ITC Infotech, a specialized global technology services provider and a fully-owned subsidiary of ITC Ltd, successfully concluded the fourth edition of its flagship annual co-creation and technology innovation platform ‘iTech 2018‘. As part of iTech 2018, ITC Infotech organized a Startup Showcase and a programing Codeathon on December 8~9, 2018, at its Bengaluru headquarters.

The Startup ‘Showcase’ has been designed with the objective of providing innovative technology startups a platform to present their solutions directly to businesses. Shortlisted startups pitched business solutions powered by new age technologies including Artificial Intelligence, Augment Virtual & Mixed Reality, Blockchain and IoT across three industry verticals – Industry 4.0, HealthTech and FinTech. The potential clients for these startups included C level executives from ITC Infotech’s global client base, senior business decision makers, including CIOs from various ITC Ltd., businesses, technology leaders from ITC Infotech’s leading ISV and technology platform partners, and leaders from across ITC Infotech’s various technology LoBs and industry verticals.

Two startups, JioVio and Ethereal Machines won a cash prize of Rs. 2 Lakhs each, and the chance to co-develop their solution with ITC Infotech as a part of its go-to-market strategy. JioVio is a med-tech company focused on providing a positive pregnancy, infant care and parenting experience with its innovation in healthcare technology. Ethereal Machines solves manufacturing problems faced by industries by equipping them with affordable machines. Additionally, this year two startups – Detect Technology and NeoEyed won the special jury award for presenting exemplary solutions.

Ms. Sushma Rajagopalan, MD – ITC Infotech with the winners

The iTech programing Codeathon, an open forum for students, professional developers and early stage technology startups, witnessed some of the sharpest technology minds compete and created code for complex business applications. Participants addressed various challenges included applications to enable labor matching for farmers & farm owners, interactive mobile UI component using platform specific SDKs, offline analytics for mobile applications, offline app sync and process automation.

The Codeathon also had an open innovation category to explore Blockchain solution across Industry 4.0, HealthTech and Fintech. Pulse [formerly known as DocTalk] won the Codeathon challenge and was awarded a cash prize of Rs. 2 Lakhs. The first runner-up was a team from Institute of Technical Education & Research Bhubaneshwar who won a cash prize of Rs. 1 Lakhs and the second runner-up was a team from RR Donnelley who won a cash prize of Rs. 50,000. Team from CMR Institute of Technology and Mangalore Institute of Technology & Engineering won special jury awards. Select Codeathon participants were also offered internship opportunities with ITC Infotech.

The iTech 2018 jury panel consisted of business leaders from ITC Infotech’s clients and platform & ISV partners, along with senior leaders from various divisions of ITC Ltd.

Commenting on the success of iTech 2018, Sushma Rajagopalan, CEO & MD, ITC Infotech, said

As a technology company in the digital era, it is important for us to create an effective eco-system in order to develop innovative and disruptive solutions. Our objective is to collaborate with our employees, with our clients and ISV partners, and the world of startups, to work at the cutting edge of technology and make innovation a way of life at ITC Infotech. iTech is an extension of our philosophy to foster startups in a non-threating environment through partnership with our clients, and the larger ecosystem. Through iTech, we are also creating a platform to enhance the learning experiences of the next generation of technologists.

The fourth edition of iTech 2018 received over 3500 entries for the Codeathon challenge and 32 teams were shortlisted for the final round of development. For Startup Showcase, 15 shortlisted startups were invited to showcase their solutions at the event as a part of the start-up showcase from the 200+ entries that were received.

KG Information Systems Private Limited [KGiSL] in association with UiPath has announced the launch of ThinkAHack, an RPA specific Hackathon event to happen in January 2019. KGiSL, a leading fintech solutions and services provider catering the global capital market and insurance domains has partnered with UiPath, one of the fastest growing enterprise software companies in history backed by over $400 million in funding. ‘ThinkAHack’ will be a 36-hour RPA Hackathon contest involving continuous research and learning which will see a participation of 1000+ college students and technology enthusiasts with different backgrounds across India.

‘ThinkAHack’ encourages the development of cutting-edge technology and aims at talent identification.  The top teams get a total cash price of INR 4,50,000/- and the best 200 participants who demonstrate effective talent and technological innovation will be absorbed into the folds of UiPath and KGiSL. The Winning team gets a cash prize of Rs.2,00,000 and the Runner up team gets Rs. 1,00,000.  The next three top teams get a cash prize of Rs.75,000, Rs.50,000 & Rs.25,000 respectively.

