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Category: ChickTech Seattle

Reflecting on 2016

The beginning of a new year is a good time to look back on the previous 12 months and take stock of everything that happened. Here’s a quick recap of a very busy year:

In 2016, the XPRTs travelled quite a bit. Eric went to CES in Las Vegas, Mark attended MWC in Barcelona, and Bill flew out to IDF16 in Shenzhen.

We also sent a team to Seattle for the first XPRT Women Code-A-Thon, an event we’re very proud to have sponsored and co-hosted along with ChickTech, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the number of women in tech-related fields. The Code-a-thon also served as inspiration for an eight-part video series entitled Women Coding for Change. The series explains the motivation behind the Code-a-thon and profiles several of the participants. If you haven’t watched the videos, check them out. They’re well worth the time.

Speaking of videos, we also published one about Nebula Wolf, the mini-game workload produced through our first collaboration with the North Carolina State Senior Design Center. That experience was promising enough for us to partner with another student team this past fall, which resulted in a virtual reality app that we hope to share with the community in the near future.

Of course, we also continued work on our suite of benchmark tools and related resources. We released TouchXPRT 2016 to the public, published the Exploring TouchXPRT 2016 white paper, and released the TouchXPRT 2016 source code to community members.

In 2016, we unveiled the XPRT Weekly Tech Spotlight, a new way for device vendors and manufacturers to share verified test results with buyers around the world. We put 46 devices in the spotlight throughout the year and published Back-to-School, Black Friday, and Holiday device showcases.

In the last quarter of 2016, we celebrated our most widely-used benchmark, WebXPRT, passing the 100,000-run milestone. WebXPRT is still going strong and is as useful and relevant as ever!

Finally, we ended the year with the exciting news that we’re moving forward with efforts to develop a machine-learning performance evaluation tool. We look forward to engaging with the community in the coming year as we tackle this challenge!

As always, we’re grateful for everyone who’s helped to make the BenchmarkXPRT Development Community a strong, vibrant, and relevant resource for people all around the world. Here’s to a great 2017!

Justin

Introducing “Women Coding for Change”

If you’ve been following this blog, you probably know that we co-hosted the XPRT Women Code-a-thon with ChickTech in March. The event ran smoothly, we got some great ideas for future XPRT workloads, and Jennie gave a recap in “Women develop new perspectives for the XPRTs.”

What you might not have known—until last week—is that the XPRT team brought a video crew with us to Seattle. We’ve spent the last few months building an eight-part video series that tells some of the stories we saw unfold at the XPRT Women Code-a-thon. In “Women Coding for Change,” you’ll meet the code-a-thon’s winners and see their work; learn about the gender gap in tech; and hear stories of mentorship, community, and more.

Today, you can see the series trailer and “The Problem,” which explores the numbers behind the gender disparity and what they mean for all of us. Just go to the YouTube playlist here, and keep an eye out for new videos coming soon.

Sarah

Women develop new perspectives for the XPRTs

Last weekend, we had the great privilege of co-hosting the first XPRT Women Code-a-Thon with the Seattle chapter of ChickTech. We couldn’t be happier with the results!

Our goal was to bring together a group of women and invite them to develop ideas for new device workloads—workloads that we might include in future versions of MobileXPRT and WebXPRT. The 20 participants—some working individually, and others working as teams—not only met that goal, they did a great deal more.

On the coding front, the participants achieved an impressive amount of work in a very short time. Though we awarded only three prizes, everyone generated interesting and useful ideas. Our prizes went to the following people:

1st place: Viveret Steele, for a 3D-modeling workload

2nd place: Annmarie Aidoo, for a geolocation workload

3rd place: Molly Fallen and Alex Trimble, for an audio-enhancement workload

These four people went home with checks, but winning wasn’t what motivated anyone to participate. Everyone was excited about developing software and working with others. The social side of the event proved to be as meaningful as the technical. People talked, formed friendships and mentoring relationships, and discussed seeking other events like this one. Two people said the event changed their lives.

In the weeks ahead, we’ll be sharing some more information about the event. In the meantime, we’re proud to have been part of it.

Jennie Faries

Last week in the XPRTs

We published the XPRT Weekly Tech Spotlight on the Microsoft Surface 3.
We added two new CrXPRT ’15 results.
We added two new MobileXPRT ’13 results.
We added six new WebXPRT ’15 results.

The big weekend is almost here!

A few weeks ago, I talked about the XPRT Women Code-a-Thon. Well, all the work that we and our friends at ChickTech Seattle have done is about to pay off! On Saturday, March 12, dozens of women will go to the Sole Repair Shop in Seattle for two days of coding, good food, and networking opportunities.

The goal of each team at the code-a-thon is to create a new workload that might be included in a future version of WebXPRT or MobileXPRT. Judges will award prizes to the top three workloads: $2,500 for first place, $1,500 for second place, and $1,000 for third place. I can’t wait to see the winning workloads!

We’re very fortunate to have Kristin Toth Smith as the keynote speaker. She is an avid supporter of women in tech, current COO of Dolly, and former CEO of Code Fellows.

It should be a great time for all. If you or anyone you know can get to Seattle this weekend, registration is still open.

Eric

Last week in the XPRTs
We published the XPRT Weekly Tech Spotlight on the ASUS ZenFone 2.
We added one new BatteryXPRT ’14 result.
We added five new WebXPRT ’15 results.

Check out the other XPRTs: