KC group wins awards in NASA competition post image
Friday | May 24, 2013

KC group wins awards in NASA competition

Written by: Ryan Schneider

Two mobile applications created by a team of Kansas City digital professionals have won global awards in the 2013 NASA International Space Apps Challenge, putting both host site Ingenology and Kansas City’s tech development talent in the global spotlight.

Ingenology, a Kansas City-based digital marketing agency and the digital subsidiary of Salva O'Renick, was just one of three American host sites to earn multiple awards in the three-day event held in April. The Space Apps Challenge focused on teams building and releasing solutions for a variety of challenges related to space exploration, education, and NASA missions. NASA recognized the best solutions submitted in five categories, along with a limited number of honorable mention awards.

Sol, a mobile and tablet app that integrates weather data from the Curiosity rover on Mars with weather data on Earth, was announced by NASA as the winner in the Best Use of Data category. Stellar Stuff, an educational game app highlighting the impact of NASA research on our lives, earned honorable mention recognition in the Galactic Impact category.

“These honors validate what we already knew - we have great tech development talent in Kansas City,” said Ingenology CEO Mark O’Renick. “It proves that through the process of creative, collaborative change, we can compete with anyone across the globe. And that’s what Ingenology is designed to do.” 

Ingenology and Kansas City were just one of two Midwest sites selected to participate in this global challenge, along with more than 75 other locations on seven continents and the International Space Station. The event had more than 9,000 participants, making it the world’s largest hackathon.

The Kansas City team included programmers, designers, project managers and content developers from Salva O’Renick, Ingenology, RareWire, Sprint, Cerner, VML and Waddell & Reed.

“Participating in this event helped showcase the humble, hungry and smart tech development talent we have in Kansas City,” said Ingenology president Mike Wilson. “And now by winning one of just five international awards, we’ve helped put Ingenology and Kansas City on a global stage for the tech development solutions we can create.”

As part of earning one of the five Best in Class awards, Ingenology and Kansas City are receiving national press and government recognition for the Sol app. The White House has honored Sol’s {MAAS} API as an example of its 21st century digital government initiative. In addition, the Sol team will participate in the next Mars mission launch.

The Space Apps Challenge was part of the Open Government Initiative, signed by President Barack Obama. The Initiative ushered in a new era of open and accountable government meant to bridge the gap between the American people and their government. By participating in events like the NASA Space Apps Challenge, citizens can have a direct impact on everyday products and services that are discovered through NASA’s scientific data and research.