Westminster Students Take Top Prizes at Illinois Hackathon

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Manohar Pradhan, Chad Doebelin, and Jon Antel, members of Westminster’s ACM club holding 1st place vendor awards for their work in developing cloud-hosted voice-controlled software defined virtual networks.

Members of the Westminster Association for Computing Machinery club competed at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s annual Hackathon event. Hackathon is a computer science event that takes place all year round across the country. This 36-hour event, hosted by Major League Hacking (MLH), tests the creativity, endurance, and teamwork of the selected few who are able to participate.

Each individual team is given a chance to imagine and create an application for either a specific company or the general public. The separate events are sponsored by the individual companies that give out their own prizes. These prizes vary from an iPad, $500, and a chance to have the winning team’s school host next year’s Hackathon.

Tyler Heinrich, Jordan Colgan, Jon Antel, Manohar Pradhan, and Chad Doebelin, were the members selected to attend the Hackathon Event.

Antel, Pradhan, and Doebelin were one of the teams to win first place prizes in one of the coding events by finding a way to block the traffic on a network by simply calling a phone number.

Heinrich and Colgan’s team didn’t place in their events, but they created a “very cool” application for Pebble, according to Heinrich: “We put together a software hack that also used Pebble hardware.” Pebble has recently come up with a high-tech watch called the Pebble Steel. “Our application takes all the Hackathon tweets in Illinois and it sends the top tweet every 15 seconds which goes straight to your watch,” said Heinrich.

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