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Posted on: 30 August, 2018

Council puts the call out for local innovators to take part in the Capricorn GovHack competition

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Bring out your inner creativity, nerdiness and sense of adventure with GovHack’s annual ‘hackathon’ competition next week, where participants can come up with an array of different ideas using open data.

GovHack is an annual volunteer run international competition and community development event, which brings together technology creatives and innovators from the private, public and government sectors with government data to explore and discover new ways to help create a better society.

In 47 hours hackers form teams, identify problems to solve, build working prototypes, publish their code as open source, and make a short video showing what they did and why. Projects can include web, mobile or augmented reality applications, new analysis or even 3D printed visualisations to understand data and patterns.

Digital economy champion, Councillor Nigel Hutton said Council is putting the call out across the community for team members to register now, as the event is less than two weeks away.

“Council is a proud sponsor of the GovHack 2018 event being held in Rockhampton on Friday, 7 September to Sunday 9 September at the SmartHub 208 Quay Street,” Cr Hutton said.

“All sorts of people join GovHack including entrepreneurs, developers, data analysts, engineers, designers, digital media creators, artists, film makers, story tellers, academics, researchers, youth and civic enthusiasts.

“Previous GovHack entries have included, art, jewellery, a digital sign, a board game, historic film pieces, a virtual reality game, a 3D model, a visualisation of data, an informed article and of course some amazing web apps. The only limit is your imagination.

“It’s a competition, and there are prizes, but GovHack is a friendly creative environment. The best teams have a mix of skills to help contribute to all of the competition elements including skills to story boarding ideas, build prototypes and create a video pitch of the winning idea.”

Last year there were three Capricornia teams, from which emerged two state and two national prize winners.

Local facilitator member Scott Thomas said the Government collects a lot of data for specific purposes, but the data can be used outside of that.

“Governments are actually keen to hear how, thus making open data available to hack,” Mr Thomas said.

“A team with a diverse skill set will help conceptualise and develop an idea more fully which can lead to the concept having real commercial value to a community or a business.

"You've got to experience it to understand it; there is a tremendous feeling of achievement from all involved. This year there is also the chance of a $900 prize from CQUniversity for a Rockhampton, Gladstone or Longreach team. We would like to see accountants, marketers, engineers, students, artist's, even retirees become involved, each can add an element that makes the concept more useful and therefore valuable.”

The Capricorn region’s GovHack event is being held at the Smart Hub, 208 Quay Street, Rockhampton and is sponsored by Livingstone Shire Council, Startup Capricorn, Rockhampton Regional Council and CQUniversity with support from the Queensland Government.

If you are interested in being part of a fantastic event go to https://www.govhack.org for more information or email Scott Thomas at s.thomas2@cqu.edu.au

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