Social Media Week started on a high note this week with a two-day hackathon hosted in partnership with the City of Joburg and JoziHub on Monday and Tuesday.

The hackthon, titled “A Better Johannesburg, Developer Challenge 2014“, brought together 50 developers, designers and creatives who have a passion to see Johannesburg shine to come together and create web and mobile apps that will benefit the citizens of the city and make it a better place to live, work and socialize in.

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The judges for the day tasked with picking the winners were Christo Doherty, head of Digital Arts at The Wits School of Arts, Adrian Schofield, manager at the Applied Research Unit at Johannesburg Centre for Software Engineering and Derrick Kotze is CEO of mLab Southern Africa.

Individuals formed teams and got right to work coming up with a concept they had to present. Each team was encouraged (but not limited) to create an app under the following categories:

  • Public transport
  • Service delivery and utilities
  • Healthcare
  • Community engagement
  • Arts and culture and more

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The team that walked away with the R20 000 first prize is the Thuso medicine delivery app team. The R3 500 second prize went to the Easy Travel bus and taxi app and the Impilo health app got the R1 500 third prize.

Each app was judged according to:

  • Impact on users and problem-solving
  • Portability
  • Sustainability
  • Innovation
  • Distribution
  • Solid foundations
  • Open source

SONY DSCOn why they chose Thuso as the winners, the judges said “We thought there was a lot of potential for Thuso. We really like the idea of green bicycles, we think it would add a lot of value in communities, it speaks to income opportunities for youth nand it’s an easy system to implement.”

All three of the winners will receive further assistance and work with Social Media Week and Digisense to make their apps a reality.