More than two months passed since Stipe Stagličić won the Advanced Hackathon on the Google I/O Extended. We are interested what happened since then with his Hackathon project, if he proceeds, maybe found supporters of his idea and what were his impressions from this whole Hackathon and follow up.
Interview with Stipe Stagličić
Q: Stipe tell us shortly about yourself… Where are you from, what are you doing?
A: I was born in Zadar in September 1989. I finished my Master’s Degree on Faculty of Organization and Informatics in Varaždin three years ago and returned to Zadar with my family. Previously, I worked in Futuro where I learned a lot about web application development. They also gave me the opportunity to work on the development of iOS mobile applications. I worked on developing several iOS mobile applications such as one for Zadar Airport. At the moment, I work at OTP Bank as a software developer and developing desktop applications for internal use. In my spare time, I am developing Android and iOS mobile applications 🙂 and try as hard as I can to deal with recreational running.
Q: What is your preferred programming language?
A: My preferred programming language is, of course, Java. I have been programming also for web in PHP and in Objective-C for iOS applications, but primarily I am focused on developing applications using Java programming language, basically Android applications. I want to learn more and advance in knowing this segment of programming for mobile devices.
Q: How did you hear from the Google I/O Extended in Zadar and why did you decide to participate in the Hackathon?
A: I heard about Google I/O Extended through a local web portal and decided to come first because of the workshops for Android and iOS and several lessons on the main stage. Participation at Hackathon was not the primary, because I came to the conference alone, without a team. I registered the day before the conference started and was waiting for the workshops from the morning, I went to listen to what Hackathon themes are and what the organizers and jury’s expectations were. After that, I participated in two workshops and during the afternoon I finally decided to accept the challenge and participate in Hackathon.
Q: Do you have experience in other Hackathons before?
A: I have not participated in any Hackathon so far and this was a premier performance and therefore a challenge for me to do something useful in a short time. It was hard to get started because I wanted to develop as many features within the application with a major one which is navigation.
Q: The Advanced Hackathon had several topics you could choose from. What did you choose from the topics in the Advanced Hackathon and how did you get an idea for your winning project?
A: After analysing the proposed Hackathon topics, I got several ideas that basically belonged to one category – Digital City. The idea for the winning project was very interesting to me and I wanted to do something that would be useful to citizens of Zadar and also tourists. At one time, I was also a public transport user for a while, and I know the reasons for low use of the same. Citizens are not familiar with the exact bus routes, stations and even the line schedule, and for this reason, they are not fully using public transportation. Tourists are also not familiar with the same, especially if they are located at distant locations from the main city bus station.
So I came up with the idea of simplifying the use of public transportation to citizens and tourists so that they can view all city lines, station locations, line schedule and even get route suggestions from their location to the desired destination on their mobile device by using public transportation. The idea is to include taxi operators in the future applications upgrade and thus consolidate the whole city transportation system in one place.
Q: What was the most challenging part of this Hackathon?
A: After I decided to accept the challenge and take part in Hackathon, the atmosphere in Arsenal brought me and there were not so many challenging and difficult parts. Since I was part of a single team :), I had to do graphic design, application coding, database design, development of a web service and presentation of the solution itself so there was no time to rest throughout the entire Hackathon, and the time went faster. It was also encouraging to see other participants in the competition who invested so much effort and work into developing their ideas.
Maybe the hardest thing was after the whole night of programming, about two hours before the deadline, when I decided that the project was finished and that everything is ready for presentation, do not fall asleep until the very moment of the presentation 🙂 However, as the organization of the event itself was great and we did not miss anything throughout Hackathon, a few stronger morning coffee helped 🙂
Q: What happened after the Google I/O Hackathon?
A: After the Google I/O Hackathon, I continued to develop my idea through mobile application for Android platform and established contact with Innovative Zadar – a company founded by the City of Zadar with the goal of being the holder of coordinated and integrated development of ICT services and infrastructure for the needs of local government. As they supported the idea of the continued development of this application, I contacted Liburnija and collected all the necessary information on their part for the further development.
Q: Did you find the support and interest that you expected or wished for? What were the reactions?
A: Reactions were mostly positive. The application is recognized as useful and I hope it will soon be up and running. I have come to the approval of the City Tourist Board. The biggest support was given to me by Impaddo, which has been involved in improving the application skeleton itself and testing it, specifically because only I was involved in its design and development till now. I hope this application will encourage others to engage in creating useful tools for citizens of the Zadar and tourists to take advantage of the opportunities brought by technology advancement.
Q: What do you think about Zadars IT scene?
A: Zadars IT scene is currently dormant. It is known that there are several companies operating in Zadar where IT is a primary activity. Thus, there is also a certain IT specialist base that doesn’t need much to get started. What is missing is primarily an IT study that will attract young people to the city and encourage the creation of new IT companies or the arrival of some of the stronger IT companies in the city itself. This will allow people to remain after graduation in Zadar and their return from other cities if a certain level of competitiveness is achieved.
Q: What do you think could improve the development of the IT scene here in Zadar?
A: The development of IT scene in Zadar will primarily improve launching of IT studies at the University of Zadar this autumn. This will mean the arrival of new people in the city and creation of a potential audience for future IT conferences and meetings in our city. By increasing the target audience who would attend lectures and meetings of the IT scene in Zadar, automatically would be increased the interest of a maintaining the same. I believe there are IT experts in our town who can hold high-quality lectures and workshops and so successfully transfer the knowledge to others.
Q: You are on the 06.09.2017 presenting the final App on a new IT format in Zadar called “KickAss MeetUp” in the COIN. Sound interesting! What is the idea behind that?
A: The idea is to present the features that this application provides and to involve as many interested parties as possible in the further development of similar ideas.
Q: Whom would you recommend to come to this Meetup?
A: I would recommend arrival of all those who want to encourage the awakening of Zadars IT scene. Everyone is welcome, not only from IT but also from other corporate structures, to help generate new ideas and bring the Zadars IT scene to a higher level.
Q: Any last words?
A: I would like to thank everyone for the opportunity that was given to me after participating in the Google I/O Extended Conference and Hackathon and hereby invite everyone to come to this Meetup and thereby contribute to the awakening of the Zadars IT scene.
Thanks a lot, Stipe. In our opinion, Zadar needs more people like you and we are happy to support you on your way!
And see you on 06.09.2017 at 17:00 at the COIN on the KickAss MeetUp! 😉
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