The Magazine category is one three challenges designed for the Durban AgriHack Challenge. Participants in this category can compete to create an app for the international agricultural magazine Spore.It is CTA’s flagship publication and has been a global frontrunner when it comes to providing access to useful agricultural information in places ranging from the offices of Ministries to the fringes of African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) rural areas.
It is distributed to over 40,000 subscribers every two months. The topics broached are always pertinent and cutting edge, and since a few years the magazine is known for interacting with its readers through a received letters section. CTA also hosts a website containing all of Spore’s content to make it available to readers who are not in the position to obtain a physical copy.
CTA is now looking forward to expand on the magazine’s position as the number one voice in agricultural issues in ACP countries, and provide more useful features to its readers. Smart phones in particular offer many attractive opportunities, and the challenge for competitors in Durban is to create an app that combines both the best of Spore and the best of smartphones.
The organisation of the AgriHack does not wish to restrict participants in their creativity, but competitors may use the following list as a direction to the development of prototypes. Teams can decide on focusing on only one element or decide to incorporate more features at once in their design, or even choose to go another way with unlisted features. Take note that quality is judged to be more important than quantity. Personalisation and Interactivity with users and between readers are two key features that may be implemented for this app.
- Geolocation of users: A smartphone app can request the location of the user, which opens many options as described below.
- User profiles: Users can customise their user page to show both a public profile and indicate what type of content they primarily enjoy.
- Maps: Tied in with the above, maps can show users who else is near;
- Chat messaging: Based on the user profile and location, the app could allow users to message each other privately and connect through the app. CTA could derive statistics by collecting data on which regions feature the most active users;
- Personalised Information: Based on the region users are recognized to be located in and the content preferences they set in their user profile, the app could provide personalized content to readers.
- Push notifications: The app could send push notifications if new content has been published on the website to draw more users in.
Participants are encouraged before the event in Durban to explore the website to better envisage how they can develop their app.
Data for developing the app will also be available in required format in Durban. Other information can be found on the resource page of this website.
The winning team in this category will receive a cash prize of 4,000 Euros.
In addition they may be granted, after the hackathon, a consultancy fee (between 5,000 and 10,000 Euros, depending notably on the quality of the prototype) to finalise the product developed. The app developed will be a free app that will deliver agricultural information to stakeholders from all countries.
The app will become CTA’s property after the consultancy. The prototypes developed by non winning teams remain their properties.