Lextech News

Lextech Winter Hackathon 2014

March 4, 2014

  • Tom Caprel Tom Caprel

Last week, over 20 Lextech employees gathered in our Chicago office to kick off the first Lextech Hackathon of 2014. This year, the focus was on connecting mobile to the “internet of things” and creating new and innovative ways for mobile to benefit the enterprise. The team brought in a ton of toys for us to play with, including drones, Sphero, iBeacons, Google Glass, Lexray, Xbox controllers, Arduino, a MakerBot 3D printer, and many more. Our team spent over 45 hours working on 12 projects in our spacious team room.


After the dust settled, we presented our amazing results! Here’s what came out of this year’s Hackathon:

Sumo Balls (Watch the Presentation)
Using the Sphero Robotic Ball, a team created a mobile game that simulates a “Sumo Wrestling” competition! Placing the balls next to each other, both users start the app, each ball is assigned a color (which is seen on both the app and projected inside the ball), and the game begins! Points are scored by which Sphero is knocked out of the “ring” first, and collisions are highlighted in the app UI for extra action!

Sphero XDrive (Watch the Presentation)
Why not drive a Sphero with an Xbox 360 Controller? Using the Windows SKD, one team created a way to steer their Sphero with the controller, and mapped special commands like a 180 degree spin, or a quick pivot, to the triggers!

iBeacon Tech Support (Watch the Presentation)
This team focused on automating tech support feedback by using iBeacons. A tech support person would have an iBeacon on their person, and when they departed a location that requested tech support (presumably after assisting them), the app would send a feedback/further requests form automatically to the user(s) to be filled out.

MyAlibi Mobile App (Watch the Presentation)
Ever run into a situation where you had to explain an mystery injury or awkward situation after a night of debauchery? Well this team focused on creating an iOS app for just that! By selecting from a list of excuses, both pre-selected and user submitted, you no longer have to come up with one yourself! Future versions may include a rating system, for both usefulness and riskiness of excuses!

Billion Dollar Apps iBook
Lextech Marketing Director Adrienne took on submitting Lextech CEO Alex Bratton’s new book Billion Dollar Apps as an iBook on the Apple App Store! Check out the first chapter of his new book here: Billion Dollar Apps: How To Find and Implement A Winning Mobile Strategy

OfficeBeacon (Watch the Presentation)
One team created a new way to interact with iBeacons by using them for device triangulation and location services. Users devices can also display a list of iBeacons around them, and their proximity to them.

LexCam (Watch the Presentation)
Spearheaded by one of our remote team members, LexCam uses a mobile device’s camera to stream live video over the internet! Similar to Lextech’s Appcast.it product, the app allows real-time video over a mobile connection. This team also connected their app to Lextech’s Lexray surveillance system!

Lextech iBeacon Welcome Sign (Watch the Presentation)
Using iBeacons and a large monitor, this team created a way for visitors and employees to be welcomed to the office in real time! A background app running on the phone uses an iBeacon and Gravatar to display pictures of users currently in it’s vicinity.

LexQuest (Watch the Presentation)
Lexquest uses Bluetooth connections to create an new MMO environment right in the office! Each phone connects to others near it running the LexQuest app and displays the avatar of the other users in a shared realm! Hack, slash, and fireball your co-workers for victory!

Loyalty Card (Watch the Presentation)
One team created a digital loyalty card app for iOS devices using a secure on-screen stamp that allows businesses to add points to the users cards. The app includes a wallet for your cards, a map of store locations, and other customizable loyalty services for users.

GlassCast/GlassRay (Watch the Presentation)
One team took on the difficult task of streaming video from Google Glass! This team used Glass’s on-board internet connection to stream video to a Chrome Cast connected to a TV! They also connected the streaming video to Lextech’s Lexray surveillance system!

Shanky Bird (See the game at Itch.io)
Taking a page from the now-defunct (albeit infamous) iOS game Flappy Bird, one team created a Leap Motion enabled computer game! Using the Leap Motion controller, users can flap, dodge, and ‘shank’ their way out of prison! But be careful, the bars will stop you cold.