Just recently, Khon Kaen University led by Asst. Prof. Denpong Soodphakdee, Ph.D., Vice President for Digital and Mr. Edward Satio, Customer Engineer of Google Workplace, APAC, held the Hackathon AppSheet Contest. Over 30 staff members joined the event to develop innovation for the work in the digital age. The work is done without programming or coding. The training was carried out by Google Company for over 2 weeks at the Learning Innovation Center, 4th Floor, Khon Kaen University.
Asst. Prof. Denpong Soodphakdee, Ph.D., Vice President for Digital, KKU revealed that the Hackathon activity is the first that Google organized in Asia Pacific, with KKU. As the two institutions have been working together for a long time, Google sees the importance of KKU, which was among the first group that had access to devices for system development. Thus the university can grow in this respect very quickly. Ten years ago, Khon Kaen University had a chance to join the Google Apps for Education Support Programs and has been supported by Google to use applications for free for a long time. “Now that we hold the activities together, it is possible to continuously develop the system. This event is one about the App in the Google work space under the name “AppSheet”. This is the program or tool that develops the apps in mobile phone or iPad, or tablet. The development is easy without having to write a program. The setting in the system enables the app for readily use. The creation is simple and convenient with the technique called no-code, that is, not having to write any code.”
“When we see that we should develop KKU team to make this app without writing a program, we began by the Hackathon, with about 30 staff members joining as a start. They learned how to develop the application. We hope that in the future this team will teach the others and so the work can be extended to other organizations and make them able to build different applications easily on mobile phone. It is not necessary to know a lot of programs. Now the needs to build digital tools are a lot, until the central administration, especially the digital section cannot cope. Therefore, it is easiest and most convenient to enable everyone to do it on their own, with the support of the digital section and the University. Then we will be able to answer the needs of users more.”
Mr. Edward Satio, Customer Engineer of Google Workplace, APAC, said, “For the past 2 weeks, we’ve seen several ideas. They’re from business users and they’re real business challenges that the university wants to solve. For these 2 weeks, we’re able to come up with a prototype and working solutions to address those challenges. Those challenges come from many areas… one from…..how to improve employees’ performance, campus safety and facilities. This is a very fruitful partnership. We’ve seen very good results coming out of this Hackathon. Out of this Hackathon, solutions can be deployed to production. This app can help the staff and the university to work better with the use of google work space and the app to solve more challenges that we want to solve. And finally, our partnership will grow stronger and stronger.”
Miss Jutharat Khamwan, a professional general work manager of the Division of Central Administration (Left) won the first prize with her team at the Hackathon AppSheet Contest. Jutharat said, “This training let us develop ourselves and can make the prototype app for reporting a problem in the university. We don’t have to be a programmer and can develop the app with the tool called AppSheet in Google and without using any coding.”
Mr. Phasaphan Jinotha, an audiovisual officer of the Central Administration Division (Right) added, “Our application begins by informing all problems of the university in the AppSheet. The problems will be filtered by relevant officers so that they could tackle the situation at once. The informer can check how far his or her matter goes, under the following-up or completed. In the future, we want to develop AI system in which once the matter is informed, it goes directly to the relevant unit. Now everyone can use the AppSheet from Google to improve their work under the digital age.”
Note: Hackathon means urgent building of innovation. The word “Hack” means the group of people who like to think and do something new. “Marathon” means the competition activity that requires a long time. When used together, the term means joining together for doing competitive activities during a period of time and urgently. The period can be 12, 24 or 48 hours.
News / Photos: Jiraporn Prathomchai, Natthawut Phetpraphai