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Cloud fuels Space Apps Challenge

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CloudSigma, an international cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider, will provide free, compute resources for 2013’s NASA Space Apps Challenge participants.

By contributing servers, featuring 30 Gb of storage, 2 Gb of RAM and 2 GHz of CPU, and a specially-configured central server, CloudSigma hopes to further participants’ innovation to address today’s top challenges on Earth and in space.

Now in its second year, NASA’s International Space Apps Challenge is the world’s largest, collaborative technology development event for software, hardware, data visualization and mobile apps. With 9,000+ participants (up from 2,000 the year before), this year’s challenges included detecting near Earth objects (NEOs), revisiting how NASA offers data to the public, and more effectively curating how to tell the story of space to the world.

‚”We had about 50 different challenge groups develop their space apps using our cloud,‚” said Robert Jenkins, CloudSigma CEO and co-founder. ‚”Since we have a completely open software layer that lets you configure and deploy whatever you need, we were well suited to provide a flexible cloud platform for this year’s competitors. It’s amazing to see the innovation coming out of this event, and we feel honoured to have been a part of it.‚”

One of the local winners from Rome, Space Cal App, used CloudSigma’s uniquely flexible compute resources to develop an app that combines satellite information to make information more easily accessible on mobile platforms. The Space Cal App team will go into the global pool of the top 20 solutions (five in each category) for further consideration and development.

In a blog post on open.NASA, Nick Skytland, NASA Open Innovation Program Manager, said, ‚”The International Space Apps Challenge was the culmination of months of planning, years of experimentation and thousands and thousands of hours of hard work from people across the globe who share in the excitement of building our collective future. It is a shining example that transparency, participation and collaboration are alive and well at NASA.‚”

The app development took place during a two-day code-a-thon from April 20-21, 2013. Local winners have already been chosen, but judging is ongoing through May to determine overall category winners, which will be announced onspaceappschallenge.org and the open.NASA blog on May 22, 2013.

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