Create Virtual Chat Buddies (VCBs) to automate the way people communicate with devices, services, and more!

On Saturday, January 23rd, 2016 Bell Labs will be hosting a hackathon at our Murray Hill, NJ Headquarters.  We are hosting this event to introduce local developers to a new messaging platform currently in development here at Bell Labs.

We will give each participant access to our Python SDK, which will enable you to create your own Virtual Chat Buddies (VCB) for our new OneApp™ platform.  

So what is a Virtual Chat Buddy (VCB or Buddy)?  Let’s say you are walking down the street, and you decide to walk into your local café for a drink.  With a VCB that café would be able to engage you as you walk in. You might get a message welcoming you to the store, along with details about their menu, specials, and even an option to place your order. And all of this occurs before you walk up to the counter.  This is one use-case for a VCB, but cases could be made for nearly anything that’s connected to the Internet (IoT).  Well, that’s where we see the future of communications heading.  And this is the driving force behind our OneApp™ platform.

As local developers, we want to see how you would use a service like this. Your VCB “Buddy” could be something simple such as a newsfeed buddy, or something more complex such as an Uber Buddy. No idea is too big, or too small. We look forward to see what you come up with.

Now for the fun part, there will be food, prizes, games, and even a few workshops throughout the day! So bring your friends, and take a day to build something great.

Core programming skills are highly suggested for this event

View full rules

Prizes

$750 in prizes

Apple TV 4th Gen (5)

(max 5-per team)

Eligibility

To participate you must (i) be eighteen (18) years of age or older and legally able to accept this Offer or have the permission of your parent or guardian as evidenced by their signature on this Offer and (ii) attend the Bell Labs Hackathon event in Murray Hill, New Jersey on January, 2016 for the entire duration of the event. Applications may not be submitted by businesses or government entities.

This Offer is void in, and not open to legal residents or citizens of Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Syria, or any other nation, state, province, or territory where it is void or restricted by law. The Offer is not open to any other individuals restricted by U.S. export control laws or economic sanctions and/or by any other applicable export control laws.

Employees, directors, members, partners, agents, and consultants of Sponsor and its affiliates and their immediate family members as well as the supplier of goods or services in connection with the Contest are not eligible to participate in the Contest. “Immediate family” is defined as the spouses, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, brothers, sisters, (but excludes children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren) of the employee and his or her current and former spouse, if applicable. This definition also includes individuals for whom an employee is the current legal guardian or individuals who are not legally related to but who reside with an employee. (“Step” relationships also are covered by the definition “immediate family”). Further, individuals to whom an offer of employment with Sponsor or one of its affiliates is outstanding are also not eligible to participate.

Teams of up to five (5) eligible persons are allowed to participate, provided each member of the team meets the eligibility and other criteria above, and the team follows the additional rules applicable to teams, discussed below. Membership on any particular team will be finalized at 1 p.m. (ET) on the Contest Final Day.

Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify or remove any Application for any reason or no reason within its sole and absolute discretion. Sponsor may reject or remove from consideration any Application which might be considered offensive, defamatory, obscene, illegal, harmful, in violation of Sponsor’s Site use or privacy policies, or that otherwise falls short of Sponsor’s standards.

Judges

Bell Labs CTOs

Bell Labs CTOs
Alcatel Lucent, Bell Labs

Judging Criteria

  • TBA
    Criteria will be announced once the SDK is released, in early January.