The SAS 2022 Hackathon was launched and got underway last week, where the South African Hackathon team of eight members have taken their place alongside 69 others worldwide in identifying a real-world problem that can be overcome through the novel application of technology.
Led by research developer Michael Austin, the South African Hackathon team from Dake Solutions – one of SAS’s local strategic partners – had been tasked with identifying and challenging a use case and technology that can create social value.
Speaking after the launch event, Kelly Lu, lead at Advanced Analytics and Artificial Intelligence, SAS in South Africa, said: “The SAS Hackathon is a great opportunity to put an innovative idea to the test. Not only are participants provided with software like the SAS Viya platform to build their use case, but they are also given access to SAS training content. Teams will have everything they need to turn their ideas into reality, while also exploring entrepreneurial approaches and networking with fellow innovators.”
Drawing together teams from many sectors including banking, energy, life sciences, insurance and telecoms, this year’s Hackathon entries are dominated by the healthcare space, which shows that there is a global focus on societal health and wellbeing.
Similarly, the proposal from Dake Solutions aims to solve real-world problems of identifying various lung diseases and mitigating the associated risks that these bring. The ability to identify these diseases early and accurately will not only potentially save lives but enhance the industries where lung diseases can impact productivity negatively.
Technologies at the South African team’s disposal include the SAS cloud environment on Microsoft Azure, the full SAS visual data science and decisioning stack, open source R and Python.
An adjudication process featuring a jury of experts will determine the finalists in May 2022, based on how well the solution has addressed the use of technology, the process followed and implemented, and the value brought to society through application of the solution. The winning solutions for each category track will be announced in September 2022 at SAS Explore and will receive ongoing support from SAS to be brought to market in viable commercialised form.