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Unearthing our high-tech future

Unearthed logo

A marathon 54-hour innovation event held on the weekend of March 20 – 22 will benefit the resources industry and help build the State’s growing technology sector. Launching the 2015 Unearthed Hackathon at Perth’s Resource Innovation and Information Technology (RIIT) centre, Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Marmion said such events were extending Western Australia’s global mining leadership. RIIT is a not-for-profit company aiming to build resources sector technology start-ups.

“The State Government backed the Western Australian event with $25,000 in sponsorship because we’re backing the jobs that the rapidly growing tech sector is generating,” Mr Marmion said. “Sustainability and growth means not just extracting our minerals and energy but mining our human resources as well, building on innovation and exporting that expertise around the world.”

Unearthed saw more than 70 computer software developers solving production and technology challenges set by the resources industry. The inaugural 2014 event produced 18 high-quality prototypes over the weekend. “In the past year one of those prototypes – designed to save the Western Australian iron ore industry more than $100 million per year – has gone on to advanced development, with the designers forming a company and working with a technology accelerator towards commercialisation,” the Minister said.

“I am excited to see an event that delivers real results, especially with technologies which increase efficiency and reduce costs – both crucial factors in the competitive world of mines and petroleum.”

8 of the 15 teams have been asked to make follow-up presentations of their solutions to companies who were at the event.

Unearthed was so successful in 2014 it will be held in four States this year.

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