Winners of the Design and Hackathon hosted by PCH International with DCU Innovation Campus

Cash Up wins Dublin Design and Hardware Hackathon Weekend

Winners of the Design and Hackathon: Kilian Dolan; Paul Ganly; Adam O’Brien; Aoife Crowley; Kevin Loaec; Alex Beregszaszi; James Foody; Jonny Cosgrove; Pauline O’Callaghan and Andrew Conlon

Ireland’s first multidisciplinary Design and Hardware Hackathon has been one by Cash Up, the team which developed and prototyped a connected cash register over the course of the three-day event which finished last night.

Following on the success of the Hardware Hackathon in September, the weekend event added a focus on design this time around. The event was organised by PCH, the company that designs custom manufacturing solutions for startups and Fortune 500 companies, in partnership with Dublin City University (DCU), Ireland’s University of enterprise, the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) and Web Summit.

Over 100 industrial designers and hardware enthusiasts as well as multiple prototyping equipment providers came together to collaborate from concept stage to final product and ultimately developed a range of innovative hardware solutions with cutting-edge design.

  • First prize went to Cash Up, who developed and prototyped a connected cash register for automated cash management. The team was awarded a €1,500 fund for the continuing development of their product, along with consulting from Each&Other to perfect their design. The team also received three tickets to the Web Summit.
  • Second prize was awarded to City+ which developed a bicycle-powered connected sensor. The team received a €1,000 cash prize for the development of their product and an Autodesk Licence.
  • Third prize was awarded to PillPal who developed a smart pill box to tackle medical non-compliance. The team received a €500 cash prize for the development of their product.

All the cash prizes were sponsored by PCH.

Among the other prototypes developed at the weekend were a control and monitoring system for urban allotments; a sensor to monitor the shelf life of products and a wearable sensor to monitor air quality.

“We want to thank all the participants who came out over 36 hours to participate in this multidisciplinary hackathon,” said PCH Founder and CEO Liam Casey.

“We are very excited to involve industrial design for the first time, and to see such creativity and passion for product innovation. As we all know, design is the key to great products and great brands. When engineers and designers collaborate, you get the greatest innovation, and greatest value for consumers.”

Prof. Brian MacCraith, DCU President said,

“We are very pleased to partner once again with PCH on a hardware hackathon and to welcome for the first time the National College of Art and Design as an important partner in this event. During Web Summit, it is a great time to have a hardware hackathon to raise awareness of the creativity, passion and talent in Ireland. The University has a key role to play in bringing groups together to foster innovation and encourage excitement around the Internet of Things. There is so much opportunity to develop the next generation of connected products, and we want our engineering and design community to join forces so that Ireland can play a leading role in this space.”

The Hackathon began with a number of open workshops open to the public for IoT/hardware equipment including Intel’s Galileo development board. Hackathon participants then pitched ideas to the crowd and attracted attendees to form design and production teams. After the best ideas were voted on, the participants worked together in teams over 36 hours with event partners Radionics hosting a pop-up electronics shop to support the prototyping activity. Mark Hatch, CEO and Co-founder at TechShop, introduced the final pitching sessions.

The Hackathon concluded with a lively panel discussion looking at how design and product development are interlinked. The panel featured key industry leaders, including Liam Casey, Founder and CEO, PCH; Paul Cocksedge, Co-founder, Paul Cocksedge Studio; Yonatan Raz-Fridman, Co-Founder and CEO of Kano and Aisling Hassell, Head of Consumer Experience Airbnb. The discussion was moderated by Ann O’Dea, CEO and Editor-at-Large at Silicon Republic. was at the event. We’ll publish an interview with Liam Casey of PCH later today.


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