The Saudi Arabia’s first ever Hajj Hackathon has ended, the techies are looked for high-tech solutions for preventing the repetition of the earlier calamities that had occurred in the yearly Hajj pilgrimage.
The hackathon programmers participated sleep deprived, getting energy from caffeine, adrenaline and pizza engaged in finding fixes to the Hajj-related emergencies.
In Jeddah thousands of experts and students have taken part in the marathon Saudi contest—a coding festival before the Hajj—which is to occur later this month.
The expected number of Hajj pilgrims to Makkah this year is more than two million, which would definitely be a logistical challenge for the Saudi authorities, with massive crowds stuffing into comparatively small holy places.
The participants all worked for finding solutions to prevent any future calamities.
A group of young women all in their twenties belonging to different countries including—Saudi Arabia, Eritrea and Yemen, covered in their veils from head to toe, are working on designing an app for the paramedics to reach the people in need of medical assistance quickly using the geo-tracking technology.
If more than one emergency arises at once, the women are hopeful that their application would assist in prioritising the ones which are more in need.
Two Pakistani professionals have grouped up with two East Asian students for the development of “virtual leash” application for finding the lost relatives in the crowd by using Bluetooth wristbands.
Four men of Saudi Arabia are working on the sensors for garbage bins that would notify the cleaners when they are full, this would prevent any hygiene issues.
Another group of Saudi women are writing algorithms and programming codes on a whiteboard for designing an application to assist the non-Arabic speakers translate instructions into multiple languages without any internet connection.
Around three thousand programmers—who ate and slept at the venue—the organisers claim that Kingdom has broken the Guinness World Record for the largest number of participants at any hackathon.
The solutions being designed by the programmers are still untested. The event ended on Friday and offered cash prizes of nearly two million riyals allocated as an invention marathon by the event organisers.
Nouf al-Rakan—the chief executive of the Saudi Federation for Cyber Security and Programming—which organised and managed the event said that they aim towards the upgradation of the Hajj experience for all the pilgrims from across the globe.
She further added that this hackathon would enrich the Hajj experience and would provide many ideas and solutions that could actually be adapted and invested in.