MackHackers, including (from left) Aiden Payne, Brent Neale, Dr Sanjeev Bandi, Deb Allan, Chris Vella and (front) Nathan Payne and Matthew Skinner were supported by a visit from Mackay MP George Christensen.
MackHackers, including (from left) Aiden Payne, Brent Neale, Dr Sanjeev Bandi, Deb Allan, Chris Vella and (front) Nathan Payne and Matthew Skinner were supported by a visit from Mackay MP George Christensen.

Problem solvers race the clock to come up with solutions

WHAT do you get if you combine tech heads, entrepreneurs and problem solvers?

The answer — an annual data competition where some of the region’s most impressive minds work together to solve an issue within their community.

The 10th annual GovHack at SplitSpaces earlier this month drew teams from throughout Queensland to CQUniversity’s Mackay City Campus in a bid to provide solutions to government data problems.

It was the first time Mackay had entered the competition, and the MackHackers took on the challenge of helping people choose the most suitable regional centre for a sea or tree change.

The MackHackers — including Aiden Payne, Brent Neale, Dr Sanjeev Bandi, Deb Allan, Chris Vella and Saskia Allan — created a Way to Little Smoke, a universal, easy to use website designed to facilitate people’s decision to move to regional Australia.

Their website provides easily understandable, up-to-date information for people wishing to make the change.

Having to work across all platforms from mobiles to computers and tablets, Deb Allan said one of the biggest problems the team faced was having all the skills.

“Time was the biggest factor,” she said. “You only have the weekend to create a viable solution to the challenge.

“The other difficulty was having the right skill sets in the room.”

Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen dropped by on the Sunday morning to offer his support.

Ms Allan said she was already looking forward to next year’s event.

“Split Spaces will host the event again next year and we would love to welcome more participants,” she said.


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