February 25-26, 2017
Behrakis Grand Hall
Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA


Time What Where
February 25 Saturday
8:30am - 10:00am Doors open, participant check-in Behrakis Grand Hall
9:00am - 10:00am Team Building (For those without a team) Creese Quiet Lounge
10:00am - 11:00am Codefest Kick-Off
  • Keynote Speaker - • Kisha Hortman Hawthorne, Sr. Vice President & Chief Information Officer, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • API Demos
  • Codefest Rules and Prizes
Behrakis Grand Hall
12:00pm Lunch (Sponsored by Wawa) Behrakis Grand Hall
1:00pm Deadline for teams to register on Devpost to notify judges of problem statement and official team members
2:00pm Codefest Healthcare Hacking Workshop Commuter Lounge
2:00pm Customer Validation, presented by the Close School of Entrepreneurship Private Dining Room 008
2:30pm "Damn, I Wish I Knew That,"" presented by HomeNet Auto Commuter Lounge
3:00pm Microsoft Workshop – Best Microsoft Hack Commuter Lounge
4:00pm Codefest Workshop – "Get Involved" learn how to become a part of the Codefest student organizing Team Private Dining Room 008
5:30pm - 7:00pm Dinner Behrakis Grand Hall
6:00pm Codefest Workshop – "How to Win Codefest!" learn from past Codefest winners Private Dining Room 008
7:00pm Philly Codefest Game Night Commuter Lounge
8:00pm "Who wants to work at the iCommons?", Drexel Student Workers Commuter Lounge
9:00pm Late Night Snack Behrakis Grand Hall
10:00pm Philly Codefest Game Night Commuter Lounge
February 26 Sunday
12:00am - 12:00pm Coding Continues
7:30am Breakfast Behrakis Grand Hall
12:00pm Coding Ends!
12:00pm Lunch & Demo Fair Setup
1:00pm - 3:30pm Philly Codefest Demo Fair & Judging Behrakis Grand Hall
3:30pm - 4:00pm Judging - Final Presentation Setup Behrakis Grand Hall
4:00pm - 5:30pm Final Presentations & Awards Ceremony Behrakis Grand Hall

About Philly Codefest

What we do

Philly Codefest brings together a diverse and inclusive group of students and professionals to develop innovative solutions to solve real world challenges.

Why we do it

In addition to attempting to make the world a better place through technology, we work to forge and foster lasting relationships among students, professionals, tech leaders, start-ups and corporations.

How we do it

We are designed to build upon the already strong tech community in the Greater Philadelphia area. Philly Codefest is currently organized as an annual software and hardware hackathon where people of all backgrounds and skill levels have the opportunity to participate, learn and compete. It is hosted by the College of Computing & Informatics at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Last Year's Winners

Good Civilianship

Grand Prize, Student Grand Prize, Best User Interface - $5,500

The Change in PI

Dean's Innovation Award - $500


Best Hardware Hack - $500

Keynote Speaker

Kisha Hortman Hawthorne, MHA, MBA, FACHE

Full bio...

Important Information


Code of Conduct

All participants must respect the Philly Codefest Code of Conduct

Drexel University and PhillyCodefest Policies

Codefest Attendees MUST wear their braclet at all times.

No alcohol permitted on Codefest premises (Behrakis Grand Hall, Creese Student Center).

No smoking permitted in the Behrakis Grand Hall, Creese Student Center. Smoking is permitted on Chestnut Street (away from the building entrance).

Per Drexel University policy, the possession and/or use of narcotics or drugs other than those medically prescribed, properly used, properly secured, and in the original container (hereafter: drugs), is prohibited while on Drexel University property.

Anyone found in violation of these policies will be disqualified from Philly Codefest.

In the event of a Medical Emergency: Please notify a staff member IMMEDIATELY


Users must behave responsibly with respect to the Drexel Network at all times.

Users must behave responsibly with respect to the Drexel Network at all times.

Users must respect the integrity and the security of the Drexel Network.

Users must behave in a manner consistent with Drexel’s mission and comply with all applicable laws, regulations, and Drexel policies.

Users must be considerate of the needs of other Users by making every reasonable effort not to impede the ability of others to usethe Drexel Network and show restraint in the consumption of shared resources.

Users must respect the rights and property of others, including privacy, confidentiality and intellectual property.

Activities specifically prohibited are enumerated completely at http://www.drexel.edu/it/about/policies/


Registering on Devpost

Philly Codefest 2017 is using Devpost to showcase all your projects and support the judging.

You need to register on Devpost and submit your projects before the deadline (Sunday, Feb 26, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. EST), both at this link: http://philly-codefest-2017.devpost.com/

You must have EVERY person on your team go to the link above and click Register to compete in Philly Codefest 2017 (i.e, you must all create Devpost accounts.)

