Hackathon Invades Indiana State Capitol

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (March 15, 2016) – The Indy Chamber today announced the winners of its #INCapitolHack hackathon in coordination with the Indiana Auditor of State and the Legislative Services Agency.

#INCapitolHack, the first installment of the 2016 Hack Indiana Series powered by the Indy Chamber, was held February 26-27 at Indiana Government Center in downtown Indianapolis. Participants, including coders and developers, were given 24 hours to develop and pitch innovative solutions to unique data challenges put forth by government entities. Finalists were then selected to continue working on their applications for an additional week.

“Indy is quickly becoming a hub for young, innovative tech talent and we have witnessed this growth first hand through events like our Hack Indiana Series,” said Michael Huber, Indy Chamber president and CEO. “As we work to support and attract companies in this industry, we must also continue to cultivate this developing talent pool, making the Indy metro a true competitor for investment and growth.”

For the #INCapitolHack challenge, the office of the Indiana Auditor of State put forth a data-driven challenge regarding the public-facing organization of its travel expense data. Shake & Bake, the two-person team of Brian Norris and John Botta, utilized the Tableau Public platform to embed interactive dashboards of datasets within the state’s website structure.

Their solution allows for flexibility and scalability should the State Auditor’s office provide larger datasets for other purposes in the future.  The final product gives viewers of all skill levels the ability to dig deep within public expense information and pinpoint where transactions occurred and what vendors were utilized.

“The best ideas are often found outside of government,” said State Auditor Suzanne Crouch. “As we embrace technology and move toward a 21st Century Government, I’m thrilled we’ve been able to engage local tech talent in the process of modernizing the Indiana Transparency Portal, making it even more transparent, accountable, efficient and interactive.”

The second #INCapitolHack challenge proposed by Indiana’s Legislative Services Agency opened public datasets to developers with the purpose of making bill tracking more transparent to the general public.

The two-person team of 2EZ Development, Kenneth Winner and Jacob Van Brunt, created Pocket IGA, a smartphone app that allows users to save current bills and receive notifications when those bills progress through the Indiana General Assembly. Bills were also categorized based on topic for quick reference.

Winners of #INCapitolHack were selected by a panel of judges consisting of representatives from both government entities who presented challenges, as well as representatives of the Indiana Office of Technology.

About Brian Scott

I play on the radio from 7 am -1 pm weekdays on 98.9 WYRZ and WYRZ.org. Follow me on twitter @WYRZBrianScott or e-mail me at brian@wyrz.org.

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