Yes, you read that right. The Pope is hosting a hackathon in the Vatican. A Hackathon is an event that usually lasts several days where computing enthusiasts meet up to network and engage in collaborative computer programming, pushing the limits of technology as we know it today.
This week Pope Francis is hosting the first hackathon in the Vatican to tackle global issues. VHacks, in partnership with Google, Microsoft and other tech giants, will bring together 120 students and 35 mentors from diverse backgrounds, harnessing technological skills to focus on social inclusion, migrants and refugees, and interfaith dialogue.
When is the hackathon in the Vatican taking place?
The event is taking place between March 8th and March 11th. The Hackathon is 36 long hours of straight collaborative hacking.
Who can take part?
Participants were selected through partnering universities. The participants were shortlisted based on academic accomplishments, innovative thinking and alignment with the hackathon’s aims.
The VHacks event is organised by OPTIC, as well as students from MIT and Harvard University.
This is an impressive step from the Catholic Church. Hackathons like VHacks encourage the youth to engage in useful and collaborative hacking, rather than malicious hacking. This is no marketing stunt either. Father Eric explains “we have no time or resource for marketing. The point is to be useful, that’s why we chose those issues, to be impactful.”
Are you looking forward to seeing the results from the first hackathon in the Vatican? Tell us in the comments below!