Capital One DevExchange Hackathon


Sorry for yelling at you, lol I'm just so pumped and excited right now. I spent 12 hours in a room with 70 other developers reimagining banking and building a voice interface for an Alexa skill that would work on the Amazon Echo Device.

I participated in the Capital One DevExchange Hackathon held at Capital One Labs where they gave us access to brand new APIs that allow developers to do things like checking the number of rewards points a user has, or provide a personalized list of Credit Card offers in less than 60 seconds or even opening a bank account... all from an API! This is a first in the banking industry.

What really interested me in this Hackathon was building a skill for the Amazon Echo. (If you haven't heard of the Echo, Google it and prepare to have your mind blown wide open) The Amazon Echo education team was going to be on site to show us how to build Alexa skills!

When you hear the word skills you can think of them as apps that run on the Echo. What is so interesting to me is that the Echo is voice enabled, and voice powered. There is no visual user interface, everything you build has to work using voice alone.

During the hackathon, I built a very basic skill - but it worked! I am hooked now, and working on developing a skill that I will be publishing in the near future.

You get any swag?

Funny you should ask ;) As soon as we walked in we were handed a giant bag filled with swag! Multiple shirts, a very cool hat, candy, stickers and more. I made out like a bandit. The kitchen was stocked with drinks and food all day long. They had a catering company provide lunch and dinner, the food was on point!

The coolest part of the day was when my team won third place out of 15 teams! We also won Amazon Dots!! How cool is that?!? I tried to get several of my co-workers to come with me to this event but they didn't want to take off from work. Bet they wish they came now, lol ;)

My Team and I won third place!

I had SO MUCH fun at this hackathon. I hope to see you at the next one I attend.

Until next time,