2017 ODTUG GeekAThon

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SAVE THE DATE: ODTUG announces its 2nd annual GeekAThon! Get your *GEEK ON* and dazzle the community with your brilliant skills!

In case you missed it, last year at Kscope16, we piloted a new beacon technology to reduce labor costs and create important analytics for future conferences. Each attendee received a beacon attached to the back of their badge, and ODTUG used this new technology to count session and conference attendance as well as identify hot spots throughout the week. These beacons used a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology that sent signals to receivers located in the session rooms and exhibit hall.

Last year was so much fun that we decided to do it again!



  1. Each team must come up with a problem that is being solved by the solution. The problem can be anything - personal, business, environmental, etc.
  2. Each solution must incorporate at least one Kscope beacon. If the contestant does not have a Kscope beacon, one total beacon may be provided to each individual contestant/team by ODTUG. These will be mailed out as soon as the registration is received and indicates that a beacon is needed.
  3. Each solution must incorporate the Kscope beacon Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signal in a meaningful way.
  4. The top three solution winners will receive a prize. One prize per place will be awarded. There shall be no ties. Judging will be based on a weighted points system (see Scoringsection below).
  5. The solution does not have to incorporate any type of Oracle technology. However, discretionary points shall be awarded by the judges for unique and innovative solutions.
  6. Nothing additional will be supplied for the solution by ODTUG, but contestants can choose to incorporate any other component of their wish. (Please do not harm any humans or animals in this process. :) )


The sum total final "submission" includes:
  1. 1 registration form (listing all team members, each team member’s associated company and email address, and an initial idea) submitted by July 16, 2017, 11:59 PM PDT by a member of ODTUG (free or paid) who is at least 18 years of age.
  2. 1 video entry uploaded to the designated website by September 15, 2017 11:59 PM PDT (details listed below).
  3. 1 solution document uploaded to the designated website by September 15, 2017 11:59 PM PDT that details the team members, problem, solution, all code used, and steps to reproduce the solution.


  • To participate, contestants do not have to have been an attendee of Kscope.
  • Submission must be solely owned by the submitter or submission team - not the submitter's company or corporation.
  • ODTUG and third-party affiliates have the right to make the submission video and document available for download to the public at large. ODTUG has the permission to release all team member names.
  • Any third-party artwork or code used must be declared and have an appropriate license.
  • ODTUG holds no legal responsibility for the distribution or use of this submission.
  • Entries must be submitted by September 15, 2017 11:59 PM PDT. The online location for upload will be revealed to all registered contestants. The video entry and solution document will be considered the final submission.
  • Contestants may only be part of one single submission, either as a team or as an individual.
  • If multiple people work on the final solution, only one person can be the primary person for the prize.
  • Teams can have any number of people on them. Pets may also be team members. Each team must have at least one free or paid ODTUG member actively participating and may include folks from any walk of life (including kids, people outside of our industry, Oracle employees, non-Oracle folks, etc.) .
  • Judges cannot both judge and be a contestant. Oracle employees may not serve on the Judges panel.
  • Teams are allowed to change throughout the build process. Non-registered folks may join a registered team/individual after the registration period. Registered teams may condense to a single individual contestant. Registered individuals may expand to become teams.
  • The initial solution idea mentioned on the registration form is allowed to change throughout the contest period. The first idea that you register with does not have to be the final solution.

Beacon Tips

  • Watch this Beacon 101 video on YouTube.
  • The beacon is manufactured by Minew and is the Sticker iBeacon i6 model:
    • It is based on the Nordic nRF51822 chipset.
    • It uses the CR2016 battery and is replaceable.
    • You can find out more information about the Beacon here.
  • Our vendor has the manufacturer change the firmware settings prior to shipment. Therefore, some of the standard beacon model properties may be different.
  • Beacons from Kscope may have already depleted their battery from their high beacon frequency. Verify that your beacon is still powered using an iBeacon scanner available on your mobile device. If you need to replace the beacon battery, this model uses a CR2016 battery and has an expected life of one to four weeks.


  • Creativity, innovation, and purpose (30 points)
    • Story, usefulness, and creativity
  • Documentation (70 points)
    • Diagram/code/schematics of all components used
    • Instructions for re-creating solution
    • Video summary of solution
  • Judges' Discretion (up to 20 points)

Important Dates

Registrations Open

During ODTUG Kscope17

Registrations Close

July 16, 2017, 11:59 PM PDT

Submissions Close

September 15, 2017 11:59 PM PDT

Winners Announced!

End of September - TBD. Stay tuned!


Sam Hetchler Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association
Jake Turrell Turrell Consulting
Adrian Png Insum
Danny Bryant Accenture Enkitec Group


First place


Second place


Third place



What is a GeekAThon?

A GeekAThon is a contest in which players compete by building something using technology. We decided to keep the format open, so we're opting for a Maker Faire approach. Contestants will use their Kscope17 beacon to solve a problem of their choosing. They can hack the beacon, repurpose the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signal, and/or build a new object of their choice. Beyond a few ground rules, the biggest limiting factor will be time. The contest will run from as soon as you register through Friday, September 15 at 11:59 PM Pacific time. The registration period for contestant sign-ups opens during Kscope17 and runs through July 16, 2017.

Who is eligible to participate in ODTUG's GeekAThon?

Individuals or teams may compete. Folks from all walks of life are eligible, including Oracle employees, non-Oracle folks, people who aren't even in the business world, people who are not able to attend Kscope17, non-adults, etc. Contestants may be located anywhere in the world. We welcome and encourage any geek to join in on the fun!

Note: We are intentionally running this contest in summer in case families would like to work together on a solution.

What is a beacon, and how do I use it?

Here is a great 101 video on beacons. They're pretty rudimentary objects whose sole purpose is to transmit the message "I am here" to some type of receiving object. Most aren't connected to the Internet, nor do they store much information (and no personal information) beyond a few ID numbers. Don't worry – you don't have to hack into it or even take it apart if you don't want to. Most smartphones can read the beacon signals. The final solution must incorporate the beacon's Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signal in some capacity, but check the full rule list here. And yes, you must use at least one Kscope17 beacon model in your solution.

What if I am unable to attend Kscope17 and won’t have one?

If you are unable to attend Kscope17, don't fear! We have a beacon for you that we can mail out! Up to one beacon can be sent out to each registered individual/team. Please allow up to 1 week for the beacon to arrive.

How does someone win? What do they win?

Winners will be selected by a panel of judges who are known "makers" in our community. The judges will use a pre-determined set of criteria to select the top three winners. All GeekAThon winners will be announced at the end of September.

Winners will receive...bragging rights to winning the ODTUG GeekAThon! And, the top three winners (individuals or teams) will win:
First Place: $500
2nd Place: $300
3rd Place: $200

This sounds awesome. How do I sign up?

We are requesting signups, which will open during Kscope17 and close July 16 at 11:59 PM Pacific time. To register for the contest, you will need to know:

  • if you'll be on a team
  • who will be on your team (and their contact information)
  • a basic premise of your idea, and
  • whether or not you'll need a beacon (to be supplied by ODTUG)

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