To enter your project, one person from each team will Enter a Submission (which is a button you’ll see after you Register). Where it asks you to add your teammates’ email addresses, make sure to use the same ones they used to create their Devpost accounts. Project submissions must be created in Devpost no later than 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb 25.

Submit early and include as much information as you can, so you won’t be rushed toward the end. And remember, you can keep updating your project until the deadline.

Drexel Escort Service

All Codefest attendees are urged to utilize Drexel’s escort service through the Department of Public Safety, especially if you are walking around campus late at night. The service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Please contact a staff member to schedule this service.

Food And Drink

All Codefest meals are provided free of charge. Coffee and refreshments will be available at all times during the Codefest. Please refer to the agenda for meal times. Please notify a staff member ASAP of any food allergies.


What's the theme and focus of the challenge?

The primary focus and theme for this year’s Philly Codefest is to develop amazing tools or approaches that enable access and use of data in areas of national and local (Philadelphia region) priority, such as health, hospital and patient care; government and civic solutions; media and digital arts; data science and visualization; and cybersecurity, among others.

The format offers opportunity to pursue multiple challenges with separate prizes for the winners in different aspects of innovation.

Is there a required team size?
Teams must have at least 3 members and no more than 6. If your team does not have 3 members stop by the team building session on Saturday morning or try connecting with someone here on Devpost.
Where can I Park?
The event will be held at Behrakis Grand Hall, 3210 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Parking info can be found here. There is plenty of street parking around the venue (3hr parking, but kiosks are around so you can pay with cash or credit card). Our garage is located about 2 blocks away at 34th and Ludlow St.
What are the judging criteria? How will my product be scored?
How well does your solution meet well-defined user needs? How well have you integrated subject matter knowledge and available data sets in creating your solution? How innovative is your idea? How much did you develop during the event? (We encourage you to use legacy codebases, libraries, APIs, and databases; using an honor system tells us what you produced during the event). How readily might your solution be implemented? Litmus test: will someone pay you to use it, or use it even if you give it away free? Why? You need to convince the judges not only how cool your technology is, but also how well it addresses the problem, how likely it is to be used and how viable it is as a product in the market place. If possible, the judges would love to see a live demo!
Is there anything I need to know about the judging process?
  • The initial round of judging will be conducted in a “Science Fair” style. Following completion of coding, teams will be given time to set up their exhibition tables before judging begins.
  • All projects must be submitted to Devpost no later than 1pm Saturday February 25th, 2017
  • Teams will then be visited by judges and given 3 minutes to demo their projects.
  • Final judging for teams moving forward from the “Science Fair” will consist of a timed presentation in front of a final judging panel.  Slides and demos can be used during the final presentations.
How are teams formed?
We expect the majority of participants might enter the competition as part of a team they have already assembled before the event. If you would like to join a team or recruit members for your team we encourage you to signup on our DEVPOST site. Here you will be able to network with other like minded individuals and potentially form teams before the event begins. There will also be an opportunity Saturday morning to network with others looking to form a team.
What are the rules regarding third-party APIs?
None. Just acknowledge their use.
Can my team meet prior to the event to start discussions?
We encourage team members to start talking amongst themselves, at least by the week leading up to the event to get a head start. But we ask that if you do any coding prior to the start of the event Saturday morning, you disclose this when you present your project to the judges. Many participants find it helpful to assign roles/responsibilities to team members prior to the event.
Do I have to code on site or can I code at a location of my choosing?
All coding must be done on site (please) unless you have extraordinary circumstances. We will have multiple mentors and sponsors on site for the duration of the event to offer assistance in a variety of areas, we encourage you to take advantage of their expertise. If you work off site, you will be at a distinct disadvantage.


Interested in sponsoring Philly Codefest? Take a look at our sponsorship information

The College of Computing & Informatics (CCI) is the focal point for Drexel's computing and information research and education. The College has considerable depth and breadth to address the opportunities and challenges of the information age. The College serves as a central hub for multi-disciplinary computing activities, which applications and utility span across a wide range of academic domains. The faculty and students extend Drexel's long-standing strengths in computing and informatics disciplines, delivering recognition as a world-class academic unit for both research and educational programs. CCI combines the strengths and assets of research, undergraduate, graduate, and professional computing and informatics programs, with special commitment to helping grow Drexel’s “Innovation Neighborhood” as a launching pad for innovative technology entrepreneurs.

HomeNet Automotive creates ground breaking technology solutions to solve the problems of the automotive industry. For nearly 20 years, we have simplified vehicle merchandising for dealers, national auto groups, and OEM partners. We are a proud member of that larger Cox Automotive family, which includes Autotrader, Kelley Blue Book, and Manheim. This global network of brands provides end-to-end automotive solutions and provides unique collaboration opportunities between a deep bench of talented companies.

