The Libraries co-organizes NASA's Space Apps Challenge

The Libraries and Animo Labs join the American Spaces Philippines-U.S. Embassy in the Philippines as co-organizers of  NASA's Space Apps Challenge this year. This is an exciting, collaborative scientific exploration of the global hackathon, as we pair data from NASA with problem solvers across the globe. The activity was held from 19-21 October 2018 at De La Salle University (The Learning Commons, 6th floor and Verdure, 4th floor).

The program aims to create an opportunity for mission schools, DLSP students, and students from other institutions to participate in an international competition, bringing Filipino developers and innovators at the global front.

The first day was intended to brief the participants of the key challenges of NASA Space Apps as they engage via videoconferencing with Dr. Patricia Jacobberger (NASA Headquarters, D.C.) and Michael Carroll (Urban Engine/U.S. Space and Rocket Center, Huntsville, Alabama). Another set of virtual panel experts, Dr. Anondo Mukherjee, U.S. Embassy Science Fellow, University of Colorado Boulder and Sarah Marie Hartman, U.S. Fulbright Fellow, University of Delaware, enlightened students about key issues about the Earth. In addition, data bootcamp stardust stations were prepared in the afternoon that showed a variety of topics e.g. applications of data, demonstration of simple hardware projects and teaching of hackathon skills. Mentors were also around to provide guidance to attendees for the duration of the sessions.

Deputy Chief of Mission John Law of the US Embassy, PLDT Enterprise Core Business Research and Development head Leandro Santos, Deputy Executive Director Engr. Raul Sabularse of DOST-PLDT Enterprise Core Business Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD), Senior Planning Officer Yvette Cabrera of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), and DLSU Animo Labs Executive Director Federico Gonzalez served as jurors for the hackathon.

Successful teams who won special awards were:
  • Team Cosmos X – Technological Institute of the Philippines (Best Use of Hardware)
  • Team DIRA – AMA, SORA and Stella Maris College  (Most Inspirational)
  • Team Nyarligans – De La Salle University (Best Use of Data)
  • Team Technobyte – University of Santo Tomas (Best Mission Concept)
  • Team Uroboros – Malabon National Highschool (Galactic Impact) 

The teams who will proceed to the global competition to be judged by NASA are the following:
  • Team iNON – ABS-CBN and Globe Telecoms
  • Team Space Force – University of Asia and the Pacific 

Team iNON represented by IT professionals Revbrain G. Martin, Marie Jeddah Legaspi, and Julius Czar Torreda created ISDApp, a collection of scientific data to provide fishermen with useful information to aid in their livelihood. This included hourly weather updates, sea conditions and local announcements in the absence of smartphones and internet connection.

Team Space Force students Jeorge Loui P. Delfin, Bluen Ginez, Samuel Jose, Rainier Garcia Narboneta, and Eugenio Emmanuel A. Araullo created Project Vita, a mobile application and website that could enable users to contact each other even when telecoms break down during disasters. It is also an emergency kit checklist system which can help people prepare for emergency and disaster situations.

The NASA Space Apps Challenge calls on the creativity of coders, scientists, designers, storytellers, makers, builders, and technologists to use NASA’s data to create solutions that address key challenges on Earth and in space. They are encouraging young minds to put their talent together for an improved future for all. To Infinity and Beyond ...