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Winning team of the hackathon

LU Arts and LSU Enterprise run successful first Hackathon

In February, LU Arts and LSU Enterprise combined for Loughborough University’s very first creative Hackathon at the Students’ Union.

Hackathons originated from coding, where teams of coders lock themselves in a space for multiple days, to challenge themselves and compete with other teams, to see who can come up with the best products starting from scratch.

This creative hackathon focused on interdisciplinary teamwork and shortened the time students were given to come up with an idea. However, certain essential elements were kept, including having pizza for fuel and the competitive nature of the event.

Students from different schools were divided into 10 teams and pitched their ideas to the panel of judges. They were marked on their creativity, business value and presentations. Whilst everyone performed exceptionally, especially under such time constraints, the following teams were named the top three:

  • Winners: Fresh Socks
  • Second Place: Fantastic 3
  • Third Place: Terminal Two

Team Fresh Socks chose the challenge of imagining the future of art and came up with the app, Flair. It recognizes backgrounds based on location, colour and texture and replaces it with an associated work of art pulled from an online collection. Users can easily remove backgrounds and select subjects due to readily available technology and share their 'works of art' with others. The art comes with 'gallery style' descriptions which allow users to learn more about art history. 

The Fantastic 3 came up with a new idea for a collaborative space – human energy pods in James France. The pedal powered bays with exercise bikes and treadmills allow for quick charging of drained resources in an open space. Sustainability is considered with reusable materials from arts courses and textiles, filling soft furnishings and beanbags in an open breakout space. Whiteboards and gallery walls would be installed all the way around allowing for quick ideas and collaboration, plus cork boards for ideas on display which University staff can see and take on board.

Terminal Two chose to also design a collaborative space with a rain collection hub on campus. They suggested that rain collection could power a whole collaborative campus unit within a greenhouse style space. An open roof would funnel in water like the Jewel in Singapore airport. Six rooms would surround it, allowing for collaboration and conferences. Berry bushes surrounding the building would allow for foraging, considering the benefit of wellbeing and Fruit Routes success. Blenders would also be installed in rooms to encourage fruit consumption. 

Nathan Chan, Enterprise Section Chair said: “It was great working with LU Arts and the event was a massive success! So many students took part and the fact that we had high-quality ideas and presentations from the participants was fantastic. The feedback we received from students was overwhelmingly positive, and we look forward to more events like this.”

More information on the Hackathon is available here.