JPMorgan Chase - JPMorgan Chase, a leading global financial services firm, is reinventing the way the industry does business and leading the way through technology. With an annual investment of over $9 billion in technology and 40,000 technologists, technology and innovation are critical to delivering to over 40 million digital customers and managing $2.5 trillion in assets. Visit jpmorganchase.com/techcareers to learn more.

UC Science Center - Located in the heart of uCity Square, the Science Center is a mission-driven nonprofit organization that catalyzes and connects innovation to entrepreneurship and technology commercialization. For 50+ years, the Science Center has supported startups, research, and economic development in the life sciences, healthcare, physical sciences, and emerging technology sectors. As a result, graduate firms and current residents of the Science Center’s incubator support one out of every 100 jobs in the Greater Philadelphia region and drive $13 billion in economic activity in the region annually. By providing resources and programming for any stage of a business’s lifecycle, the Science Center helps scientists, entrepreneurs and innovators take their concepts from idea to IPO – and beyond. For more information about the Science Center, go to www.sciencecenter.org.

Wawa's Information Technology team is a major part of the magic that makes Wawa a true trendsetter in the Retail Industry. Your Voice Matters - being considered for this challenging and dynamic opportunity will provide the opportunity to become part of the Wawa team and our “hands on” environment working towards solutions on a daily basis. Wawa values its customers and our IT team enables them to fully embrace the Wawa offering by providing digital screens, personalized ordering, a mobile application, rewards program, in-store wifi, and the point-of-sale. Our team is empowered to drive innovation which includes data analytics, fuel and supply chain systems, maintenance management (including IoT technologies), and people related systems. In addition, we manage the designing and operating of the infrastructure and security needed to support all technology working as a “well-oiled machine.”

L3 Technologies – Communication Systems East (L3 CS-East) is a recognized global leader in the design, development and production of secure communication systems and products supporting mission-critical space, ground, air and naval operations. At L3 CS-East employees have the opportunity to make a significant impact on our business and the world around us while thriving in an environment that continually fosters innovation, growth and career development. We are committed to providing best-in-class solutions to our customers with the highest level of integrity, excellence and uncompromised quality in everything we do.

The Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship at Drexel University believes that entrepreneurship is not just a technical process of launching new companies. Rather, it is a set of personal and professional skills that foster the pursuit of innovation in business, personal and career contexts. Students from every college and school at Drexel are able to connect through the Close School to curricular, extracurricular and experiential programs that support entrepreneurial efforts. Classes such as our popular Entrepreneurship Bootcamp class (ENTP T280) provide every student at Drexel with the opportunity to learn how to become more entrepreneurial.

Accelerate Health is an virtual academy dedicated to improve the quality of life and health of people around the world by education, collaboration, strategy, and infrastructure for health care entrepreneurs and change makers.

GitHub is a web-based Git or version control repository and Internet hosting service. It offers all of the distributed version control and source code management (SCM) functionality of Git as well as adding its own features. It provides access control and several collaboration features such as bug tracking, feature requests, task management, and wikis for every project.

GitHub offers both plans for private and free repositories on the same account which are commonly used to host open-source software projects. As of April 2016, GitHub reports having more than 14 million users and more than 35 million repositories, making it the largest host of source code in the world.

Caviar is an easy way to order meals from popular local restaurants across the U.S. Customers can order ahead on the web, or instantly from Caviar’s free mobile app for iOS and Android. Caviar provides customers with quick, reliable delivery service no matter where they are.

Sponsor Philly Codefest

Join the network of support at Philly Codefest 2017 to help deliver new approaches, prototypes and tools that unlock the power of code, data and hardware for innovative solutions. Your support will help propel this combined effort of corporations, educational and professional institutions and individuals to harvest technological creativity in the Philly region and beyond.

Codefest also gives you the opportunity to publicize your product/API to the most tech-savvy students in the Philadelphia area. As a sponsor you will be able to demo your products to participants and watch the creative ways in which hackers use your services.

Philly Codefest is unique in that it is open not only to students but also professionals throughout the Philadelphia and Mid-Atlantic regions.

Three Benefits of Sponsorship:

  • Recruiting - Hackathons are one of today’s most powerful recruiting tools, as they give you access to some of the best and brightest students around. Sponsors will have the opportunity for direct recruiting access to Codefest participants. You’ll be able to meet with and contact participants during and after the event.
  • Brand Exposure - Get your swag and name out to the world. Sponsoring Codefest will allow you to show off your company’s technical side and increase your exposure to current and future tech leaders across the Philadelphia area.
  • Increasing engagement with their API/developer ecosystem - Helping hackers use your products/API’s will allow you to build lasting relationships with hackers. Participants will know your brand and associate it with the helpful team behind it. Sponsoring Codefest will allow for real-time observation of your potential clients/employees testing out your product. Offering a prize for best use of your product is also a great idea from both a branding and product perspective.

All Things Codefest
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