On April 28-30th a one of a kind hackathon took place at the great venue that is OXO2 (London). The Auriens Hackathon had the goal to get great minds together to produce ideas, solutions and prototypes for later lifers – namely later lifers that would be the clientele of the highly anticipated Auriens retirement home in Chelsea.

Over 90 participants came to work on this project, and worked tirelessly from when the teams were made to when the hacking stopped.  As the launch night began and the sun set over the river Thames, the room was soon full of eager designers, developers and those with great ideas. More than 30 ideas were pitched, which resulted in the formation 16 teams.

Demos and presentations took place throughout the entire weekend. “We were lucky enough to have IBM Watson coding talks, Altergaze and Hololens demos, plus Gerontechnology presentations and workshops, which gave each team helpful hints on how to make the end demo the best it could be. Then, of course, there was the GERT suit demonstration from Brunel University, which enabled the participants to experience the physical changes in being a later lifer,” the hackathon’s organisers said.

The winning team scooping the £5,000 1st prize was team Chad, who created a plugin designed to make internet navigation for Later Lifers much easier. They were inspired by the fact that so many people from the older generations have never been online, and would find using the internet very daunting. How Chad works is the user will speak into a microphone rather than using the mouse and keyboard to find what they need. We are excited to see what the next steps are for Chad and how it develops – congratulations!

The team winning 2nd place and £2,000 was team StoryMate, who came up with a solution using AI to combat the loneliness often faced by Later Lifers. StoryMate allows Later Lifers to use a recording feature to tell a story, which is then converted into text. They are then matched with other users with similar stories and experiences, and can then socialise. Congratulations StoryMate!

Respect to everyone who took part in the hackathon and really made it amazing. The Auriens team, the BMA team, participants, mentors and jury all contributed to a fun filled hackathon with an incredible atmosphere!