The Commission and Nextcloud have awarded EUR 5,000 to a software developer based in Austria. He contributed a map-sharing application to Nextcloud that makes it easy for users to collaborate on geographic maps, and then share these with others.
"We expect there will be a lot of demand for this," said Jos Poortvliet, co-founder of Nextcloud and its director of marketing, announcing the first prize. "This is a very helpful feature, and the developer did great work."
The hackathon's award ceremony took place online on 10 May.
The hackathon aimed to contribute new features to Nextcloud, an office collaboration and file sharing cloud service available as open source, so as to improve the software's use case for public services as well as businesses and private users in Europe.
The software can be hosted by a wide variety of hosting providers but also on-premises - a solution for collaboration where GDPR compliance is critical.
The second prize (EUR 3,500) was for "organisation chart", an app created by six developers from the Philippines, Greece, and Spain. It lets Nextcloud create a dynamic organisation chart automatically, based on the organisation's contact list.
"This is a wonderful idea that will make even our own HR team super happy," said Poortvliet.
The third (EUR 2,500), fourth (EUR 1,500) and fifth (EUR 500) prizes went to projects focusing respectively on authentication, counting of objects, and translation.
The NextGov hackathon brought together 60 participants from 33 countries, including 13 EU member states as well as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Cambodia, the Dominican Republic, India, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi, Mexico, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Serbia, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, and the USA. In addition, 11 mentors and organisers joined the online teams, which got together between 25 April and 10 May.
The hackathon used the Kreative District platform. The platform's eponymous company also interacted with the hackathon participants on behalf of Nextcloud and the Commission.
"Hackathons are very close to my heart," said Thomas Gageik, Director Digital Business Solutions (DIGIT.B), at the award ceremony. "I am proud that the Commission as a public administration set out these bounties for the hackathons. It is a good use of public money."
The hackathon contributes to Commission efforts to create balance in the market for cloud services, and strengthens digital sovereignty, Director Gageik said, adding that open source is key to achieving both objectives.
Poortvliet thanked the participants for their contributions, and for their engagement and enthusiasm. "Amazing work has been done," he said. Poortvliet added that a few of the participants continue to discuss their improvements with the wider Nextcloud community. "We not only get cool features, but also have more contributions coming."
The NextGov Hackathon website (in 2022)