NBCUniversal shares its hit hackathon formula

By Brian Steiner, Contributing Writer

On the heels of recent hackathons in New York, Orlando, and London, NBCUniversal’s Media Labs division believes it has set up a new mechanism for tapping into energy and ideas from outside the corporation’s walls.

sanjay-nbcu“We have established a successful formula for our hackathons,” says Sanjay Macwan, NBCUniversal Media Labs’ senior vice president and chief technology officer, right. “With each event, we continue to learn more about the local tech communities.”

The hackathons are one responsibility of Media Labs, an innovation team that helps develop and deploy new technologies within the company, a $25.4 billion division of Comcast Corp. responsible for theme parks, a movie studio, and several broadcast and cable networks. The weekend-long events attract dozens of software engineers and designers interested in developing novel approaches to issues NBCUniversal cares about.

More than 130 participants took part in the London event earlier this month, which carried the theme “The Future of Content Creation, Distribution and Monetization in a Connected World.” Those attending had the opportunity to compete for more than £10,000 in cash and prizes.

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