Colorado Secretary of State’s office owns massive amounts of public data sets that are rarely used. In 2013, Go Code Colorado was launched as a way to encourage coders and entrepreneurs to team up and turn public data sets into an app that can be monetized.

The event is held statewide, operating in five cities, allowing two teams from each city to advance to the next round. Entering its third year in Grand Junction, the Factory hosted the Challenge Weekend from April 9-11. Seven teams were given 52 hours to create a viable app.

Assistant professor of computer science, Karl Castleton and his team created an app called BrewCode that helped microbreweries and wineries connect to their customers with a loyalty program via social media.

Sarah Harvey, a computer science major joined a Go Code team called Vet APP.

“There is no current resource for veterans to find services that are available to them unless they become part of a group that tells them about some of the resources,” Harvey said. “[The app] is a map which shows the nearby businesses that offer special benefits, services, discounts to veterans. There is also a page where users could add additional business that they know about that they didn’t see on the map or additional lists.”

Other team products included an app called MiHi-Crave, which connects night time eateries to tourists visiting Colorado, AltEnj, an app to help incentivize alternative energy and ChurchSpotCo, an app that could help churches plan services and events using various data sets.

KodeMonkey, an app that connects oil and gas industry jobs to their respective workers, and COfax, which matches small businesses looking to relocate in areas for prospective clients using 12 different data sets, were declared the winners of Challenge Weekend.

Professor of business Georgann Jouflas and instructor of mass communications Adam Cochran participated on Team COfax and will advance to the next round in Boulder on April 21-23 for Mentor Weekend. Winners of the competition will receive $25,000 to expand their project and meet with engineers from Google.

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