university, tuition at the University of Panama is free-- even for international students. With its storied history and low cost of living, getting your computer science degree at UoP is an excellent choice if you want a world-class education at a fraction of the cost of United States universities.

University of Costa Rica

Costa Rica is one of the happiest, healthiest, and environmentally conscious places in the world. The country has a high quality of life which earned it the nickname "the Switzerland of Central America." Additionally, Costa Rica's ecological beauty and heavenly climate are unmatched. Along with those benefits, the University of Costa Rica is one of the finest higher education institutions in the world. Furthermore, it is the most prestigious university in Costa Rica and has several satellite campuses around the country. UoCR is a secular and humanist institution, encouraging social work and environmental activism from their students-- an attitude that reflects the Costa Rican lifestyle.

Florida State University - Panama

This international branch of Florida State University is the second oldest university in Panama. Their computer science program is the only major you can complete entirely in the Republic of Panama Campus. The campus is at the City of Knowledge sustainable complex, which used to be the Clayton military base. Therefore, a booming international community surrounds FSU Panama students and encourages innovation with ample resources to meet your goals.

National University of Costa Rica

Studying in Costa Rica is perfect for a nature lover looking for adventure. In your off time, you can explore the country's active volcanoes, go white water rafting, or surf in the crystal blue waters. Located in Heredia, the National University of Costa Rica separates itself from the tourist filled streets of San Jose and close to the country's natural beauty. Furthermore, the university curriculum is rigorous and varied. It's the perfect place to go for a diverse university experience while you get your computer science degree.   At Number8 we recruit computer science students with a sense of adventure and innovative minds. We believe that studying abroad in a top-notch university like the ones above prepares you for the fast paced tech market and IT. Are you interested in learning more about our developers, or do you think you are qualified to join our team? Then give us a call at (502) 890-7665 today!

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