Radio Hack Europe 2019 was a 48-hour hackathon around the theme “Radio and media of tomorrow”, which took place on 29-31 March on the EPFL campus, with the support of  MediaRoad and the Initiative for Media Innovation.

This spin-off event from Radiodays Europe, which occurred the weekend before the conference, was intended for anyone interested in shaping the future of radio in Europe, and brought together media professionals, entrepreneurs, researchers and students, as well as people who had an interest or curiosity in media and innovation. In this respect, hackathons are an opportunity for people from different backgrounds to work together in an open and collaborative manner, over a short period of time, to prototype new concepts, products or services, usually around a specific theme.

In this case, participants and guests gathered on Friday evening 29 March for a warm-up session, during which companies such as SRG SSR and Xperi showcased radio and music-related APIs that were made available to hackers for the duration of the event. The participants then formed teams and began to develop their project, from the design phase up to the implementation of a prototype. Throughout the event, the hackers were hosted by the organizers and mentored by an expert from DAVID Systems.

On Sunday afternoon 31 March, three projects (see below) were pitched to an international jury of experts and were judged according to seven criteria including ingenuity, creativity, impact, technology, marketability, sustainability and the quality of the pitch itself. In addition, a fourth project was presented, out of competition, by a participant who was not able to attend the entire event. Altogether, around 40 people were present at the presentations and the award ceremony.

Two days later, on 2 April, a session on media innovation and Radio Hack Europe 2019 was organized as part of the Radiodays Europe conference. This was an opportunity to present the results of the hackathon and allowed the 70 or so people attending the session to discover the winning project, as well as the more provocative project that was out of competition.

The projects from Radio Hack Europe 2019

  • First place: “RadioAct”, an integrated poll platform to get real time feedback
  • Second place: “TiMe”, a service to provide bite-sized personalized content during fragmented time
  • Third place: “Engagement Booster!”, a concept that wants to use gamification to tighten radio communities
  • Out of competition: “RAS = Radio Ad Sucks”, a concept to block radio ads by replacing them with personal ads or messages, or even funny fake ads made by the community

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