International Space Apps Challenge

By Jessica Colaço
  Published 16 Mar 2012
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The International Space Apps Challenge is an international codeathon-style event that will take place over a 48 hour period in cities on all seven continents – and in space – on the weekend of 21-22 April 2012. The iHub will host this event in Nairobi.

The event embraces collaborative problem solving with a goal of producing solutions to global challenges.

How it Works

Participants such as concerned citizens, discipline experts, engineers, scientists, and software developers attend events hosted in cities around the world. At these events, individuals collaborate with others by forming teams focused on solving a particular challenge. The teams compete with other teams around the world to utilize publicly available data to design innovative “solutions” to a pre-determined series of global “challenges.” The challenges are collected prior to the event from supporting organizations.


Challenges are grouped into four broad categories:

  1. Software Development
  2. Citizen Science Platforms
  3. Open Hardware
  4. Data Visualization

It’s not just about smart phone applications! The International Space Apps Challenge will provide solutions that:

  1. Address strategic exploration needs
  2. Address strategic social needs (life on Earth)

To date, 50+ challenges have been submitted. These challenges are being vetted with development communities such as the Yahoo! Developer Network to refine them prior to the event.

Event Locations

Events are confirmed in 11 locations on all 7 continents, and in space, including

  • San Francisco, United States
  • Tokyo, Japan
  • Melbourne and Canberra, Australia
  • Jakarta, Indonesia
  • Exeter and Oxford, United Kingdom
  • Nairobi, Kenya
  • Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • McMurdo Station, Antarctica
  • International Space Station

The iHub will host the event in Nairobi.

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