Hacking Jozi's Wits University

Digital Content

The last weekend of August 2015 saw winners of the Wits Student #AppChallenge announced, followed by entertainment from House Afrika, as part of the Fak'ugesi Festival.

A total of 16 ideas were presented to a judging panel lead by Prof. Barry Dwolatzky, Director of JCSE at Wits University & Founder of Tshimologong Precinct.

As opposed to the traditional Hackathon model, a significant amount of emphasis was placed on Idea Validation and ensuring that the Apps that were presented promise sustainable value creation.

Part of the judging involved investigating whether the App had a demand from a compelling amount of students. The winners received an Apple iPad Air sponsored by BBD and membership to the Wits Digital Innovation Zone.

The Top Three Winners presented the following ideas:

Gig Guide A team of 4 Wits students built a prototype of a platform that notifies students of upcoming events depending on the student’s registered interests. The App also allows Student Clubs and Societies to submit events that they would like to host and it digitizes the existing Approval Process, thereby making the process of legitimizing events faster.

I'm Interested is an App providing students with an interface to a closed Wits students' community. Students of similar interests or looking for others with specific skills can then connect through the App.

Wits Locate allows Wits students to determine their location based on uploaded photos. The user can then enter a destination to which the App can direct them. The App aims to provide this functionality even within buildings. Wits Locate
Spot Prizes

There were also different categories of awards for some of the teams.

The Wits Meal App took home the Most Innovative Idea Award. The Meal App allows students to search for available meals of the day from restaurants in and around Wits campuses. Innovator, Emily Mguni says “A lot of students expressed that they would also like to place orders via the App and I’ll be looking into that going forward”

IQMates won the Ready For Market Award. This App already has an Android App on the Google Play Store and has a fully fledged website which can be viewed here IQ Mates

The Most Required Idea Award was awarded to Bus Control. The team was made up of students who are directly affected by the fact that some Wits buses arrive overloaded at certain bus station. This occasionally causes stampedes leading the team to develop a solution prototype. The App requires students to check-in at bus stations and thereby providing bus drivers real-time data to determine the amount of buses to supply at different bus stations.

Three Awards were given to individuals with the Best Presentations: Need A Book (An App that allows Wits students to trade second hand books), Wits Happening (a planner/calendar that aggregates all your Wits activities) and 24.
Source: iafrikan.com 2 September 2015