NEWS

CBC Montreal hackathon ideas in motion

03/15/2015 01:22 EDT | Updated 05/15/2015 05:59 EDT
Hackers at the CBC hackathon have been working for the last 48 hours to finalize their products and ideas.

Over the last two days, they've been creating new products to revoloutionize the way CBC delivers its news. On Sunday afternoon, their ideas will be judged by a panel, and the group deemed to have the best idea will win a $2,000 cash prize, as well as the opportunity to meet with CBC executives and different Montreal tech leaders.

Here's a peek at the ideas hackers are working on. Let us know in the comments which ones you like.

1. Accident map

This app would create a map of Montreal that would show where traffic is affected and why. It would show little images to correspond to the reason why traffic is impacted — for instance, there might be a picture of fire to show that there’s a fire happening.

As well, there would be an interactive element when you click on the traffic snarl. The Twitter and Instagram posts made within the last couple hours at that location would pop up to show different angles and comments about the incident.

On top of that, there would be a mechanism for people to report accidents that the news might not cover, for example, when bikers get hit by car doors. With that information, journalists could note trends or particularly dangerous intersections.

2. No connection necessary

    This app would create a portal between the CBC offices and the reporter’s cell phones so that even if a reporter was in a place with no 3G or phone connection, they would be able to get information from the desk. They would also be able to see the current news stories on cbc.ca/montreal, as well as our competitor’s most recent information. This could be helpful for stories like the train derailment in Lac Mégantic, where many reporters’ cell phones didn’t work well.

3. Reading the comments

    This product would use artificial intelligence to read the comment section and determine how people feel about a particular issue. The AI ascribes numbers to particular words that might appear in the comments, which would give reporters a sense of public opinion on particular people and issues by ranking them on a scale of negative to positive.

4. Pitch widget

    This widget would create an easy form for people to fill out if they had story ideas to send to CBC. It could be embedded into CBC.ca.

5. Personalized CBC

    This idea would change the way CBC.ca appears to different viewers. They’d have the opportunity to change the sidebars on the website to reflect what’s interesting to them. The widgets would be created by users, and could include things like automatically generated external links related to the news story, links to Wikipedia, or online reaction to the story.

6. Hyper-local map

    This map would show your location in Montreal while also showing the nearest news events to where you are at any given time. It would also have the capacity for people to submit their own news events near them, complete with photos and information.

7. News by neighbourhood

    Like the last idea, this map would show Montreal’s neighbourhoods, and allow people to click to see what news is happening in their neighbourhood.

8. Personalized news application

    This idea would revolutionize CBC’s news app to make it personalized by user location and user interest. It would also let people weigh in on what they’d like to see covered. CBC’s assignment desk would post what they hope to cover in a day, and users would be able to ‘swipe right’ or ‘swipe left’ depending on whether they’re interested in the idea.

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