PCH ‘hackathon’ among imminent events aiming to stimulate innovation

Participants will be invited to pitch ideas to the crowd and attract attendees to form design and production teams

Phridge Team: winners of the 2014 PCH Hardware Hackathon. photograph: alan betson

Phridge Team: winners of the 2014 PCH Hardware Hackathon. photograph: alan betson

 

Product development and supply chain management firm PCH International will run a third hardware “hackathon” in Dublin this week.

Participants will be invited to pitch ideas to the crowd and attract attendees to form design and production teams. The teams will then have less than 54 hours to make a prototype of a connected device.

New elements have been added to this week’s event, including five-minute pitch-off sessions for established start-ups (non-hackathon participants) to pitch for a prize of €1000 funding, and panel discussions.

How big companies are adapting to hardware disruption, the challenges and opportunities associated with developing a hardware start-up, the crucial role of design in the success of new products and the global hardware revolution will be among the topics up for discussion. Speakers will include Drop chief operations officer Jack Phelan, LoveandRobots.com co-founder Emer O’Daly and Sarah McDonald, director country IT lead, MSD.

PCH founder and chief executive Liam Casey said hackathons are today’s garages where companies get their start.

“Ireland’s hardware start-up scene is really gaining ground and we want to harness some of that energy in this,” he added.

He said the hackathon is aimed at makers, designers, engineers, technology-enthusiasts, marketers, designers and anyone interested in the idea of bringing products to life.

DCU Innovation Campus executive director Ronan Furlong said events such as the hackathon will propel Ireland and its maker community in the burgeoning internet of things space.

During the hackathon, participants will have access to developer kits, prototyping tools, 3D printers, soldering irons and a laser cutter.

3XE Digital conference

The theme of the event is content and social media marketing, and the speakers will include Facebook UK head of e-commerce James Carr, LinkedIn content marketing lead (EMEA) Jon Lombardo, and Google EMEA brand lead Graham Barry.

Women in technology

Ms Ward said organisations and managers need to give women more challenges and opportunities, and women need to stop saying no when those chances come along.

“Women have what it takes to positively influence change in their organisations but they need to be given a voice on the board or a turn at the microphone. Sadly, they’re often invisible at conferences, on boards and in the media,” she said.