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Sunday, December 16 , 2018, 12:37 am | Fair 44º


SBCC Team Takes Top Honors at SBHacks Technology Hackathon

Members of the two SBCC teams who won awards at the recent SB Hackathon include, front row from left, Nidhal Selmi, Colin Allen, Zack Feinn and Russ Fenenga; back row from left, Ashley Cortez, John Michael Bachmann, Tyler Hall and Jon Steelsmith.
Members of the two SBCC teams who won awards at the recent SB Hackathon include, front row from left, Nidhal Selmi, Colin Allen, Zack Feinn and Russ Fenenga; back row from left, Ashley Cortez, John Michael Bachmann, Tyler Hall and Jon Steelsmith. (SBCC photo)

A team of computer students from Santa Barbara City College took the top award at SBHacks, a 36-hour technology innovation “hackathon” held recently at UC Santa Barbara.

The event drew approximately 550 college students or “hackers” from 15 colleges and universities. Teams worked to create a wide range of creative project using the most current technology available which then were judged by employees from local technology companies.

The SBCC team WiPi was named “Best Overall Hack” team. Team members include Colin Allen, John Michael Bachmann, Tyler Hall and Jon Steelsmith. Their project Eco Node is an environmentally aware mesh network with sensors and software designed to improve soil, water and power resource efficiency.

For their efforts, team WiPi earned the grand prize from Citrix of two Oculus Rifts (virtual reality headsets) and two licenses for virtual reality development kits. They also each received round trips with all expenses paid to HackNTU, the largest international hackathon in Taiwan. Team WiPi has a strong track record of past success also having won top awards at CalHacks Berkeley and HackCC in Santa Monica.

SBCC’s Event Hype team won “Best iOS Hack App” at the hackathon. Team members included Ashley Cortez, Zack Feinn, Russ Fenenga and Nidhal Selmi. Their project EventHype is an iPhone application that connects attendees at local public events. Events are created and updated in real time with user comments and an integrated voting system which offers a better way to organize data.

Team Event Hype each won automatic admissions to the highly competitive MakeSchool Summer Academy in Silicon Valley, including a scholarship toward the academy fees. Members of this team also successfully competed in other events such as the Association for Computing Machinery-International Collegiate Programming Contest.

“These team members represent the caliber of all our students attending Santa Barbara City College,” SBCC President Lori Gaskin said. “Their technical skills, creativity and competitiveness have put them in the top tier of computer technology students at both two-year and four-year colleges and universities. On behalf of the college, I commend them on their outstanding performances.”

— Joan Galvan is a public information officer for SBCC.

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