TrueHack #1

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Raluca Lehadus, Engineering lead
20 Sep 2017
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As the team expanded in the past six months, we decided to organise our first internal hackathon — it has proven to be an immense success. Our team members contributed with fresh, interesting ideas either based on our current product — the Data API, or by enhancing various internal components or by conducting market analysis.

Goals of the Hackathon

  • Coding, designing, sketching a solution in 36 hours;

  • Foster innovative ideas of any magnitude and across different teams;

  • Opportunity to experiment with something new, improve something that existed, or simply learn new skills;

  • Present and articulate the hack project to the rest of the team.

For the 36 hours, the only sounds you could hear in our office were the clicking keys of mechanical keyboards.

The competitiveness of the event became apparent from the early moments of the hackathon when at 10am we had a full house, and everyone was working hard to shape their ideas. Even if the rules did not specify whether people could work individually or in teams, everyone had taken the decision to explore their own imagination and come up with an original, fun and creative project that would win the epic 1st prize. The only distraction from bringing ideas to life over the two days was the scent of food being served throughout the day.

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Food & Prizes: Happy hackers

The hacks

  • Easy Hodl — An application that helps users invest affordable amounts in cryptocurrencies by rounding each transaction in their personal accounts;

  • International — Implemented our first international bank integration;

  • Functional Alerting in Real Time — Learnt how F.A.R.T (“Functional Alerting in Real Time”) can be useful to find bugs and monitor our infrastructure in real time;

  • TrueLayer + Alexa — Ask Alexa about your real time balance and transactions;

  • OSX + Electron — An application that displays balance and transactions using Electron;

  • Market Analysis — Learnt more about local and international companies operating in the FinTech Space;

  • Regulatory Hacks — Explored new product ideas built on our Data API and new European regulation;

  • Metrics — All sorts of different metrics and analysis to help us understand the viability of our API.

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The tech

The languages and technology we used for the hacks:

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Wrapping up: 3h 58m to go

And the winner is …

For the die-hard amongst us, the hackathon was a great excuse to camp in the office for 36h. With plenty of food and beverages, many of our team left either in the early hours of the morning for a short nap or they decided to camp out in the office and make use of the hammocks in the RocketSpace sleep room. Everyone worked hard and passionately to bring their ideas to life in such a short span of time.

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The projects were introduced to the entire team at the end of a long 36-hour sprint. Nine projects were submitted and each one of them was different, fresh, and interesting to learn about; each was developed independent of each other, and it was exciting to hear what people were secretly working on for the preceding two days.

The 1st prize was won by “Easy Hodl”, an application that showed the value of transactional data to help the user save and invest in cryptocurrencies in a frictionless way.

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1st price winner: Easy Hodl

All in all, the hackathon has been a great success; one that we thoroughly enjoyed. The cool prizes were added incentive!

What’s next?

We’re delighted to co-sponsor CurrencyCloud’s API Hackathon Challenge on 29 September, where you can implement YOUR cool product and idea using TrueLayer! We look forward to seeing you there.

If you want to hear more about our hackathon projects or about TrueLayer in general, feel free to email me.

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