For its 3rd edition, CBC/Radio-Canada hosted their annual hackathon and welcomed skilled tech enthusiasts in their Montreal and Toronto headquarters over the weekend of February 2nd, 2019. This event took part simultaneously in person at both metropoles, and online from Vancouver, Edmonton, and Ottawa, using Canada’s two official languages, English and French. Amongst the 414 applicants, 16 teams were chosen to battled it out, and craft as well as present their best working prototype to a board of jury in a friendly, cooperative format.
Content personalization and engagement
The 414 participants’ mission this year was to create a new digital product or service that would improve CBC/Radio-Canada’s relationship with their audiences, and make sure users receive the right information that matters for them. The participating teams needed to come up with a basic solution for that problem statement 3 months prior to the event and then were given 40 hours to work on their projects. After this time crunch, they then had to deposit their prototypes on the Agorize platform, and pitch their final solutions in front of jury members. The aim of this event was to help CBC/Radio-Canada maintain their digital leadership, as well as support them in their goal of creating content and products that offered intuitive and relevant experiences for users.
Meet the judges
A jury of professionals, CBC/Radio-Canada experts and prominent figures from the digital industry were in studio to evaluate the teams’ projects. On the Montreal side, the panel was composed of Maxime St-Pierre, Executive Director of the Digital Services department of Radio-Canada, and Brian Cann, Regional Director of Microsoft for Eastern Canada. In Toronto, the jury members were Soo Kim, Executive Director of Media Operations at CBC, Alex Coqueiro, Public Sector Solutions Architect Manager for Amazon Web Services, and last but not least Michele Romanow, “Dragon”, CBC Dragons’ Den as well as Co-Founder & President of Clearbanc.
The winning projects
On top of being an incredible learning and networking opportunity for participants, the 2019 CBC, Make it Personal! Hackathon gave out 5 different awards to congratulate teams for their effort and outstanding work.
CEO Outstanding Award: Value of $2,000
Yellowknife young professionals Megan Cooper, Brad Poulter and David Wasylciw, from the team True North, won the first prize with their tool meant to make radio in the North more shareable.
Radio-Canada Médias Numériques Award: Xbox + $1,000
This reward was attributed to the team Low Five, composed of Vincent Bélanger, William Fortin, Joël Auchu, Guillaume Simard and Jonathan Rochette, for their browser extension which integrated CBC/Radio-Canada content into social media, mainly Facebook and Twitter.
CBC Digital Product Award: PlayStation 4 + $1,000
For their prototype AllNews able to recommend podcasts using relevant segments for each individual, Margie Mccloskey, Zi kai Chen, Charlotte Baker, Jonathan Smith, and Angela Krone from the team DysonSphere (University of Waterloo) were recompensed with the CBC award.
Student Award: AWS Workshop
The team Crimson Solutions, constituted of Grace Ma (University of Waterloo), Welson Wei (Western University), Haoyang Ding (University of Toronto), Steven Jung and Frank Liu (Ryerson University) won a seminar administrate by experts at Amazon Web Services for their weighted keyword analytics system, which could also send data to an employee dashboard to view and analyze trends.
Participation Award: Microsoft Xbox One
Participant Dafne Delgado, from team Cohort 13, got lucky this weekend and won an Xbox One offered by Microsoft via a draw made in a studio.
Access to the backstage
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