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Agro-innovative games

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Association AgTech Ukraine invites to the All-Ukrainian Hakaton agrarian innovations. March 24-26, Microsoft’s Kiev office will host the largest event that will bring together IT developers and landowners. Participants will have the opportunity to present their own IT-solutions for the agricultural sector completely free of charge and receive powerful feedback from experts.

Previous hackathon participants received a strong impetus to the world of business and high technology, as well as the opportunity to take part in a wide variety of conferences and congresses. They write about them, they talk about them, they are interested in them. By the way, participation in the hackathon guarantees that the AgTech Ukraine association will not overlook your startup. Hackathon is a step into a big life for any promising startup.

As part of AgTech, events take place, there are platforms on which you can equip demo-stands, there are pages in social networks, a website, electronic newsletters of information digests and announcements. The association creates and promotes content - all without investment for start-up AgTech members. For hackathon members, pre-registration is required.

Territory of communication

A hackathon is primarily a community building in which people dealing with agrarian innovations can work together. People come here not only to win prizes, but also to simply exchange ideas, find like-minded people or potential investors. Thus, the traffic infrastructure is being developed and the prerequisites for successful follow-up activities are being created. Already this year there were teams that formed on the past hackathon.

Not only specialists from agro or ayti came to the hackathon, there were also teams consisting of students and very young guys. For two days they worked on their ideas with mentors and other participants. The main goal of such work is not the final product, but work on the concept, improvement of the idea, its refinement. Several participants came up with the same idea, but after discussions within the hackathon, they completely changed its concept.

An important part of the hackathon format are mentors - experienced professionals, as well as major market players who helped teams put their ideas into practice. Any team could ask them for help or advice.

Territory testing

Some of the participants came to the project by an already established team, some already had a finished project. For such teams, a hackathon is a platform for getting opinions from mentors and participants in the agro and IT business, to hear criticism or about other development opportunities for their development. One of these teams - Urban Green House, which presented the draft urban greenhouses. According to the developer, he did not find anything like this in the available sources of information, therefore he applied for a patent. His idea combines three well-known technologies - vertical cultivation, cultivation by the method of aeroponics (free placement of roots in the air and moistening with aerosols with mineral salts) and a conveyor belt.

The project assumes that the greenhouse will be an attractive architectural form, to occupy a small area, to have high efficiency in terms of yield and economic feasibility. This greenhouse allows you to achieve maximum plant density by placing them on moving closed conveyors. A person will not need to walk in a greenhouse - the conveyor will deliver the plant to certain zones where treatment, watering, feeding and harvesting will be carried out.

Another team arrived at the event with a finished project - a hydroponic installation EBA-PRO. A feature of the development is that the installation is designed in the form of a drum, which saves the occupied space, also the source of illumination is located in the center of the drum, so the light evenly covers the entire area. The entire substrate is soaked in a small tank, this allows you to achieve savings in nutrient solution. And using the process of orbitropism (artificial gravity) allows to increase the growth rate of plants by 1.5 times. According to the authors, changing the vector of gravity acting on the plant contributes to the secretion of the hormone auxin - growth stimulant.

The project has already been developed, full-sized laboratory facilities have been created for the design research and software, a prototype has been created for industrial production. The organizers noted the promising development and awarded the project with a certificate that provides marketing support from the Association AgTech Ukraine.

Emerald Forest - Popularize Tree Growing

Another project that did not win, but was impressed by the organizers is the Emerald Forest platform. This idea did not have a technological solution, but the approach itself is interesting. The platform includes several parts: gamification, a system for creating parks where individual trees will be planted, an educational program for children and a training program for farms and farms that will show what commercial value of planting certain trees. The main idea of ​​the project assumes that a person can plant a tree and follow its development on an interactive map using a special application. The gaming moment is that the user grows a tree and receives bonuses that can be monetized afterwards.

Territory of winners

Those teams that are seriously tuned to victory were immediately noticeable. They were grouped in convenient premises, actively communicated with mentors, and also sought cooperation with other participants. The teams were formed in the course of the hackathon, complemented by specialists who eliminated the weak points of the project. At the exit - the idea grows into real development.

LYNX - smart apiary

Control of the apiary is an urgent task, because sometimes hives are taken out to the field and it is difficult to keep track of them. LYNX project is able to solve this problem. The general principle of operation is based on the transfer of data from hives to a centralized server, and from it to a web page or a beekeeper’s mobile application. Sensors are installed on the hives, which record the main characteristics: weight, microclimate indicators, number of bees. This data will be transmitted to the server. Before the Hackathon, only the web interface was implemented, and the “iron” part was developed directly at the event. So far, developers are not focused on industrial options, but the system is scaled in this version. The estimated cost of equipping one hive with this technology is $ 30. It is expensive for the average beekeeper, so mentors advise authors to think about cheaper development.

