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SEPTA Invites Local Tech Talent to Weekend 'Hack-A-Thon'

Partnership With Developer Community Aimed at Improving Customer Service

July 31, 2012

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTA is inviting the local tech community create new ways for riders to get transit-related information during a weekend-long "Hack-A-Thon."

SEPTA's in-house IT talent will meet up with private developers at Devnuts in Northern Liberties Aug. 4-5 to work on apps and other online tools that provide riders with additional options for accessing travel updates and other SEPTA-related information.

Those interested in participating can purchase tickets online through "Apps For SEPTA" at http://appsforsepta.org. Tickets are $5, to cover event costs such as food and drinks.

This is the second Hack-A-Thon to be held as part of SEPTA's Developer Network Initiative, which was launched to build partnerships between SEPTA and local tech talent. The program kicked-off with the first Hack-A-Thon, also held at Devnuts, in October 2011.

Michael Zaleski, SEPTA's director of emerging and specialty technology, said the first Hack-A-Thon yielded a number of successful programs utilizing SEPTA data.

"We were very impressed by the level of talent and enthusiasm," Zaleski said. "The community has been very supportive and the response has been nothing but positive."

Zaleski said he is looking forward to the results of the second event, and the new resources that could become available to SEPTA customers.

"These efforts increase the number of communication channels by which riders can get information," Zaleski said. "More channels means more options for riders to choose how they interact with the data."

A panel will review applications created over the weekend, and winners will demonstrate their programs for SEPTA officials on Monday.

A full schedule for this weekend's Hack-A-Thon is available at http://appsforsepta.org.