Transportation Data Challenge - Lincoln, 2017

Transportation Data Challenge in Lincoln is associated with the MBDH All-Hands meeting.


Use the hashtag #tdcLincoln to talk about it and share ideas/pictures/feedback. Here are the tweets made during the event.

Slack Channel


Thanks to our Judges:

  1. Ibrahim Demir, Assistant Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  2. Amy Unruh, Developer relations, Google

1st Place: Team KKM

2nd Place: Team Sunny Bike

3rd Place: Team VSL


Recording of the presentations are available here.

Code of Conduct

By participating in this Hackathon, you choose to abide by this Code of Conduct.


This code of conduct serves to ensure that everybody and anybody who wishes to participate is able to do so. Further, it applies to online activities related to the Hackathon, including postings on GitHub, Slack, and other online sites.


Do Not Harass Harassment is any unwelcome or hostile behavior towards another person for any reason. This includes, but is not limited to, offensive verbal comments related to personal characteristics or choices, sexual images or comments, deliberate intimidation, bullying, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of discussion or events, nonconsensual publication of private comments, inappropriate physical contact, or unwelcome sexual attention. Conduct need not be intentional to be harassment.

Respect the Opinions and Abilities of Others

The hackathon is a place for people all of different skill levels and approaches to meet and work together toward common goals. As a result, we do not expect that everybody will share the same opinion. However, we do expect that disagreement is done respectfully.

Additionally, we expect that members will educate others respectfully. To this end, do not assume anybody else’s level of expertise or knowledge. Do not belittle a lack of information, or insist on unnecessary precision. We are all learning, so afford others—as well as yourself—room to grow.

Keep Your Team Open

Except for instances where it would significantly impede productivity, there is always room on a project for one more person. Unless doing so would be counter-productive to the goals of the project, anybody who is interested in a project is allowed to join it.


While this document exists primarily to prevent certain bad behavior, we also believe that our community members should work towards a higher standard. To that end, we strongly encourage the following conduct, though they are considered aspirational rather than necessary.

Build With, Not For

Work to ensure that the community is well-represented in all stages of development. Seek out those who are under-represented, and remove barriers to access. Listen as much—or more—than you speak, and give full consideration to all ideas, even if they seem improbable at first.

Empower, Experiment, and Find a Way for Everybody to Contribute

When more people share their knowledge and skills, they give a project a greater chance to succeed. When somebody shows up with an unusual skill, look for ways to fit them into the team rather than reasons why it wouldn’t work. Experiment with new approaches, and don’t be afraid to try something that might not work.

Attribution: Code for DC


Traffic deaths across the United States increased 14% over the last two years. In 2016, nearly 6,000 pedestrians died – the highest number in more than two decades. Data science collaboration has the potential to reverse this trend – this Challenge aims to do just that.

What is the Challenge?

At Lincoln the National Transportation Data Challenge is a hackathon to build and strengthen collaborative data science projects that advance transportation safety. Students will work in teams in a open and creative thinking format. Mentors will be available to consult with teams and share best practices for data hacking! Travel support and prizes will be sponsored by the Midwest Big Data Hub

Hackathon Focus Areas

Bike/Pedestrian Safety

How might we improve bike/pedestrian safety in our communities?

Category Chair Robert Hoffer, Chief Technology Officer, Satori (

Robert Hoffer is a serial entrepreneur and inventor of several products in the computer and internet industry. As founder of Query Labs he developed one of the first Web based Yellow and White Page directory services products, which launched at Yahoo as Robert co-founded ActiveBuddy which launched SmarterChild - the first commercial instant messaging bot. Robert has several patents in the field of instant messaging. He currently not only advises companies in their technology strategies but continues to develop and innovate in the tech space. His focus will be on the application of streaming data aggregation uniquely relevant to private/public transportation data sets towards implementable life-saving interventions.

Weather/Emergency Response

Category Chair Amy Unruh, Developer relations, Google

Amy Unruh is a developer programs engineer for the Google Cloud Platform, with a focus on machine learning and data analytics as well as other Cloud Platform technologies. Amy has an academic background in CS/AI and has also worked at several startups, done industrial R&D, and published a book on App Engine. Amy’s focus during the challenge will be on leveraging the latest utility in open source and donated computing resources (including DataScience Platform, TensorFlow, Big Query, Satori, and other big data tools) to address hypotheses leading towards life saving interventions from the vast streaming and archival data, such as Waze and weather, available for municipalities.

Hackathon format

Teams of participants (up to 4) will hack available datasets to produce meaningful insights along the two thematic areas listed above. The projects should demonstrate data-driven decision making with meaningful insights for social and technological impact. Mentors will be available onsite to help brainstorm project ideas and suggest ways to accomplish tangible outcomes. There are no other restrictions on project types and their outcomes. Got creativity?

Wireless network access will be provided. So you may choose to bring your own laptops.

Available Datasets and Resources


Activity Time Location
Check-in @ Hilton Omaha lobby 7:45 a.m. Hilton Omaha lobby
Bus leaves from Hilton Omaha 8:00 a.m. Leaves from Hilton Omaha
Registration and Breakfast 9:00 - 9:30 a.m Nebraska Transportation Center - Lincoln
Form teams and setup projects 9:30 - 10:30 a.m Nebraska Transportation Center - Lincoln
Working Lunch 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. Nebraska Transportation Center - Lincoln
Keep hacking… 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. Nebraska Transportation Center - Lincoln
Project Demonstrations and Prizes 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. Nebraska Transportation Center - Lincoln
Bus Pickup @ Lincoln 5:00 p.m Nebraska Transportation Center - Lincoln


Bus Pickup Details


Note: The hotel is in Omaha, but the Hackathon is in Lincoln. A bus service will be provided between Hilton Omaha and the event in Lincoln.

For phone reservations, use the group code BDM.
Click here for online reservations, and select Attendee from the drop down menu.

Hilton Omaha Google Maps Link:

Upcoming Community Events

Washington DC (Nov 9) Save the Date for the Challenge Finale Event, featuring the projects, outputs, and outcomes of the Challenge