The participants who will register for the hackathon will have to go through a UiPath certificate course which will help them familiarize with the UiPath RPA tool that will be used in the Hackathon. Registered members can participate in the Hackathon only after going through the certificate course. The participants do not have to incur any cost for registration or for the certificate course. Registrations will be live on ThinkAHack.

These participants will meet, form groups, brainstorm, discuss, impart ideas and aid each other in developing innovative and smart projects completely based on Robotic Process Automation.

Speaking on the occasion, Raghu Subramanian, CEO, India, UIPath said

The Hackathon provides a great opportunity for young talents to work with KGiSL and UiPath. ThinkAHack will bring together intelligent minds, who will experience mentorship from Industry Experts specializing in the respective themes/ problem statements. We are planning to facilitate an arena for Hacking, Designing, Tinkering and sharing of ideas aimed at around 1000+ Creative Developers, Designers & Ideators from various backgrounds.

Addressing the gathering Prassadh S Shanmugam, Chief Executive Officer, KGiSL said

RPA has a lot of potential to grow and it is a primary route for organizations to benefit from. We are glad to tie up with UiPath as they deliver the best RPA technology globally and this will provide an opportunity for young talents from India. We will further extend our partnership through the launch of Centre of Excellence [CoE] for Robotic Process Automation [RPA] at the KGiSL campus, Coimbatore.

Dr. Ashok Bakthavathsalam, Managing Director, KGiSL, said

We are happy to launch this hackathon which will help students develop their technological skills by applying their expertise in a creative way and drive innovation. We are also planning to make this an annual program.

During the course of the Hackathon, KGiSL will organize on all aspects of participant management such as, accommodation at the campus, meal, and free kit that includes the Hackathon T-shirt, ID cards, stationery as well as other necessary stuff required for the Hackathon.

Each team will be provided with a system to work on their codes with uninterrupted wi-fi and dedicated mentors will be appointed to clarify any queries of participants before and after registration.

For registrations & other information, please visit ThinkAHack

ITC Infotech, a specialized global technology services provider and a fully-owned subsidiary of ITC Ltd, today announced the fourth edition of its flagship annual Co-creation and Technology Innovation Platform ‘iTech 2018‘. The event will take place at the ITC Infotech corporate headquarters in Bengaluru on 8th and 9th of December, 2018.

Speaking about the initiative, Sushma Rajagopalan, MD & CEO, ITC Infotech said

As a technology company and a differentiator in the digital era, it is imperative for us to collaborate with our employees,  our clients,  global technology platform majors & ISVs, and the world of startups, in order to  identify and brainstorm innovative and fast solutions through  new-age and superior digital technologies. Our flagship annual event iTech promotes this through co-creation, co-innovation and collaboration.

Aimed at boosting digital talent amongst technology enthusiasts and providing a platform for aspiring startups, ITC Infotech will run two parallel tracks, a Startup ‘Showcase’ segment and a programing ‘Codeathon’.

The Startup ‘Showcase’ has been designed with the objective of providing innovative technology startups a platform to present their solutions directly to businesses. ITC Infotech will invite established and early-stage startups to demonstrate solutions leveraging emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Augment Virtual & Mixed Reality, Blockchain, IoT, etc across Industry 4.0, HealthTech and Fintech. ITC Infotech also seeks to partner with relevant startups to help develop the solution, create a joint go-to-market and provide market access.

The Codeathon segment will see teams solving programing challenges that includes – building interactive mobile UI component using platform specific SDK, offline analytics for mobile app, offline app sync, process automation, and labor matching for farming. An open innovation category has also been created for Blockchain Solution across select industry verticals. Three winning teams will get a chance to win a prize money of Rs. 2,00,000, Rs. 1,00,000 and Rs. 50,000.

The event is free and open to all students, professionals, developers and technology startups. To register for iTech 2018, please visit iTech 2018 HomePage.

About iTech 2018

iTech, an ITC Infotech initiative, is an annual technology innovation platform. The platform focuses on leveraging emerging and disruptive technologies to create business-ready solutions, to address some of the most challenging problems faced by the industry.

