The Nasa International Space Apps Challenge 2017 will be held in Bangladesh on April 29-30, along with the rest of the world.
Mustafa Jabbar, president of Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS), who is organising the event in the country, made the announcement at a press conference on Saturday.
Any particular person or any team can participate in the hackathon competition to solve different problems, the organisers said at the press event, held at the BASIS office in Dhaka.
This is the third time that the Space Apps hackathon will be held in Bangladesh.
Speaking to reporters, Bangladesh Innovation Forum founder Ariful Hasan Opu said: “Last year, we achieved the third position. This year we are preparing to get to the top in people’s choice category. Every team will be formed with four to seven participants.”
BASIS Director Riadh Hossain said they would arrange campaign programmes in around 100 universities. “At the initial stage, we will select a total of 50 teams. Out of those 50, five teams will be selected for the final event in Dhaka.”
Organisers have requested interested individuals to register for the competition by April 5 at http://studentsforum.basis.org.bd.
Details of the competition can be found at http://spaceappschallenge.org
Asking everyone not to confuse the hackathon with mobile apps development, Ariful said the competition was a useful platform to find talented programmers.
To encourage more women programmers to participate this year, teams with female participants will receive an extra 10% score, he added.
Ariful also clarified that the judgement criteria had been set by Nasa.
However, the American space reasearch programme is not funding the Bangladeshi instalment of the hackathon.
“We are organising this event for our own interest. Our property will remain ours. We will build our capacity using Nasa’s platform,” said BASIS President Mustafa.
Sabur Khan, chairman of Daffodils Group, spoke about the lack of initiative on the organisers’ part in implementing the projects that are developed in hackathons in the country.
Bangladesh needs a result-oriented competition, he added.
“We have set up a lab in Daffodils International University which the Nasa Space Apps winners will get the opportunity to work in. We will also set up a demo lab to provide the participants the real-life experience of working at Nasa,” Sabur said.
Divine IT Ltd founder Iqbal Ahmed Fakhrul Hasan, Independent University faculty member M Ashraful Amin, and Daffodils International University department of software engineering head Dr Tauhid Bhuiya also spoke at the press event.