Can the Internet of Things (IoT) lead the future of Indiana’s economy? That’s the question that hundreds of technology experts will tackle next month at the 2017 IoT Civic Hackathon produced by AT&T’s Developer Program.

Indiana has made it known that we are emerging as a tech hub (even The New York Times says so), but that doesn’t mean that we are leaving behind the legacy of industries that have made Indiana one of the best states for doing business. Agriculture, manufacturing and transportation/logistics will continue to be an important staple for our state’s economy, but how do they intersect with technology and its disruptions?

“Those verticals are ripe for IoT innovation,” says Bill Soards, President of AT&T Indiana. Soards and AT&T are leading the efforts of the upcoming IoT Civic Hackathon that runs April 21-22. “With all of the growing excitement and attention spent on IoT in Indiana, this event is designed to be a bridge between Indiana’s legacy economy and the possibilities of building and energizing it through IoT innovation.”

The recent attention on IoT that Soards mentioned includes the announcement of the Indiana IoT Labs Network, which is like coworking for IoT. The first lab is currently in Fishers but plans are in the works for similar labs throughout the state.

In 2016, ClearObject launched IndyIoT, an annual event series focused on promoting the innovations already happening in IoT in Indiana. This event just won TechPoint’s inaugural People’s Choice Mira Award for Best Tech Event and they are one of the presenting partners involved with the upcoming IoT Civic hackathon.

During the IoT Civic Hackathon, representatives from our industry associations will present the challenges they face so that attendees can spend the next 24 hours devising ways in which IoT can solve, prevent or diminish those challenges. Conexus Indiana will be on-site to represent transportation/logistics, AgriNovus will represent agriculture, and the Indiana Manufacturer’s Association will speak as well.

Hackathon participants include developers, coders, marketers, IT professionals, network engineers and others who are part of the Indiana tech community. AT&T’s Developer Team will fly in from other major metros to assist with the production of this event and will leave with a larger understanding of Indiana’s impact on IoT.

Salesforce, ClearObject, Rook Security, and PactSafe are just a few of the 50+ companies showing their support by bringing their tech teams to offer guidance and advice to participants. TechPointX talent participants will also be on-site to join in on the innovation and idea sharing.

A panel of judges will evaluate the proposed solutions from hackathon participants on how much this solution moves the Indiana economy in the right direction. The judges will represent corporations, software developers, and partners and sponsors of the hackathon. Prizes totalling $10,000 in cash and other prizes will be up for grabs for the best manufacturing, best logistical, and best agriculture solutions. There is also an overall award for a best Smart Cities application.

A preview event hosted by Open Indy Brigade at The Speak Easy will be held on Thursday, March 30, for technology experts and members of the community to come together for a thoughtful discussion on IoT and to preview the upcoming hackathon. Bill Soards will share how the recent AT&T announcement of 5G capabilities in Indiana will impact IoT, Lauren Riga of IUPUI will discuss Smart Cities applications, and Dan Dawes of AgriNovus will offer insights on the current state of agriculture and tech in Indiana.

Registration is open for the IoT Civic Hackathon hosted by Launch Fishers and details can be found here.  Follow the conversation with the hashtags #ATTHack and #IoTCivicHack.

“We know these industries in Indiana will be great consumers of IoT in the years ahead,” said Soards. “We want to stimulate innovation and help spark the creation of IoT solutions in Indiana also.”