Organizations, irrespective of the scale and size are always on the lookout for smart people who have the urge to do ‘something different’ & ‘solve large-scale problems’. One way to achieve the same is via Hackathons where participants can collaborate & co-create to solve ‘real-life problems’ by deriving ‘usecases’ that would have a bigger impact. A couple of weeks back, we mentioned about the Mylan Hackathon where the pharmaceutical giant invited students, and professionals to collaborate with the in-house team of experts at Mylan to come up with solutions using technologies like Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, etc. The central theme of the Hackathon was #hackforacause in order to build products that promise ‘Better Health for a Better World’. The two-day hackathon on 13th & 14th October was organized at their Bengaluru office.

Though this was a first of its kind Hackathon by any pharmaceutical company, it received a very good response and the participants came up with very good solutions to the 5 challenges that were posted to them

  1. Simplify Adverse Event reporting for a patient.
  2. Speed up preliminary diagnosis & early cancer detection.
  3. Leverage technology to capture patient treatment outcomes.
  4. Ensure adherence of treatment by a Tuberculosis [TB] patient.
  5. Track Antiretrovirals [ARV] product until it reaches the consumer.

Summary of the overall proceedings of the Mylan 2018 #hackforacause Hackathon

  • More than 550 individuals had registered for the event, from which 62 teams comprising of 252 members were shortlisted for the final challenge that was held on 13th and 14th October 2018.
  • The second and the final day had 45 teams finalizing their solutions and presenting them to the panel of judges. Teams were judged on unique parameters like uniqueness, radical thinking, market effectiveness, etc.
  • Only 10 teams were shortlisted for the final round after the first round of judging, and the 10 finalists had to present their idea to the judges.
  • The innovations and solutions focused on various aspects of technology to solve the five challenges – Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Imaging Science, etc.

Commenting on the initiative, Mylan spokesperson Mr. Rakesh Bamzai, President – India and Emerging Markets said

We are proud to be one of the few pharmaceutical companies in the world to host a hackathon for digital innovation. Initiatives such as these foster engagement and collaboration between students, professionals, and institutions, to develop innovative and cost-effective solutions for real-world health problems and enhance access to affordable medicines. At Mylan, the Hackathon initiative focuses not only on the current challenges in Healthcare but also on developing solutions for the future.

Winners of the Mylan 2018 #hackforacause Hackathon

  • In the Professional hackers’ category, team Smart from Atos won the prize money of Rs. 100,000 for their novel solution to adherence of treatment of Tuberculosis patients.
  • In the Students Category, the team from Sri Sairam Institute of Technology won the prize money of Rs. 100,000 for its solution for traceability of Mylan’s Antiretroviral [ARV] drugs to the end consumer.
  • In the Employees’ categoryteam Shamiroh won the prize money of Rs. 100,000 for its solution to speed up the preliminary diagnosis and early detection of cancer.

One of the members of the winning team Mr. Ganesh Mahadevan said

This event was an exceptional learning platform for me. It allowed me to interact and collaborate with brilliant like-minded innovators to develop solutions that could have a positive impact on patients and the industry. I believe that anyone who wants to find viable solutions for health problems should participate in the Mylan Hackathon.

From the year 2016, Mylan has been organizing Hackathons in India and globally. Since the inception of Mylan Hackathon, the company has been fueling the push for new creative and innovative solutions in the healthcare segment for patients, payers, providers and other healthcare professionals. This year’s hackathon received a very overwhelming response and the participants came up with innovative solutions that have social, as well as business impact.

#HackForaCause coverage on Social Media

The event was covered extensively on major social media platforms namely Facebook and Twitter under #2018MylanHackathon & #hackforacause. With live event updates, netizens & technology enthusiasts could get first-hand information about the Hackathon.

References Mylan 2018 Hackathon, Official Press Release

Machine Learning [ML], Artificial Learning [AL], Cognitive Computing, Deep Learning, Data Analytics, and other emerging technologies are revolutionizing the way businesses operate. These technologies are being used by organizations, across the world not only to solve business-critical problems but to make intelligent & informed decisions. It is ‘sector-agnostic’ and can be applied to any kind of data [structured or unstructured] to arrive at the results. ML and Big Data are being used in manufacturing, e-commerce, banking, traditional retail, etc., but ‘Healthcare’ is one sector where it is being used extensively for not only improving the organization’s products & services but also to improve the quality of diagnosis, predict future events in the patients, etc.

