Nathan Tutchton (on the right)

In Go Code Colorado, an annual hackathon competition the first statewide effort of its kind, teams are challenged to transform public data into useful business insights. The potential of public data is boundless, which makes competing in Go Code Colorado even more challenging for people with great ideas like Nathan Tutchton, a graduate student in the Information and Communications Technology program at University College.

“It’s all about leveraging the public data made available to everyone in order to do cool things that’s good for business owners,” he said. “We’re mapping carbon storage and then generating Ethereum tokens that represent the carbon negative action someone has taken.”

Ethereum tokens act as a form of currency, or digital assets, built on top of the Ethereum blockchain. With a background in natural resource ecology and software development, Nathan combined his passions to cultivate his project and the idea landed his team a win in the first round of Go Code Colorado. Today, Nathan works full-time, pursues coursework at University College, and works upwards of 30 hours a week to prepare for the final round of Go Code Colorado on June 7.

As part of the perks of the competition, the teams have received mentorship and advice from leaders in the field, including representatives from Twitter and House of Genius, a start-up incubator in Boulder. Nathan’s University College experience also helped him refine his business skills that have proven useful in the competition.

“The program helps fill in the knowledge gaps,” he said. “Turns out business concepts are super important during a hackathon.”

Ten finalists, including Nathan and his team, will present their final product and business insights in front of hundreds of people and judges on June 7 at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. The finalists are competing based on innovation/impact, implementation, quality, and presentation for the top prize of $15,000, provided to launch the business idea. For more information on Go Code Colorado, visit gocode.colorado.gov.

Like it? Tweet it!