The 2023 CERN Webfest hackathon gave rise to five amazing projects, within which 19 bright young people worked together to develop useful apps that support science, research, and education. Ideas covered in this year's competition included web applications that facilitate the research process, quiz-like educational games, and useful upgrades to already-existing apps.
Projects were carefully assessed by a distinguished panel of four judges, and two teams were named the winners. “All projects were fascinating and creative, so it was a hard call–especially the two winning projects, SciFeed and CERNbot, that were both exceptionally impressive and well-executed,” says Alberto Di Meglio, the head of IT Innovation and a jury member.
In only two days, participants had to come up with an idea for the project, assemble a team, describe the project’s purpose, identify its technical requirements, and work towards developing a fully-functioning app. “Having only 48 hours to finish a project forces you to come up with practical solutions quickly, which puts your problem-solving skills to the test,” says Angelo Petrellese, a member of the CERNbot team.
The hackathon not only offers participants the chance to develop their project ideas but also fosters networking and collaboration. More than 10 nationalities took part in this year's Webfest, with people from various cultural backgrounds coming together to create something unique, exchange knowledge, and learn from each other.
The projects were judged based on their originality, level of technical sophistication, and potential for positive social impact. The highest score for the technical solution went to one of the winning teams–CERNbot, which is an interactive mobile application game that allows you to handle CERN robots in Augmented Reality.
On the other hand, the SciFeed project, in addition to being very strong technically, was also rated highly for the educational value it provides for the wider community. “I am genuinely grateful for the recognition our idea received from the judges. Winning will always be a cherished memory that we will share as a team, but more importantly, it will serve as a driving force, motivating us to delve deeper into our concept and explore its potential for further development,” says Viona Cafo, a SciFeed member.
If you are interested in finding out more about 2023 CERN Webfest projects, visit the Webfest website.