The Smart Energy App Challenge

admin February 4, 2017

May 30, 2015 @ 8:00 am – May 31, 2015 @ 4:00 pm
ICT Sandbox
Goldberg Computer Science Building
Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS B3H 1W5

The Smart Energy App Challenge (aka hackathon) will happen on May 30 (8:00 am – 9:00 pm) and May 31 (8:00 am – 4:00 pm), 2015, in Halifax and Sydney. There will be $10,000 in cash prizes at stake!

Participants will access a data set from Halifax Solar City to develop an app for the program’s customer base. Solar City is Halifax’s program that finances solar hot water installations for residents.

The data sets will be in CSV format (and possibly JSON). The data consists of about 20 measured sensors in solar thermal systems installed at residences throughout Halifax. The sensors measure temperature, flow rate, and solar flux. Data has been recorded at a one-minute time step over a period of one year at 50 locations. In addition, metadata is provided for each house, including postal code, house size, solar system details, etc.

Semi-finalists will be named on May 31, with winners selected and announced at an awards event on June 24. Semi-finalists will have the opportunity to test and refine their apps with simulated real-time data at NSCC prior to awards night.

Hackathon Eligibility and Rules

  • Participants must be a Nova Scotia resident and over 18 years old.
  • All participants must appear in person. You can come with a team of 2-5 already formed or build a team at the hackathon.
  • You own what you create! All teams retain full ownership of what they have created during the Smart Energy App Challenge.
  • Coding starts at the event – this is what the hackathon is all about! This means all code must be written at the event with the exception of Open Source libraries (and your team should not have written any significant part of those libraries if it is essential).

Judging Criteria

10% Presentation – Did the team clearly communicate their idea? Did they do a good job of turning their idea into an app?
40% Innovation/Impact – Is the app really innovative or a twist on an existing one? Does it have the potential to change user behavior or make an impact on resource use?
25% User Experience – Is the app easy to use? Does it provide good user experience? Does the UI look good?
25% Functionality – Does it work? Is everything fully implemented? Does it offer a lot of functionality or just do one thing? Did the team focus on important features, given the hackathon’s time restrictions?

Locations (Halifax & Sydney)

ICT Sandbox
4th Floor, Goldberg Computer Science Building
Dalhousie University
6050 University Avenue, Halifax

Verschuren Centre
Cape Breton University
1250 Grand Lake Road, Sydney


Participants must register via by 5:00 pm (AST) on May 22. Please include your name, educational institution or company, email address, phone number and address. If you already have a team, remember to list your team members (they must register separately too). Also, be sure to indicate any food allergies or special dietary requirements you have.

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