Navy Hosts Hackathon to ‘Hack a Ship’ in Austin


Hack the MachineThe U.S. Navy is hosting a hackathon Feb. 17-19 in Austin, Texas, at the Pentagon’s new innovation cell at Capital Factory to see if hackers can “hack a ship.”

Called Hack the Machine, the maritime capture the flag game will be one of three activities hosted by the Naval Postgraduate School Center for Cyber Warfare. The Navy will also host two more programs called “Data Science and the Seven Seas” and “Designing Safer Oceans.”

It’s notable that the event will take place at the Capital Factory, the most recent site dubbed an office for the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Unit Experimental (DIUx). Since the transition of administrations there hasn’t been much news from DIUx so it’s good to see the Pentagon’s innovation cell active.

The maritime capture the flag game will be operated much like the ones made popular at Defcon, but this will be to hack a ship, not a cell phone.

The Data Science and the Seven Seas event will offer participants the opportunity to access the Navy’s massive maritime traffic data sets and see if they can “identify anomalous behavior and solve real world problems like human trafficking and piracy,” according to the event posting.

Designing Safer Oceans will look to team up Navy scientists with startups for a “design thinking sprint targeting safer alternatives to GPS for maritime Precision Navigation and Timing,” according to the posting.

It looks like the event will offer a wide range of opportunities to innovators, coders and entrepreneurs.

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