Hackathon invites teams to create augmented and virtual reality

The Creating Reality Hackathon will host 400 participants from March 12 to 15 who will work in teams. Image from Creating Reality Hackathon Website.

The Creating Reality Hackathon at USC from March 12 to 15 will have the attendees work in interdisciplinary teams to create augmented reality and virtual reality applications. The hackathon is held in collaboration with the USC School of Cinematic Arts, the Iovine and Young Academy and USC Viterbi School of Engineering GamePipe Laboratory.

During the hackathon, 400 participants selected from over 2,000 applicants will compete for cash awards and other prizes. Each team will consist of developers, designers and artists. The judges evaluate each team product based on what they deem how impactful and important.

According to an UploadVR article, “this community’s core purpose is to learn and to deepen our understanding of how immersive technologies can be applied.”

Although USC has hosted other hackathons in the past, this is the first year a hackathon will  feature virtual reality technology. The hackathon was initially started by the Grassroots Developer Education from the Reality Virtually Hackathon at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Media Lab, but was adapted for USC and the Los Angeles community.

The USC GamePipe Laboratory, one of the groups sponsoring event, is led by the program’s founding director and Viterbi professor Mike Zyda. He also started the Joint Advanced Games programs which collaborates with the Iovine and Young Academy.

“[Hackathons] let people take a break from school a little bit and to build something quickly that someday might appear in class,” Zyda said.

Zyda emphasized how hackathons can serve as building blocks for future ideas and companies. The first day of the hackathon will host workshops; the following two days will be dedicated to building the augmented reality and virtual reality technology; and the final day will include judging the project submissions.