meraPaisa | Second Runner-Up | APIthon 2018


So, after a very long time, I got a chance to take a part in a big competition named APIthon. And with the great support of Imran Jatalla and team, we ended up with the Second Runner-up and win the trip to silicon valley.

The National level hackathon was held during the first weekend of May at the National Incubation Center Islamabad. In which teams from corporates and academia participated from all over the Pakistan.

The interesting part is that Imran Sb casually asked me to participate in the APIthon a few weeks ago and I casually said: “Yes, we should take a part in it”. And he registered for that immediately. Then on last Wednesday, two days before the APIthon I shocked with Imran Sb email in which he mentioned about the withdraw from the APIthon. So I immediately called him and told him that we should go ahead and take a part in it.

Although I was too busy with dev projects and my SIG meetups, perhaps I went there to participate. And there I come to know that I’m the only technical person who has to build everything. : – )

So, the APIthon finally started in the wonderful rainy morning of Islamabad with the wonderful sessions by the Banks, Telcos, and other digital companies. They explain about their Open APIs which we can use during the APIthon.

So as per my discussion with Imran Sb, we started a project name “meraPaisa” for Branchless Banking;

The whole day spends in the planning, discussions, and brainstorming. As Imran Sb is the business genius, so he was pushing me from the business end.

Once everything was cleared, I started developing the platform with full momentum.

After the midnight, I started finalizing the functionalities. And just before the morning, I was sitting with the cognitive part ready along with the required banking related functionalities.

At morning, Imran Sb join me back and we finalized everything which we can present at the front of the judges.

Mentors from all the companies including JAZZ, AbacusConsulting, JS Bank played a key role in our work and they were assisting us with time to time.

Finally, we submitted our deliverables and get ourselves ready for the final pitches.

As Imran Sb is the best with the pitch, so he was leading the stage during our turn and I was on his back for the technical side. At the end of the pitch, we showed our working demo to our judges and respond to the technical questions.

As our pitch was the best among all. So we were absolutely sure about the victory. Perhaps at the end, they announced us for the 2nd Runner-up. And we, who were fully confident about the victory, sitting like this;

We were shocked by the results when they announce the Winner who was already a startup working on mobiles hardware and they simply integrate JS bank OpenAPI into their existing app. The first runner-up was also the startup who was working upon VR technologies, and they simply add Jazz APIs to their app. Compared to them, we developed everything from the scratch and showed the complete running product at the end (Unfortunately no one of them knows much about Watson).

So, overall it was the great experience. Got a chance to work again the in the environment of showing something great in a very limited time. I was literally feeling my blood running through veins all the time there. : – )

BTW, one can easily see the tiredness over my face after the two days of continuous work without sleep;

So! these are the things which remain in your memory for a long time. And you always smile by remembering those moments. : – )

Data Scientist & Evangelist || IBM IBV Research Hub || IBM Recognised Speaker, Mentor and Teacher || Debater || Blogger || Guinness World Record Holder || Watson Application Developer || IBM Community Activist || Aspiring to Inspire.

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