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Innovation on show at first IT Code Fair

By Leanne Miles

IT students Aden Herold, Farzhand Ali and Joseph Packer won Best Undergraduate Team and an Innovation Prize IT students Aden Herold, Farzhand Ali and Joseph Packer won Best Undergraduate Team and an Innovation Prize

The latest in web and smart phone coding technology were recently on display at Charles Darwin University as students went head-to-head as part of the inaugural IT Code Fair.

It was an opportunity for IT and software engineering students to compete in a coding competition while also showcasing their skills to industry representatives and future employers.

Student projects ranged from an app that could transmit top secret messages or codes, to integrated learning games such as a mind reader app and an online bookshop for buying and selling second hand books.

Best Team Masters and Innovation Prize winners Navpreet Kaur, Kanwarpreet Singh and Pankaj Kashyap developed the “Steganography” app as part of the Masters in IT and Software Engineering.

Pankaj Kashyap said the software allowed for information to be hidden or imbedded behind an image and transmitted.

“This technology could be used for transmitting personal information that could be at risk of cyber intrusion such as bank account information,” Pankaj said. “Only those with a secure key can open the message. Others just see the image.

“There is a real need for this type of technology, particularly in the convenient form of a mobile app.”

Senior Lecturer in IT Barbara White said that along with the coding competition the event was an opportunity for local high school students to learn about coding and potential pathways for future careers in IT through a series of “Hour of Code” workshops.

“The ‘Hour of Code’ workshops are part of a global movement reaching tens of millions of students in more than 180 countries, supported by Microsoft, Apple and Amazon,” Ms White said. “These workshops introduced students to code and provide opportunities for them to create technology.”

Ms White said that other activities on the day included speed dating, where CDU undergraduate and postgraduate students nearing graduation were given an opportunity in one minute to pitch their skills and achievements to IT employers.

Other competition winners included Ling An Lin who won Best Individual Masters, Richard Deveraux won Best Individual third year, while Best Undergraduate Team project went to Farzhand Ali, Aden Herold and Joseph Packer. Best Individual second year was a tie between Robert Jackson and Bidhan Neupane and runner-up was Roy Galet. An Innovation Prize also went to the team of Farzhand Ali, Aden Herold and Joseph Packer.

The event was supported by Department Corporate and Information Services, Dash Media, Captovate, Dialog, Radical Systems, Kinetic IT, Relational Data Systems, Dolphin Software, SRA, MIP and ATEGRA.