The 2015 AT&T Developer Summit Hackathon was held January 3rd and 4th at Rain Nightclub in the Palms Casino Resort. The event was held in conjunction with CES 2015.
This hackathon allowed attendees access to the latest technology, tools and services for the connected car, connected home and wearables, and more. Nearly 700 developers, designers and tech entrepreneurs from all around the world competed to win their share of $100,000 in cash and prizes by building the most innovative apps.
As part of the hackathon, there was an AT&T Women in Tech Challenge prize awarded.
“At AT&T, we have adopted a progressive approach to innovation – one that embraces openness and encourages collaboration between entrepreneurs and professionals of all genders and backgrounds,” the team at AT&T wrote on their website. “This challenge will be awarded to the best mobile app created by a women led team.”
The are the winners of the AT&T Hackathon Women in Tech Challenge were America Lopez and her twin sister, Penelope. The prize included $10,000.
“The AT&T Dev Summit hackathon is where programmers and non-programmers come together to make a great mobile app and/or hardware hack using the latest technology,” said America Lopez. “The theme of the event was to have an app and/or hardware hack for the connected car, connected home or other wearables.”
“This hackathon meant where students like us could try out the latest hardware, APIs, and software and go stalk the top notch experts all night long and have them teach us a thing or two about how to use their product or service,” added Penelope Lopez. “It really helps that they provide a place for us to call our own hacker zone to catch a power nap in the middle of crazy hacking and to grab food when the munchies kick in.”
America and Penelope attended the AT&T Developer Summit Hackathon thanks to the Hacker Bus from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, which was organized by Ben Nelson and AT&T.
“We use a motorcycle as our main mode of transportation to get to and from school so we are glad about that bus option to get to Las Vegas in one piece and on time,” said America Lopez.
Their winning hack was called the Body Cam Hack, and can be used by police officers, journalists, or those chasing storms.
“The Michael Brown case really affected public opinion that more people now are in favor of body cams on the police force,” America Lopez said. “Body cameras should not be stiff as the cameras on their police car dashboards. They have to be as smart as their mobile counterpart unit. People have seen smart watches, smart houses, and smart watches but they have not seen smart body cams. People should see this as the new face of wearable technology — a body cam that can use face-tracking technology.”
The hardware parts the pair used to allow the camera to move include an arduino, 2 standard servos, a 3-D printed pan/tilt bracket, joystick attached to lots of wires from their breadboard, and a wireless receiver camera. For other areas of the project, they used a Nucleo NFC to integrate NFC technology, Nucleo F411RE as the main controller board, a Grove Base Shield to allow the temperature and humidity sensor to work with the 4 digit display LED working, and a UBLOX to allow for wireless GPS tracking using AT&T cellular network.
The integration that had the pair most excited was using sponsored data.
“We are very touchy about the ‘Bring Your Own Device’ movement happening in the work place,” said Penelope Lopez. “We like the idea that AT&T Sponsored Data means a journalist who is covering a new story don’t have to use their own personal data and use their company data instead. It means that person can be more productive and worry less about their personal data being used up. This is even more important in the government role as well. We can’t have people worrying about their personal data at the expense of public safety.”
This wasn’t the pair’s first AT&T Hackathon event.
“We went to our first AT&T hackathon accidentally a year ago,” explained Penelope Lopez. “It took place in Santa Monica. We thought it was just a Meetup User group meeting that would last for an hour, not a 24 hour hackathon.
“I still can’t believe what noobies we were,” added America Lopez. “But luckily we were able to get our first xcode app working in the end and we got an honorable mention award back then. We kept going to more AT&T hacks and kept getting better from then on out.”
America and Penelope Lopez say the #VegasTech community is invited to get involved with their next tech event, called LA Mobile Camp.
“That conference that will take place on January 31, 2015 in Hollywood and we would love to see folks from the Vegas Tech scene attend that and say hi to us,” America Lopez said. “I will be hosting the event with George McKinney. He is a great friend and mentor. We will be covering internet of things workshops to app development workshops. He is our leader of our Los Angeles mobile developer group which has over 800 members.”
“We would love to keep in touch showing you our hacks and crazy conference photos in the near future,” added Penelope Lopez. “We are coming back to Las Vegas for our birthday so we would love to see more of the Vegas Tech scene!”
Connect with America Lopez and Penelope Lopez on Twitter.