Hartree centre sets up competition to promote cognitive computing

The UK Hartree Centre, in partnership with IBM Watson, has organised a three-day event to give people the chance to use and develop cognitive computing technologies using IBM’s Watson computing system.

The event, called the ‘Hartree Hack’, will give participants the opportunity to learn about IBM Watson API development and even create their first cognitive app – with a chance to win up to £25,000 in support from the STFC.

Karen Lee, head of impact and engagement at STFC’s Hartree Centre said: ‘We’re delighted, through our strategic collaboration with IBM, to provide this superb opportunity for participants to get their hands on Watson technology and gain invaluable mentoring from experts at Hartree and IBM. Whether you want to pursue an entirely new idea, have a business challenge, or you just like coding, the Hartree Hack will provide the platform and skills for you to build apps on any domain of your interest, with the chance to collaborate with like-minded people, be they entrepreneurs, academics or expert coders.’

Participants of the Hartree Hack can come solo to form a team, or come as a team, and will be fully supported as they create their innovative applications using IBM Watson’s suite of API services, which are specifically designed to facilitate rapid development of applications in the cloud. A full tour of how to use IBM Bluemix, which incorporates Watson’s language, vision, speech and data platforms will be given, and expert support and mentoring will be available throughout the event.

Phil Westcott, the European ecosystem leader for IBM Watson, said: ‘We now live in an ‘API economy’ where anyone with a vision can rapidly deploy ground-breaking applications without the need for huge capital investment in IT infrastructure, nor an army of software developers... This is allowing small businesses to compete and disrupt in every industry. The HartreeHack will enable entrepreneurs and developers to rapidly prototype cognitive solutions powered by the Watson API services. We hope everyone taking part will leave empowered by with a new range of skills, knowledge and passion for building cognitive applications.’

This partnership between IBM and the Hartree Centre is part of a wider push from IBM to encourage the adoption of cognitive computing technologies. The latest coverage from earlier this week follows highlights IBM’s latest partnership with a UK university – to promote and develop skills in cognitive computing.

Participation for the Hartree Hack is free, but advance registration is essential and must be received by 27 April at the latest. The event will take place at the Hartree Centre, at Sci-Tech Daresbury in Cheshire. Further information and terms and conditions for the Hartree Hack, including registration, resources, FAQs and details and conditions for the prize can be found on the Hartree Centre website.

The Hartree Centre is a UK based research collaboration between the UK Government’s Science and Technology Facilities Council’s (STFC) and private industry, located and located at Sci-Tech Daresbury in Cheshire. The Centre aims to accelerate the use of high-performance computing, data science, big data analytics and cognitive techniques to solve industrial and research challenges.

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