48 hours @ ArchHacks

A timeline of two WashU Engineering students and how they spent the weekend at a hackathon

• Fall 2017 issue
Photos by Jerry Naunheim
Photos by Jerry Naunheim

ArchHacks 2017

300 students

66 projects

View the list of winners and all the projects at http://archhacks2017.devpost.com


Junior, computer science undergraduate student

Jack's team designed Barcode, a system designed to prevent drivers who have had too much to drink from accessing car keys. The locker-type system would use a built-in ethanol sensor to measure blood alcohol content. If below the legal limit, the locker will unlock, providing access to car keys. But if above the legal limit, the locker will remain locked and will recommend alternative transportation.



6:00 PM
Gave the MLH intro speech (Major League Hacking)

7:30 PM
Went to my friend's birthday dinner (with 3/4 of my team)

10:00 PM
Went to hang out at Michael's apartment

Started brainstorming

2:00 AM
Decided on Barcode

2:15 AM
Started the front-end development

3:18 AM
Finished the CSS

4:48 AM
Finished the HTML

5:00 AM
Went to sleep 



Got lunch with the team

1:00 PM
Started the Javascript

1:01 PM
Realized I dislike Javascript (JS)

1:02 PM
Realized that my team dislikes JS more than I do

1:03 PM
Started the JS, knowing I would do it all

2:07 PM
We got a bunch of cookies (I had at least four)

3:36 PM
Finished all of the log in and out functions

6:00 PM
Dinner break!

6:45 PM
Began merging hardware with software

7:00 PM
Ran into our first bug — our core designs were different

8:00 PM
I won the argument, and made the hardware guy change his code, so I didn't have to change mine

10:00 PM
Actually began the merge

10:01 PM - 5:00 AM
Finished merge



5:34 AM
I put the page on AWS and submitted on devpost

6:22 AM
Went to sleep and woke up just in time for judging!



Master's student in computer science

Cancan's team developed ChouChou, an easy-to-use and inexpensive sensor-application kit that monitors the humidity level of a baby's diaper and sends real-time data to parents' phones so they know when it's time for a change.



4:30 PM
I checked in and grabbed some free stuff. The Android-robot key chain is really cute.

6 PM
Networked with companies about summer intern opportunities

10:30 PM
Went to a workshop about a framework that we finally decided to not use

11 PM
One of my teammates started working on hardware (wiring and stuff). Another teammate started with the front end, and I started with the back-end (database).



12:30 AM
We ran into a fatal issue that the data cannot transfer from the hardware to database through Bluetooth

2:30 AM
Database is set up, front-end view is being built, we just can't get data in

4:00 AM
Went to sleep, desperately 

8:30 AM
Woke up

9 AM
Found an alternate solution to the hardware problem

12:30 PM
After three hours of non-stop coding, I can't continue anymore. I went to get lunch.

5 PM
We got our main page done

8 PM
I've been working on our data visualization codes for two hours. It's time to get my sixth cup of coffee today!

11:45 PM
Our three data visualizations are finally made. The only step left is to integrate them into our application and connect with real-time data

3 AM
Our project requires to nest web application into mobile form. But our CSS file (which controls the UI) keeps running into problems so we spend hours on debugging and adjusting.

5 AM
We finally fixed all bugs.  



9:30 AM
Woke up

10 AM
Waiting at our table to demo for judges

10:45 AM
Closing ceremony

My group didn't win any prize, but I learned so much from the past 40ish hours about coding, teamwork, design concepts and have a better understanding of how much I can accomplish in 40 hours.

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