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SAP Technology Innovation Platform team won the 2nd place in the Clean & Green hackathon in Singapore!

The event (taking place from 26 to 27 April 2013) is the first ever hackathon organized by National Environment Agency of Singapore. It is also the first hackathon with a theme of safe guarding environment, conserving energy, and changing people’s behavior for sustainable development in Singapore. Two other SAP colleagues — Naveen and Daniel — and I, together with two PhD candidates from local universities (Peng Shuai from NTU and Yong Sheng from NUS) formed a team HANAVis and participated in the event.

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While the most of the other 20 participating teams focused on mobile application or website development, we tried to leverage our strength on data analysis and visualization using HANA. Our interest went to the largest data datasets provided in the hackathon — the log files of two popular apps (Weatherlah and Trafficlah) in Singapore. The logs contain weather and traffic data in Singapore for around one and a half year, and are 6GB and 1GB in size, respectively. Without using HANA, other teams were not even able to open the file. We imported the data to HANA and data processing became as simple as working with excel spreadsheets.

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We were able to create hourly plots for traffic intensity and incidents, to draw real-time heat maps of vehicle density, and correlate weather and traffic to predict traffic jams with rain forecast before the congestion starts to form up. We also proposed to design an app which promotes public transportation during raining weather to reduce traffic on the road. To be honest, it feels great to have several “wow” moments during a three minute pitch.

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The guest of honor, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources of Singapore, Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan also joined us for a discussion after the event. He shared with us his belief in using data analysis to make Singapore a greener city, and showed his great interest in HANA. We were the runner up team, but HANA is surely the biggest star.

This has been a great experience for me and my fellow team mates. For Peng Shuai and Yong Sheng, the speed and power of HANA had blown their mind. We learnt, hacked, made friends, and had fun.  What can you ask for more (possibly free beers ;>)?

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You can find more cool stuff about this hackathon on Simon‘s Blog and University Alliances’ entry.

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3 Comments

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  1. Jan Penninkhof

    Hi Dean,

    Congrats on the excellent achievement.

    May I just add another “wow” to the story? Can’t exactly tell how you’re processing the data, but the visualizations look stunning! Well done πŸ™‚

    Btw, 6GB of weather data compared to 1GB of traffic data? I thought there was only one type of weather in Singapore, but I may be wrong then πŸ˜‰

    Cheers,

    Jan

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    1. Dean Wang Post author

      Hi Jan,

      Indeed in Singapore it is almost raining everyday. The app actually collects real time data so people can still report “cloudy” or “windy” before or after it is actually raining. It is funny that the original data set include all degrees of rains: rainy, showery, showery with thunder etc… we need to aggregate them before consider a particular time as “raining” πŸ™‚

      Also, the data are of different time window and are thus different in size.

      Cheers,

      Dean

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