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Indego2Go Takes Top Prize at Third Annual Philly Codefest

Winning project helps Philadelphians locate bike share kiosks and determine safer biking routes

Philly Codefest 2015
Indego2Go team members received the grand prize and Dean's Award for Innovation at the third annual Philly Codefest on Feb. 22 (left to right: Andy Obusek, Samantha Provenza, Rebecca Nock, Thomas Peduto).

February 25, 2015

A software application to improve safety and navigation for cyclists in Philadelphia won the grand prize and Dean’s Innovation Award at the third annual Philly Codefest, Drexel University College of Computing & Informatics’ two-day coding competition to transform data into real-world solutions.

Over 175 software and hardware developers and designers, professionals, educators, students and entrepreneurs attended the event (Feb. 20-22), which took place in Behrakis Grand Hall in the Creese Student Center on Drexel’s University City Campus in Philadelphia.

Participants formed a total of 29 teams to produce new software applications (using anonymized data) and hardware devices aimed at tackling a variety of national and local challenges in domain areas such as community health, transportation, energy, agriculture, art and information technology, among others.

As Philly Codefest was designated as an official CodeAcross 2015 site for a second consecutive year, participants were also encouraged to produce applications within in the 2015 CodeAcross challenge, “Principles of 21st Century Government,” in competition for a Philly Codefest CodeAcross prize. CodeAcross is a weekend of civic hacking events hosted by nodes of the Code for America network in over 35 international cities during the weekend of Feb. 20-22, 2015. Coinciding with International Open Data Day, the goal of CodeAcross is to activate the Code for America network and inspire residents everywhere to get actively involved in their community.

The Feb. 21 kick-off ceremony featured keynote speakers Abhiroop Das (’14), Philly Codefest co-founder and associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC; and LeBow College of Business and Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship student Christopher Gray, who recently received funding for his company, Scholly, on ABC’s "Shark Tank."

Philly Codefest 2015 sponsors included: Independence Blue Cross, Microsoft, Drexel University Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship, AWeber,WebLinc , Point.io, InSource,GoEmerchant, InSource, Caviar,Sungard Consulting Services, GlobalSubmit, Arkieva and ic@3401.

A panel of judges that included both venture capitalists and respected members of Philadelphia’s tech community reviewed the projects. Seven teams took home awards from Philly Codefest, which were presented after demos on Sunday, Feb. 22:

Grand Prize (Overall Best Project; $3,000) & the Dean’s Award for Innovation ($750)
Team: Indego2Go
Team Members: Andy Obusek, Samantha Provenza, Rebecca Nock, Thomas Peduto, Mike Stanziano
Project Description: “Big things are happening in Philadelphia public transit. There are station and concourse renovations going on in Center city and new payment technologies being installed by SEPTA on all vehicles, but no change is bigger for our city's health, mobility and well-being than the unveiling of our very own Bike Share! Indego2Go will put Philly back at the forefront of bikeable cities with a state-of-the-art system, a system which deserves state-of-the-art software support. That is what we set out to create in Indego2Go. Using our app, bike share riders will be able to find the closest bike rack, plot a course towards their destination (depositing the bike in a close by rack along the way), and get there quickly and safely. Users may reserve bikes ahead of time pay using Apple Pay while tracking important health stats along the way! Our users will compete against friends, family, and other Philadelphians on our global and friends-only leaderboards. Indego2Go is not only an app though. We are providing an accessible REST API containing data we have logged and data we will collect for the benefit of all Philadelphians. This will allow our brotherly developers to contribute even more to the community and their city. After all, we have only gotten this far by standing on the shoulders of the giants before us. Ideally, we would also love to allow our users to opt to share their data with their health insurance provider, providing proof of an active lifestyle in exchange for better personalized rates!”

Majority Student Team ($750) & Women in Technology Award ($500)
Team: CCI Innovators
Team Members: Tamanna Chawla, Tarika Chawla, Yi Lao
Project Description: “Drexel C-ri is a voice recognition application, similar to Apple Siri, designed for Drexel students to answer general questions, easily accessible Drexel Shuttle schedule, latest events happening at Drexel, on-campus navigation, and other important information regarding Drexel. One of the other major problems that this application resolves for the Drexel students is navigation of Drexel buildings, for example, from Curtis Hall to UC 151. Every university uses codes for buildings on campus. Drexel course schedules also have the location of the classes as SC 306 etc. Someone said: ‘I was 20 min late to my class because I couldn’t find the building named SC 306 on the first day of the term.’ Yes, it is a problem in Drexel and pretty much in every major university. This application will also be customizable for other bigger organizations, especially, universities according to their resources. This application provides students with innovative way to interact with Drexel resources and reduces unnecessary customer service queries.”

Venture Capitalist’s Choice ($500)
Team: Food Taste
Team Members: Devin McGinty, David Yoon, Ashish Timilsina, Nehal Joshi
Project Description: “FoodTaste is a web app that brings restaurant dining into the 21st century. There are two main sides of FoodTaste: public and management. The public side allows customers to view and order food directly on their phones. The app brings up a menu that can be customized to the user's needs (including preferences and dietary restrictions). The customer is then able to order and pay for food in a sit-down restaurant directly on their app. The management side allows a restaurant to easily track business analytics. A restaurant manager can see visualizations of order frequency and details to help manage table turnover, inventory, and table scheduling. The restaurant can also get immediate feedback from customers via surveys on the public app. The goal of FoodTaste is to give every restaurant the analytic capabilities of a large-scale retail corporation. This will help the restaurant improve efficiency, productivity and the dining experience as a whole.”

Best Hardware Hack ($500)
Team: TeamAI
Team Members: Charles Hill, Grant Hubbell, Avery McLocklin
Project Description: "Using a system of Raspberry Pis, Team AI is attempting to create an artificial intelligence that thinks like a person. This AI could conceivably be applied to any purpose; whatever a person can do, it can learn."

Best Microsoft Hack (Three Dell Venue 8 Pro Tablets)
Team: Groupster
Team Members: Ethan Keiser, Romi Amoudi, Gianni Renzi, Peter Schuette, Justin Mariano, Robyn Freedman
Project Description: “Our project is to develop a mobile application. It is a matching service for same-sex groups of friends catered toward meeting new people to hang out with. You form a crew of 2-4 people on the app, and then begin to match with other crews of the same size based on location and gender preference. A major problem this application solves is safety. The largest dating mobile application on the market right now is Tinder, which is a matching service for individuals. Many women do not feel comfortable meeting with men that they match on Tinder due to personal safety concerns. By incorporating groups of friends into the mix, this concern is reduced significantly.”

CodeAcross Prize ($500)
Team: Servo
Team Members: Amber Heilman, Brandon Him, Halima Olapade, Matt Barnett
Project Description: “The fire department of Philadelphia is in dire need of EMTs. According to a federal standard, it is expected that an ambulance arrive on scene within 5 minutes of dispatch. This only happens 45% of the time in Philadelphia. Our application will show the areas with the greatest need for more paramedics and where to dispatch more resources with the recently acquired budget of $2.4 million.”

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