Till the fingers burn and the head spins

Hackathon: it's pretty obvious where the word comes from – a combination of "hacking" and "marathon". But what actually happens at such an event? And what does SIX have to do with it?

The first hackathon took place in 2015. And the second staging of the #SIXHackathon will happen this year. An event such as this sees IT specialists come together for a whole weekend in order to find a solution to a problem they are presented with, all under the pressure of time. Innovation, creativity and original ideas are what's needed, the aim being to devise presentable solutions – while the clock is ticking!

Unleashing creativity

Many people associate hacking with criminal activity. But a hacker can probably best be described as an inventor. He or she will try to rethink existing systems or technologies in order to get more – or something different – out of them. It is precisely this creativity that the #SIXHackathon seeks to unlock and turn into usable ideas. "A total of 40 highly interesting projects were developed and presented to the jury. A follow-up will now take place with the participating teams this year to ensure that as much benefit as possible is obtained from the work they have put in," says Andreas Iten, Managing Director Financial Information. Markus Graf, Head Innovation Management at SIX, is likewise pleased: "We saw a lot of great minds come together and we were presented with truly innovative projects. So the Hackathon was everything that we hoped for."

We will ensure that as much benefit as possible is obtained from the work they have put in."

Andreas Iten, Managing Director Financial Information

Going down new roads

But what did SIX expect from the event and from all these bright ideas? Innovation – because without innovative ideas the future will soon pass us by. The #SIXHackathon helps ensure that doesn't happen. Creating genuine innovation means going down new and unusual roads. Getting to know others on the creative scene and networking also play a role. That's why the Hackathon takes place simultaneously in London and Zurich – connecting and enabling an exchange between the two fintech hotspots. "The number of participants nearly doubled by adding the London location," says a delighted Andreas Iten, adding: "But the end of one Hackathon also represents the start of the next one. The F10 team is already working on the 2017 event."