Capital One 2018 Software Engineering Winter Summit


2018-01-13   ·   3 min read


I attended the CapitalOne 2018 Software Engineering Winter Summit the past few days. Here's my experience.

Note: I missed the first couple days because I was out of the country.

2018.01.09

Learned about:

  • Machine Learning

    • Jupyter Notebook is really neat
  • Amazon Web Services (AWS)

    • I need to spend more time to understand everything that's going on here
  • Amazon Alexa Skills

    • Most people, including me, ran into technical difficulties and were unable to build an Alexa skill
    • Interesting talk nonetheless

Summit attendees went to a Capitals game.

2018.01.10

Learned about:

  • Bot Development with DialogFlow (in browser)

    • DialogFlow makes it significantly easier to build voice assistants
  • Nessie API

    • CapitalOne's mock banking API
  • Android Development

    • Setting up was an ongoing process; there was always something to download

Had lunch with CapitalOne recruiters

  • Found out that ~450 applied and only 40 were accepted to this summit

Summit attendees went bowling at a fancy place near Georgetown Cupcakes.

2018.01.11

CapitalOne hosted a summit-wide hackathon, where all summiteers got into teams of 5-6 and hacked together something banking-related for the whole day. Most stayed up past 2:00 AM the next day.

I worked with Max, Kyle, Amy, and Melida to build SocialSpend. Max built an iOS app using AR Kit. Kyle and I spent hours being able to read, write, update, and delete data from Firebase but we got it to work eventually. We also restructured the data in Firebase at least 3 times. Kyle, Amy, Melida and I worked on building the desktop website to accompany the iOS app.

2018.01.12

Our team was still working on SocialSpend until ~3:30AM. Later, all teams presented their work. The team that won 1st built an app and chrome extension that helps users make better purchases by showing the hidden costs associated with a purchase (e.g. interest, opportunity costs associated with investing).

Personally I thought the most useful hack was SCRAP.PY. It lets people with no banking information or credit score obtain loans and makes it easy for others to give loans while providing feedback on whether or not it's a good loan to give (using machine learning). This means people who need loans can get them and others can make money by providing loans with a great assurance of being paid back.

The 1st place team won Amazon Echos, but what followed next was a surprise for everyone. Each attendee got to choose from the following:

  • Apple TV
  • Bose Soundlink speakers
  • Beats Powerbeats3
  • Phillips Hue

So everyone got a $150-200 gift. After that surpise, Max said "so we all won". I think we all agreed.

This concluded the CapitalOne 2018 SWE Winter Summit.

Overall Thoughts

It was a fun summit and I learned a lot during the hackathon. I definitely want to attend more of these types of events and will be looking for more of these corporate summits to attend.

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