Nick D'Orazio

Details: 20 Hour Programming Hackathon is Using OpenXC Car API at vCampus Live!

Discussion created by Nick D'Orazio on Nov 17, 2012

If you're looking for details on the vCampus Live! 2012 Programming Hackathon described in this post, here are a few. 


As mentioned before, the theme this year is car data. Participants will have available to them the data made available by the Ford OpenXC hardware-software research platform. Plans are currently to have this data coming to them in real time from a Ford GT driven by a real employee.  The data will of course be stored permanently in the PI System. Here are some values hackathon particpants will be able to read:



Torque at Transmission
























Odometer reading




Accelerator Pedal Position




Fuel Level




Fuel Consumed




Steering Wheel Angle




Ignition status













































The competition is to come up with a killer application that does something useful with this data either while looking at a single car in real-time or after looking at a thousand car fleet over the course of a year. For example, at is a video that demonstrates an application that uses Latitude and Longitude to determine if you will arrive late to your destination and send email to those who may be awaiting your arrival.  Here is an example of an application submitted during the SXSW Eco Hackathon in Austin, Texas on October 4th that “will provide direct, metric-based, advice to drivers to increase their understanding of driving habits and suggest ways to improve their fuel economy. It will give them a way of judging their fuel consumption on trips, the cost of that fuel consumption, and the cost of alternative methods of transportation.”




As you might imagine, these efforts to provide the nation’s drivers with better ways to manage their fuel consumption is currently of tremendous national interest. The U.S. Department of Energy is involved in a variety of efforts in the upcoming months to promote new uses of data to reduce energy use. Support for the vCampus Live! hackathon is being provided by the Energy Department, and they will be highlighting the winners. We have also learned from Ian Kalin, the Director of the Energy Data Initiative at the Energy Department, that shortly after the hackathon on December 1st they will be announcing a $50,000 Vehicle Data Challenge that involves “new technologies that improve vehicle efficiency while also protecting against distracted driving.”  Kalin said he would welcome participants of the vCampus Live! hackathon using their energy data expertise to bring great ideas into the $50,000 challenge. For more information on the Vehicle Data Challenge follow @ProjectOpenData on Twitter.


One last note: The Programming Hackathon runs from 1 p.m. Wednesday to 9 a.m. Thursday, with breaks (if you want) for food.Then the Day 1 events start. Those events end at 6:00 p.m. At 6:15 the Geek Night Extravaganza starts, and ends at 10 p.m. People have asked if there will be time for sleep and as you can see, you've got 15 minutes between 6:00 and 6:15 p.m. Thursday.


(Cross posted from OSIsoft Users Community.)