Girls Who Code find algorithm for success

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Senior Ekta Rana and her team from this summer’s Girls Who Code program dominated in three categories at the Women in Tech AT&T Hackathon, placing first overall.

The other team members consisted of Girls Who Code 2015 graduates Kaylyn Torres, Elizaveta Atalig, Leslie Landis, and teaching assistant Nivita Arora.

The team also placed first for the best use of Harman API and second place for best pitch.

“I tried cracking jokes to make our pitch funny,” Ekta commented.

The challenge for this hackathon was to create a website that helps to promote positive social change.

After much deliberation, the group finally decided to build a website that relates the amount of time that you spend in the shower to the gallons of water wasted.

One of the sponsors of the hackathon was a company named Harman, which produces high-end speakers. The coders used Harman’s API, or application program interface, which is a library containing data that one can use in his or her code.

Using this data, Ekta and her team were able to create an algorithm that utilizes music playing from a speaker. The algorithm takes the amount of seconds that the songs have been playing and shows the user how many gallons of water were wasted.

After working on their project from 9 am to 5 pm, the ladies were the third group to present, and thoroughly impressed everyone with what they accomplished.

“I think that the time constraint was a challenge but I felt like we divided the work up really efficiently, so everything came together in the end,” Ekta said.

The team won a total of $1100 in prizes, not including Harman speakers that are each worth up to $650.

AP Computer Science and mathematics teacher Timothy Connor remarked, “Hackathons are a great opportunity for people to get together and share ideas because everyone has a common goal. It’s just a fun way to immerse yourself in the world of computer science.”

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