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CSUMB students participate in Ideas of March Hackathon

Sunday, CSUMB students squared off in the annual mobile app competition known as “The Ideas of March Hackathon.”

It’s an innovative, intense competition for college students with basic programming skills. More than 50 students worked through the weekend to develop a prototype app for local businesses.

This app-creating competition isn’t just for nerds. Though one team did call itself the “Entreprenerds.”

Professor Miguel Lara said with growing emphasis on tech in business, more students are signing up for this event every year, especially girls.

“The hackathon provides very good experience for the students because it helps them get ready for the job market. When you are working in the job market you have to work under stress, very difficult situations and you have to be very creative to come up with an idea with a solution,” said Lara.

This is the second hackathon for team Space Otter Studios. The four member team said they’ve been running on caffeine energy drinks and no sleep, trying to get their app done.

Their project is geared towards autistic teens. It’s an easy to use DJ app for a company called Autistech.

“So our app allows you to play songs. Transition between them with either a fade in or fade out and it also uses beat detection to try and match up and give you the smoothest possible transition,” said team member Doug Alexander.

“Teams spent long hours getting their apps ready to present to the judges,” Alexander said.

But Alexander said all the stress and sleepless hours were worth it.

“That’s what this whole weekend is about. I learned so so much about developing,” Alexander said.

Lara said these lessons will be very useful once these students graduate into the thriving tech industry.

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