Image Source – HealthCare

Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence in HealthCare

As per a report by ‘Frost and Sullivan’, as far as the healthcare industry is concerned, a huge market expansion is expected in the next couple of years since it has the potential to reduce the costs by half and technologies and platform solutions that promote innovation around care quality, outcomes, and chronic disease management will continue to rise [Source]. Healthcare, as well as traditional pharmaceutical companies, are now able to leverage the power of ‘Patient Data’ to achieve better, as well as quicker outcomes across different levels of the healthcare value chain.

Technology major Microsoft partnered with Apollo Hospitals introduced AI-powered Cardiovascular Disease risk score to predict the risk of Cardiovascular Disease in the Indian Population and many new-age startups are also trying to solve many lingering problems related to healthcare. In a nutshell, ‘healthcare’ is apt for application of ML, Deep Learning, etc. since, these algorithms can be used in understanding & recognizing patterns, which is the most critical factors as far as ‘Patient Diagnosis’ is concerned.

Mylan Hackathon – Opportunity to Collaborate, Innovate and Create

For global pharmaceutical companies, embracing these technologies requires technical, as well as cultural mind shift. ‘Hackathon’ is one mechanism which can be used in order to engage people that are passionate to collaborate, innovate, and co-create in order to provide answers for next-generation healthcare. Mylan, a global pharmaceutical company has an ambitious mission – To provide the world’s 7 billion people access to high-quality medicine and set new standards in healthcare and uses a platform like ‘Hackathon’ to come up innovative solutions. It is one of the few pharmaceutical companies to host Hackathons. For a company like Mylan, Hackathons are more about collaborating with the innovative & creative people [students, professionals, etc.] in order to arrive at solutions that are core to what Mylan does in the future.

Mylan Hackathon is an ideal platform for students, as well as professionals to connect & collaborate with people at Mylan to come up with innovative solutions that address real-world challenges. With events like Hackathons, Mylan wants to come up with new generations of solutions using ML, AI, etc. that are capable of delivering ‘Better Health for a Better World‘. The Hackathon is scheduled on 13th & 14th October in their Bengaluru office.

Mylan Hackathon – Challenges/Tracks for participants

Interested participants have to come up with solutions using can help Mylan unlock these challenges and #hackforacause

  1. Simplify Adverse Event reporting for a patient.
  2. Speed up preliminary diagnosis & early cancer detection.
  3. Leverage technology to capture patient treatment outcomes.
  4. Ensure adherence of treatment by a Tuberculosis [TB] patient.
  5. Track Antiretrovirals [ARV] product until it reaches the consumer.

Interested participants can register online here; the last date for registrations is 7th October, 2018. Creation is always about Teams and the case is no different for Mylan Hackathon. Mylan recommends that you at least have 4 people in the team so that you have the necessary ‘diversification’ in terms of skills and competency. Below are the important deadlines to remember

  • Register for a challenge [registration open till 1900hrs [07:00 PM IST] 7th October, 2018].
  • Design and build [during the event] the project.
  • Document and present a 5-min lightning talk [on the final day of the Hackathon].

Yes, you read it right :). Once your hack is ready, you need to pitch the core USP of the idea to the panel who would be judging the Hackathon. If you are a coder with no customer facing experience, this is your chance to gain that skill by demoing your product using an ‘Elevator Pitch’! The detailed agenda is below

So, apart from hacking for 2 days, networking with other people; you also stand a chance to win prizes. The Winning team would win Rs. 1 Lakh and the Runner’s up team would win Rs. 50,000. There are some interesting giveaways and spot quizzes to keep the participants during the coding sessions. However, it is not always about the prizes; if your hack has path-breaking potential, there is a possibility that it would make way into one of Mylan’s products 🙂

You can find more details about the tools requirements, tips, etc. here. You can also follow social media updates of Mylan Hackathon 2018 here & here. So, what are you waiting for? Mylan Hackathon is an ideal platform where you can showcase your technical and business skills to #hackforacause

To foster technology-led innovation to address societal challenges, Microsoft India is supporting NITI Aayog in MoveHack, a global mobility hackathon inviting solutions, prototypes and ideas to address challenges faced by India in mobility and transportation. As cloud partner for the hackathon, Microsoft will offer Azure cloud credits of up to USD 25,000 to winners who build B2B solutions, in addition to USD 200 worth of Azure credits to every participant. According to NITI Aayog, the hackathon, which was launched on 1st August 2018, has received more than 35,000 registrations so far from over 25 countries.

