Get ready for HackUB!
Mongolia is a developing country with 3 million people living on the 35th largest land in the world. The untouched, wild nature from the desert to steppe to the mountains, the nomadic lifestyle inherited from the era of Genghis Khan, the minerals including gold, copper and coals and the unique lifestyle of nearly 70% of the population living in the capital city Ulaanbaatar and the humanitarian and development needs attract hundreds of thousands of tourists, social workers, expats, repats, investors and businesses from all over the world every year.
These people are living in the era of information technology, where data is making people’s life better and easier. Data has transformed the way we live in the following 3 phases:
- Data existed.
People had to talk to ask around to search for information.
- Data was collected, structured and became accessible systematically. (CSA data) People began to search for information on their computers and smartphones.
- Data is processed, analyzed and presented.
AI, ML and Recommendation are changing the way people make decisions in their life on a regular basis. People are relying on data to make decisions for them proactively more and more.
It is human nature to be able to have access to data so that they can make smart and informed decisions in their life. It exists in every part of our life and every segment of society. Therefore, the world is trending in the direction of data science, machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Data exists in Mongolia but it is not collected, structured and easily accessible today. Lack of such CSA data becomes a significant constraint in our daily life. We shouldn’t have to spend minutes and hours to find a nearby coffee shop that has fast internet and is open late night nor should we have to find a good Italian restaurant that is good for family. We shouldn’t have to spend hours in traffic only to know that the grocery store is closed, nor should we have to become victim of bad products and services because we simply didn’t know about it upfront. We shouldn’t have to keep repeating the same information over and over again, when we could simply store it one place and make it easily accessible. We want to have access to the information we need within a matter of milliseconds, compare different options and make a decision right away. If we are impressed with something, we want to share it with the others.
These are some of the very common problems faced by locals, businesses, expats, repats and tourists in Mongolia today. Lack of such CSA data is complemented by social media posts asking for information and recommendation, word of mouth and trial and error. There is no feedback loop on experiences and impressions back to the general public to help others have access to that same information. To describe this situation in a simple term, we came up with: “black-box-data effect”. One of the factors of developing a country based on economy is having insight into the people. The way to have that insight is by having good data. And the way to get that data is the CSA phase.
We strongly believe the people who are faced with the aforementioned problems are the ones who know the situation best and can think of creative ways to get us to CSA phase. And we believe we need to hear from as many people as possible on how we can solve the problem. A key to CSA’ing data is - technology. Therefore, we are proposing to organize a hackathon among students, working professionals, permanent and temporary residents in Mongolia to come up with an innovative way to solve the problem, implement it and experiment it in real world by engaging users.
In the center of brainstorming, organizing, engaging and helping the users (expats, tourists, repats, locals and businesses) through this hackathon, what we are doing perfectly matches with the definition of the word: “hub”. Therefore, we call our hackathon: “HUB”. It can also be interpreted as the: “Hack UB”. The details of the hackathon is included below.
HUB is a hackathon that we are proposing to organize in summer of 2017 to address the challenge of the black-box-data effect in Mongolia based on some of the latest and greatest technologies. This will help expats, tourists, repats, locals and businesses connect with each other, providing more data insights and better development and business opportunities. We aim to proactively remove all obstacles concerning administration, logistics, communication, technologies and platform so that participants in the HUB only need to worry about implementing their wildest imaginations and creativities and solve a real-world problem. Our most goal of this hackathon is to spot an i-smart (innovative, specific, measurable, achievable, results-focused and time-bound) solution and a group of talents that can take on the project beyond the hackathon and turn it into a real-world product. The following are the details of the HUB.
Meet the HUB organizing team.