Woodside Priory students host free hackathon for cognitive disability aids


A group of high schoolers known as the Ramen Club, from Woodside Priory School, will host a free hackathon/makeathon at the Priory from Friday, July 13, through Sunday, July 15.

The event, called Code for Cognitive Aid, is designed to be a creative experience for participants of all levels to show off their coding skills directed at addressing cognitive disabilities, according to Viansa Schmulbach, the club's founder and president.

Over a 26-hour period on Friday evening and all day Saturday and Sunday, participants will use code to create a program or a machine to increase quality of life, accessibility, and support for those living with various cognitive challenges.

Entry is free, and interested coders may register by visiting the Ramen Club website or the event page.

There will be food for purchase and a limited amount of materials available, but participants are encouraged to bring their own computers and any building materials they might have access to.

The Ramen Club members, who make up Woodside Priory Robotics Team 751, were inspired to host the event after their own interest in robotics led them to create a device to help the visually impaired, according to Viansa, a rising junior.

They visited the Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired and designed a glove that functions as a remote, with buttons in the fingertips, in an effort to make the world more accessible for those who can't see, she said, adding that they decided to host their first hackathon in July to extend their outreach.

The Priory is at 302 Portola Road in Portola Valley.


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