Additionally, Microsoft Research [MSR] India will consider incubating and offer funding and/or resource support to winners who leverage AI to build their solutions. This will be a part of a new incubation program started by MSR, wherein the organization is working with academia, government and entrepreneurs to help incubate technologies for societal impact, with special emphasis on cloud and AI platforms.  Funding will be determined individually for each project that meets the selection criteria; based on the scope of the project and associated resource requirements.

Speaking on this, Ms. Anna Roy, Adviser, NITI Aayog, said

MoveHack is a unique opportunity for the best minds from across the globe to tackle challenges in mobility and transportation that India offers. We have tied up with Smart Cities, Central and State Ministries to implement the best solutions from this hackathon, in addition to opening up our ecosystem for commercialization of these products / prototypes. MoveHack is a one of its kind challenge to solve for India, and as an extension, solve for the world. We appreciate the partnership with Microsoft.

Commenting on the partnership, Keshav Dhakad, Group Head & Assistant General Counsel, Corporate, External & Legal Affairs [CELA], Microsoft India, said

It is our privilege to be part of MoveHack. The entire country is going through a disruptive phase of digital transformation, with AI being integral to India’s economic and societal progress. Through our partnership with NITI Aayog, we collectively aim to enable the resolution of most pressing social challenges via large scale deployment of cloud & AI led innovations. Our support to MoveHack is part of this collaboration and we believe that solutions incubated through this program will contribute to the nation’s transformation in a meaningful way.

NITI Aayog’s MoveHack is a global mobility hackathon which invites innovative, dynamic and scalable solutions improve to mobility and transportation in India. Open to participants of all nationalities, it is divided into two categories: Just Code It and Just Solve It. While the former is focused at solutions based on innovations in technology/product/software and data analysis, the latter is for innovative business ideas or sustainable solutions to transform mobility infrastructure through technology.

Awards for the hackathon include recognizing the top 10 winners with a total prize of more than INR 2 crore. In addition, what sets this hackathon apart is the unique opportunity it provides for end-to-end integration of solutions in smart cities, States and Central Ministries through commercial implementation. Problem themes include multi-modal commuter mobility in cities, multi-modal freight handling and transportation, road safety and future of mobility, among others.

Creativity and innovation go hand-in-hand with learning at Stonehill International School [SIS]. At Stonehill, they believe in providing newer and enhanced opportunities to their students to be able to integrate technology and innovation with academics, to foster holistic development of each student.

Image Source – Hackathon

Stonehill hosted its first inter-school Hackathon. A ‘Hackathon’ or a ‘Codeathon’ is an event where teams of developers get together to come up with solutions to problems. These solutions include, but are not limited to, robots, machine learning algorithms, mobile and web applications and websites. For the most part, there is only one constraint – time.

Participants of the Stonehill Hackathon included students from six international schools in Bangalore. The participating school included Bangalore international School [BIS], The International School, Bangalore [TISB], Inventure Academy, Neev Academy, Oakridge International School and Indus International School. Twenty-one Secondary School students from SIS also participated in the event. All participants were grouped into teams, with each team comprising of a minimum of two and a maximum of five students.

The participants coded and created solutions to a variety of different challenges ranging from medical technology to natural language interfaces.  The participants had six hours to create solutions by using any programming language of their choice.

The enthusiasm of the students was palpable while students worked on software and hardware based projects. Students worked on a number of projects like an artificial intelligence based facial recognition system, neural networking, computer games using Python, database projects, messaging applications, Arduino/Raspberry Pi and Lego Mindstorms, to name few.

At the end of their allotted six hours, the teams had to present their projects to our panel of judges and the rest of the Hackathon participants. The distinguished panel of judges comprised Mr. Dale Vaz of Amazon India and Mr. Nasser Ebrahim from IBM. Mr. Vaz is Head of Engineering and Chief Technology Officer at Amazon India and Mr. Ebrahim is Senior Technical Mentor in the IBM India Software Lab Machine Learning Hub.

