Electric Sheep In The Running

Posted on Monday, March 24th, 2014

Written by Dan Gillis

School of Computer Science PhD Candidate Jason Ernst, and University of Waterloo Masters student Carlos Saavedra have been identified as finalists in the nationwide Canadian Open Data Experience (CODE) hackathon.

The goal of the CODE hackathon was to build an application/website that would benefit Canadians using the open data sets provided by the Government of Canada. Going by the team name Electric Sheep, Jason and Carlos combined unemployment, labour force, climate, and income tax data, with municipal crime rates, average rental rates, and visible minority population distributions, to create an app called newRoots that links new Canadian immigrants to a list of matching Canadian cities (check out the YouTube video below for further details).

"Many Canadians know that immigrants commonly settle in Toronto because it is the largest, perhaps most well-known city in the country, but perhaps there are better choices." says Ernst.

By blending user responses and priorities with the available data, newRoots is able to match users to cities, and compare their matches against a list of other Canadian cities.

The CODE competition - the largest Canadian hackathon ever - drew over 900 competitors and 290 teams from across the country. The top 15 teams will now compete for the first place position and $25000 in prize money.

You can help support Jason and Carlos by voting for their application here. The team with the most votes will be identified as the fan favourite and awarded $1000. You can review all of the top 15 projects here.

 

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