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GHC India Day 2: Diving into Technical Tracks

After an exciting first day of GHC India (GHCI) 2015, attendees dove into technical topics, covering issues like data science and machine learning, emerging technologies, innovations born in India and systems engineering. It was also the first day of the student career fair, and the final round of the Tech For Good Hackathon.

Again, the sessions captured how India’s female technologist population can embrace the theme of #OurTimeToLead, learn from their peers and pass on their knowledge to the next generation.

Here are some of the highlights from Day 2 of GHCI.

Made in India

One of the most fascinating sessions of the day was Aadhaar – An Indigenous Solution to an Indian Challenge. Aadhaar is a 12-digit unique identity number assigned to each Indian resident, and the program is considered the world’s largest national identification number project.

Asha Krishnan, Manager of State Projects for UIDAI, the Indian government agency in charge of Aadhaar, discussed the many benefits of the program. Aadhaar is a powerful tool for extending access to bank accounts, SIM cards and other government programs to huge swaths of the Indian population who couldn’t previously tap into these resources for lack of having proof of identity or proof or address.

Asha also discussed the security challenges that come with assigning identity numbers to a billion plus Indian residents. Fortunately, Aadhar brings powerful authentication tools to verify transactions such as pension transfers and ration cards, preventing fraud.

Student Career Fair

Another major highlight was the student career fair, which attracted attendees interested in career opportunities with top employers throughout the day.

The career fair provides an important opportunity for students to practice and hone their networking and interview skills. Often, GHCI is the first exposure attendees have to approach and pursue new career opportunities.

Tech For Good Hackathon Results are In!

ghc-day-1-hackathonFinally, after months of preparation and countless hours spent coding their apps, the final 11 teams participating in the Tech for Good Hackathon, GHCI’s exclusive women-only hackathon, presented their complete projects to a panel of judges.

The teams worked on five different projects for 6 non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The winning team, Five Star from Chennai, couldn’t attend in person due to the devastating floods affecting Tamil Nadu. The group, which demonstrated its project via video, developed an app for the NGO Antardrishti, which aims to create an inclusive society with equal and full participation of blind or visually impaired people. The team developed an app that connects visually impaired people with volunteers across the country.

The runners up included Bin Watch from Bangalore, a combination of hardware and software that provides real-time information about when local garbage bins need to be emptied, drastically cutting the costs of garbage collection.

The second runner-up was IsecG7 from Bangalore, a team that developed a logistics, inventory and basic accounting app for the NGO Neev, which runs a project for women to make bags out of waste newspaper, providing women with a livelihood and replacing plastic bags in Shivpuri and Delhi.

To stay updated on all the action happening at GHCI 2015, check back for another recap post tomorrow. And don’t forget to follow the Anita Borg Institute on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for live updates and photos from the event.