North Carolina Research Triangle Hackathon March 12-14, 2018

The UNC Curriculum in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology and NCBI will host a data science hackathon from March 12-14, 2018 on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Projects addressed during the hackathon will involve general bioinformatics and genomic analyses in addition to text, image, and sequence processing.

This event is for researchers, including students and postdocs, who have already engaged in the use of large datasets or in the development of pipelines for analyses from high-throughput experiments. Some projects may involve other non-scientific developers, mathematicians, or librarians.

To be considered for the event, you must apply and be able to travel to the UNC campus in Chapel Hill (see details below).  Applications are due Monday, February 12th, 2017 by 11:59 pm ET.

The hackathon will consist of five to eight teams of approximately six individuals. These teams will build pipelines and tools to analyze large datasets within a cloud infrastructure. Potential subjects for this iteration include:

  • A pipeline to repair badly assembled genomic regions with additional data
  • Causal associations from metabolite data
  • High-throughput automated drug discovery: A pipeline to build, test and analyze the biochemical properties of small chemical ligands
  • An online database and visualization tool for 3D chromatin structure
  • A neural network approach for filament classification
  • Capsule Networks for improving protein secondary structure prediction accuracy
  • Graphical User Interface for gene expression calculated on the fly from raw data
  • Analysis of agricultural calorimetry experiments

Please see the application form for more details and additional projects.  The project list will continue to evolve and will be updated on the application form.


After a brief organizational session, teams will spend three days addressing a challenging set of scientific problems related to a group of datasets. Participants will analyze and combine datasets to work on these problems.


Datasets will come from public repositories or will be supplied by the project lead. During the hackathon, participants will have an opportunity to include other datasets and tools for analysis.  Please note, if you use your own data during the hackathon, we ask that you submit it to a public database within six months of the end of the event.


All pipelines and other scripts, software and programs generated in this hackathon will be added to a public GitHub repository. Manuscripts describing the design and usage of the software tools constructed by each team may be submitted to an appropriate journal such as the F1000Research hackathons channel.


To apply, complete this form (approximately 10 minutes to complete). Applications are due Monday, February 12th, 2018 by 11:59pm EST. Participants will be selected based on the experience and motivation they provide on the form.  Prior participants and applicants are especially encouraged to apply.  The first round of accepted applicants will be notified on February 14th by 10am EST, and have until February 18th at noon EST to confirm their participation.

If you confirm, please make sure it is highly likely you can attend, as confirming and not attending prevents other data scientists from attending this event.  Please include a monitored email address, in case there are follow-up questions.

Note: Participants will need to bring their own laptop to this program. A working knowledge of scripting (e.g., Shell, Python, R) is necessary to be successful in this event. Employment of higher level scripting or programming languages may also be useful. Applicants must be willing to commit to all three days of the event.

No financial support for travel, lodging or meals is available for this event.

Also note that the hackathon may extend into the evening hours on Monday and/or Tuesday. Please make any necessary arrangements to accommodate this possibility.

Please contact with any questions.

Venue: UNC Chapel Hill campus

Additional Projects: If you have an additional project you would like to see added to the form, please submit it here.

One thought on “North Carolina Research Triangle Hackathon March 12-14, 2018

  1. Pingback: North Carolina Research Triangle Hackathon March 12-14, 2018 – Science

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