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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


App-a-thon provides UA students with scholarship opportunity

Ryan Revock
Ryan Revock / Arizona Daily Wildcat Ami Buczek teaches a programing class in preparation for an upcoming app-a-thon. The class was for a coding language used in PixelSense computers

An app-a-thon will give UA students the chance to win scholarship money through programming on Saturday.

The app-a-thon event, which will be hosted in the Gould-Simpson building in room 906, was put together by the UA organization Women in Information and Computer Science and the UA Information Technology Student Advisory Board.

App-a-thon participants will create applications for the Microsoft PixelSense computers, of which the Main Library now has two, according to Kate Maroney, a computer science sophomore, co-president of WICS and secretary of ITSAB.

The PixelSense computers purchased for the school do not come with many applications, so the purpose of the app-a-thon is to create applications for the computers here on campus, Maroney said.

The app-a-thon is open to UA students in teams of one to three members, according to Maroney. There is no entry fee for the competition, and the first through third place winners will receive a scholarship, Maroney said. The first place prize is a $600 scholarship for the winning team.

“PixelSense in the library can be used for study groups,” said Ami Buczek, senior co-president of WICS and computer science major. “Several people can sit around a table and input ideas; they can all write on the PixelSense. It is very much like a giant tablet.”

The app-a-thon is 12 hours long and will be judged by members of WICS and ITSAB, Maroney said.

“Everyone can work on the same screen, so instead of passing around a laptop to work on it [school work], they can all be looking at this huge table and editing it all at once,” Maroney said.

The PixelSense computers use a programming language called “C#” (pronounced as “C sharp”) that may be unfamiliar to many students. WICS held two classes on C#, and it will put the slides from those classes on its website, Buczek said.

Cindy Trieu, a freshman studying computer science and mathematics and an intern for WICS, said she plans to compete in the app-a-thon.

“Know what you are good at,” Trieu said, speaking about strategy for the app-a-thon. “So if you are good at bar coding, that should be what you do; if you are good at artwork, maybe you should consider doing the graphics; if you are good at logic, maybe you should be the one who debugs the programmer’s code.”

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