CMU-SV Students Place in Top 10 at EA Hackathon-Silicon Valley Campus - Carnegie Mellon University

Monday, March 18, 2013

CMU-SV Students Place in Top 10 at EA Hackathon

MS Software Management Student Andres Ramirez hacks late into the night at EA's "Escape from /dev/null."
MS Software Management Student Andres Ramirez hacks late into the night at EA's "Escape from /dev/null."

Three teams from Carnegie Mellon University Silicon Valley placed in the top 10 at the Electronic Arts (EA) Hackathon this weekend. The teams represented the Software Management, Ph.D. and bicoastal Information Networking Institute (INI) programs. After arriving at the EA headquarters in Redwood City, Calif. on a Saturday morning, students quickly realized they were not going to be participating in an “average” hackathon. True to their gaming roots, EA’s “Escape from /dev/null hackathon was designed around a science fiction theme.

Surrounded by EA game posters and statues, the teams competed for over 12 hours via an outer-space programming adventure. Unlike other hackathons, EA designed a game that would require teams to navigate and choose a specific path to reach the goal and win. Along every path was a series of programming challenges that would need to be completed before moving onto the next stage.

“We really enjoyed this added layer of strategy,” said MS Software Management ’13 student, Daniel Fortner. “You wouldn’t think coding for twelve hours would be fun but having so many CMU teams around and competing in the fun atmosphere that EA designed was a great way to spend our weekend.”

After more than twelve hours of programming challenges, one team emerged victorious and all three of the CMU-SV teams placed in the top 10. The Ph.D. team (Eric Chen; David Huang; Max Siniavine) placed 4th while the MS SM team (Dan Fortner; Andres Ramirez; Petch Wannissorn) placed 7th, and the INI team (Ditaya Das;Pooja Gada; Divya Natesan) placed 9th.

Pictured above: First Row: Pooja Gada, Divya Natesan, Ditaya Das; Second Row: Max Siniavine (non-CMU), Eric Chen, Dan Fortner, Petch Wannissorn, Andres Ramirez, David Huang