The project, which prepared a team of students from NAU took third place.

allfields.gov.ua - map of fields of Ukraine

The implementation of the idea that took the second place will allow you to create maps of all fields of Ukraine. Users will be able to see which crops are grown in specific areas. In addition, the resource will be the history of crop rotation, the cost of rent, information about the owner of the land, and about who actually uses it. This will make it possible to develop solutions for rotating machinery in the fields, and distributors will know which regions are better to supply certain aggregates or seeds.

Water Cloud - money from the air

The developers of the project Water Cloud offer to make money out of thin air. And they have already begun to implement the venture, earning a first prize on the hackathon. There are many regions that are experiencing a shortage of fresh water. This problem can be solved by the creation of a Water Cloud aggregate. Water production is carried out by changing the temperature of the air flow. Air enters the unit, cools and evaporates, which is collected in a special container. The device consists of a power supply system, ventilation, cooling, drainage and control. Productivity and power of the unit is regulated by means of the software. The winners of the project promise that their unit will allow to receive water 4 times cheaper than it costs in areas with water shortages, and the balance in the ecosystem will not be disturbed. Recently, a bottle of Fontus Airo, which uses a similar technology, went on sale.

At the final pitching of the All-Ukrainian Hakaton of Agrarian Innovation 2017, 18 projects were presented. Most of them are interesting and promising, but there are also unfinished ones. There were also participants who simply could not profitably present their idea. All teams have time to improve their projects, because the main indicator is not a victory in the hackathon, but the creation of a development that will interest investors.

Mentor impressions

Artem Belenkov, founder of SmartFarming and Znaideno

The first time I was a mentor, so I can not compare with the previous hackathons, but I liked what I saw at the current one. I saw a lot of good ideas, but I got the impression that some teams did not manage to work through everything in two days. Not all participants used feedback, for example, Live.Fields - guys with a good technical background, but did not listen to advice in the context of a project idea. And in general, the teams practically did not unite to achieve a better result.

Sergey Tikhonov, Technical Director, Agro Core

I am glad that there are these three teams that have won. This confirms that the market is developing, new projects are emerging. But a lot of interesting ideas and technological solutions simply were not conveyed to the audience. This is a hackathon, and participants first of all should have presented something new, interested potential business partners.

Roman Kravchenko, the founder of the Internet of Things IoT Hub accelerator lab

It seemed to me that the 18 projects that were presented at the final pitching are a bit too much. The development of teams would benefit the development - let there be 10 projects, but of higher quality. Participants did not favor such an approach, and part of the projects with ready-made prototypes remained within the framework of the working group, without any development. The teams made little use of the potential of the hackathon and did not search for like-minded people who could strengthen the realization of the idea.

Another drawback is that many participants failed to demonstrate the value of the product. First of all, you need to submit a prototype and tell about its advantages, and only then pay attention to the details. In general, there is a result, and we look forward to the implementation of promising projects in practice.

Victor Galkin, Syngenta marketing campaign manager

I was very pleased that the hackathon had many good projects and specialists who are ready to work and improve their ideas. In determining the winners, the judges were almost unanimous, it upset me a bit, I wanted more intrigue. Among the shortcomings I can note that the teams were obsessed with ideas and paid little attention to the practical implementation of the project. They did not unite and communicated little with mentors. If there is a need for some technical solutions, then you need to approach the mentors yourself, look for specialists who will help. Well, the teams need to analyze more what already exists on the market and delve into the monetization of the project.

Yuri Petruk, head of the AgTech Ukraine association, organizer

Hackathon met our expectations. There were interesting ideas, new teams, pivot, joint development, but, most importantly, there was the right atmosphere for the exchange of knowledge and experience, professional communication and useful contacts.

The number of participants this year was slightly less than the previous one. The same can be said about their activity. The quality of the projects of this year has practically not changed, but there were teams with finished products that came to the hakaton for mentoring expertise. I really liked several such projects.

In the future, we want to try regional and international formats; in the fall we plan to conduct an industrial Hackathon in the direction of processing agricultural products together with APPAU. In the future, we will try to make the selection of participants more stringent and increase team discipline.

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The All-Ukrainian Hakaton of Agrarian Innovations is the largest annual event for the creative community of the national scale, dedicated to technological innovations in the agricultural sector. You are waiting for cool mentors, interesting networking, special atmosphere and many opportunities to realize the potential.

The All-Ukrainian Hakaton of Agrarian Innovation enables people with IT to understand the problems and needs of the agrarian business, and representatives of the agricultural sector to assess the opportunities that technologies can offer to solve their problems. For existing projects this is a great chance to find new members in your team, get advice from mentors and declare yourself in the media field.

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