The first prize was won by Team Robomatrix from Indus International School who made a robot meant to carry medicine to a destination. The team was awarded prize money of INR 15, 000/-

The second prize went to Team ETWAS of Oakridge International School that made a home automation system using an artificial intelligence based facial recognition. The team won prize money of INR 10, 000/-

Neev Designers of Neev Academy walked away with the third prize. The team designed a prosthetic arm using Lego EV3 and they won prize money of INR 5000/- The event was an immense success and Stonehill plans to make this an annual event.

HackerEarth, a leader in innovation and talent management, has announced the launch of its first virtual AI hackathon for Alexa. This unique hackathon is aimed at building more engaging skills for Alexa, which is the cloud-based voice service and brain behind Alexa-enabled devices, including the Amazon Echo. 

Image Source – Alexa Hackathon

Registration for the hackathon is open now. The contest will encourage developers to think outside of the traditional application development approach and embrace a voice-first design approach. The participants will be given access to the Alexa Skills Kit, a set of free, self-service, public APIs, that developers can utilize to easily create new experiences for Alexa. The existing architecture allows developers to build applications or skills to enhance the customer experience for its users. The Alexa Skills Kit [ASK] is a useful tool for independent developers, designers and brands to create new ways to engage Alexa.

The hackathon is being conducted keeping in mind that the resulting skills will be useful for the end users. For this reason, it is an open themed hackathon where participants can build any skill that can benefit Alexa customers. Participants are encouraged to create business productivity solutions, cool games, engaging chat bots, smart home applications or anything else that users might be looking for.

To get started, participants can have a look at the existing skills in the Alexa India skills store. There are over 12,000 skills in the store across multiple categories including Business & Finance, Food & Drink, Games, Music & Audio. Over the past few months, Alexa developers from across India added a localized flavor to the skills, enabling customers to listen to devotional songs like Hanuman Chalisa and Gayatri Mantra, find out diverse information ranging from Indian pin codes, Indian presidents to Indian Railways PNR status, or play Indian Tambola, Mahabharatha quiz and Indian GK Quiz. Lifestyle and Entertainment skills like ‘Rock Paper Scissors’, ‘Ganesha Speaks’, ‘Find My Phone’ and ‘Help me Sleep’ are among the most popular skills within Indian customers. This hackathon will give participants an opportunity to work on voice-controlled skills that will make Alexa smarter.

Alexa is currently being used for myriad applications including ordering food and transportation, controlling a smart home, playing music, and much more. Popular services such as Ola, Zomato, Saavn and The Times of India have also identified the potential of voice-enabled customer-interactions early on and provide their services to users through Alexa and Echo devices.

The registration process of this hackathon will conclude on April 1st, 2018. All teams that qualify will be required to submit a working skill based on their idea by April 15th, 2018. All skill submissions that pass the skills qualification process by April 21st, 2018 will get published to the India skill store and will be readily available for users to install on their Alexa app. Teams can also add other language support [e.g. EN-US] to make their skills available to the global skill stores, however participants must register themselves as India vendors and publish their skills to the India store to qualify for the competition.

The name of winning team will be announced on May 1st, 2018. The jury for the hackathon includes senior leadership from Amazon and Alexa Skills business in India. The winning teams will also be awarded cash prizes, devices including Amazon Echo and Amazon Kindle and will also get to meet senior team members from Alexa Skills team in India. 

Sprint, HackerEarth’s innovation management software is a platform to ideate and collaborate on interesting products, solutions and processes. It also helps organizations to crowd source solutions, from internal and external audiences, helping them minimize the time, effort and capital spent on driving innovation. HackerEarth also hosts a global network of top developers which companies and governments can tap into through Sprint, to generate ideas and solutions. Organizations use Sprint to crowd source ideas that help them meet larger goals, which are broken down into distinct themes and specific campaigns.

  • Registration and Idea Submission: 20 February – 1 April 2018
  • Skills submission phase: 2 April – 15 April 2018
  • Skills certification phase on Alexa Skill Store: 16 April – 21 April 2018
  • Judging: 22 April – 28 April 2018
  • Winner announcement: 1 May 2018
About the hackathon
The Alexa hackathon began on Feb 20th and the winners will be announced on May 1st, 2018. The winners will not only win a cash prize and an Echo device, but will also get the opportunity to interact with the senior members of the Alexa Skills team. Currently, close to 2000 participants have already registered for the hackathon. For more information, please visit the Alexa Hackathon site