Space Apps: Inspiration Beyond the Stars

| I never dreamed that Space Apps would be so inspiring. This year, we kicked off our activities in Doha, Qatar at midnight on Thursday night Qatar time and closed out in Seattle, Washington at 6 p.m. Pacific time — 76 hours of uninterrupted around-the-world hacking on NASA challenges. I spent time in New York at […]

I never dreamed that Space Apps would be so inspiring. This year, we kicked off our activities in Doha, Qatar at midnight on Thursday night Qatar time and closed out in Seattle, Washington at 6 p.m. Pacific time — 76 hours of uninterrupted around-the-world hacking on NASA challenges. I spent time in New York at the mainstage and at the Baltimore/Washington site. I’m impressed and inspired that so many people created amazing projects in such a short time. I’m also thankful for the local organizers, volunteers, and participants who made it such a productive and fun event.

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Here’s our rockstar astronaut, Doug Wheelock, with NASA’s Deputy Chief Information Officer, Deborah Diaz surrounded by NASA team members and the organizers of the New York event.

These preliminary numbers will give you an idea of the scale of the event:

  • 94 physical locations in 46 countries participated;
  • 8,126 participants registered to attend these events (not including student participation) and 735 virtual participants;
  • 630 projects were created over the weekend, 69 of them by teams that were completely virtual.

The challenges that attracted the most attention were Where on Earth (44 projects), Exomars Rover is My Robot (42 projects) and Asteroid Prospector (38 projects).  Other challenges that had 20+ projects include Space Wearables (25), Alert-Alert (24), Growing Food for A Martian Table (22), Cool It (21) and SpaceT (20). The list of projects is long and impressive.

Congratulations to the local hosts and sponsors of Space Apps events around the world, as well as to those of you who created projects. From what we’ve seen, you transformed open data into pure awesomeness. Space Apps is a success because of all of you.


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