Summary

How do you make a street light do more than light a street? 

A team of developers at Tech Mahindra, a GE Digital Alliance Partner and one of India’s largest and most innovative Systems Integrators, did just that – with an app they built on Predix.  

In September 2016, over 260 Tech Mahindra developers participated in GE Digital’s first partner-run hackathon on Predix. The winning team developed Smart Lighting, a Predix-powered solution for city street lights that provide remote management and preventive maintenance and can track system and unit efficiency. By avoiding street light outages, city governments can benefit from significant cost savings through troubleshooting and repair, safety improvements, reduction in crime, and a more streamlined operation.  

As one of the judges, I felt the Smart Lighting team did a very good job articulating the solution as a business need and why it was compelling. With the time they had, they demonstrated the power of Predix and the thinking behind their solution.

This 24-hour event was held simultaneously across four Tech Mahindra campuses – Bangalore, Bhuvaneshwar, Hyderabad, and Vizag – to help drive innovation and deep knowledge of Predix among their developers. The hackathon also raised awareness around issues faced by their customers and the potential of the Predix platform to enable powerful industrial solutions.

To that end, GE Digital and Tech Mahindra worked together to identify actual problems that are impacting their customers. With issues defined, hackathon participants chose an area of focus to create industrial solutions that could affect the real world.

Suprasanna Addanki, AVP – GE Digital Delivery Head at Tech Mahindra, said “The developers who participated in the hackathon were very excited for the opportunity to work on an Industrial IoT platform like Predix. The participating developers put all of their energy in this, going beyond their boundaries in the 24 hours they were given. Whether they won or lost, the experience of building Predix-powered apps was extremely valuable. They know that when they build apps on Predix, their solutions could have real-world implications."

Preparation for the event was as intense as the hackathon itself. Participants received three days-worth of online training modules and were set up with trial accounts to get ramped up for the 24-hour whirlwind of Predix coding. Each of the 53 teams honed in on one of 18 verticals, including smart cities, healthcare, mining, and aviation. For added inspiration and encouragement, Denzil Samuels, Global Head of Channels & Alliances, GE Digital, kicked things off in a welcome video.

The panel of judges, which included technical and business management experts – both from Tech Mahindra and GE Digital, had the difficult task of choosing a winner. Judging criteria included:

  • Relevance to business
  • Ease of deployment and reuse
  • Innovation
  • Ability to create a demo

GE Digital judges found it rewarding to see Predix in action, but the developers benefitted from the experience, too.

According to one of the participants on the Smart Lighting team, “Predix allowed us to break the boundaries of our comfort zone, which really motivated us and made the hackathon much more fascinating. The event was a great learning experience for each one of us.”

Interested in hosting your own hackathon to bring your employees up to speed and create off-the-shelf solutions and demos?  We can help.  Contact us here.

Over 260 Tech Mahindra developers participated in GE Digital’s first partner-run hackathon on Predix. The winning team developed Smart Lighting, a Predix-powered solution for city street lights that provide remote management and preventive maintenance and can track system and unit efficiency.

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About the author

Mike Plottier

Partner Account Executive, GE Digital

Mike Plottier is a Partner Account executive with GE Digital, running key global and strategic partnerships such as Accenture and TechMahindra. Mike joined GE Digital from Oracle where he was Vice President, Global Converged Infrastructure Group. Mike's experience has focused on working with partners to help customers achieve new levels of business outcomes through digital transformation.  

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