In today’s digital age, the challenge is connecting it all. In an effort to help solve the problem, the City of Mississauga reached out to hackers, designers, programmers and citizens for their inspiration, ideas and talents to build experiences in engaging citizens, strengthening communities and improving quality of life within the city.
The city partnered with ICUBE University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM), Sheridan College, Research Innovation Commercialization (RIC) Centre, SOTI Inc. and Esri Canada to host the second annual one-day hack event, “Tech and the City,” on Oct. 21. This year’s theme, “Building a Connected and Engaged City,” underlined Mississauga’s vision as a “Smart City.”
Fourteen teams, made of up to five individuals, were tasked with conceptualizing, designing and presenting a digital experience to create solutions for their choice of one of three challenge sets presented at the competition – connecting with the environment, supporting business to business connections, or connecting Mississauga communities. After working and refining their projects, each team had the opportunity to pitch their ideas to a panel of judges. One team for each category was selected as the winner.
The winning teams will be enrolled in a sponsored accelerator program where their ideas can be brought to reality. As well, each winning team member took home a new “Google Home” unit.
The winners, shown in the photo, are Team Jazz Hands, for creating a platform for businesses to engage in a direct line of communications with other businesses; Sauga City Hack Squad, for an app to provide Mississauga residents with a fun, interactive and digital experience by incentivizing the improvement of air quality through a points system; and Team Null, for a ‘Short Message Service’ (SMS) app to give city residents a way to connect with businesses without the use of Wi-Fi or mobile data plan.