Geophysics Hackathon 2013

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The geophysics hack event was a big success. You can read a bit about it on the Agile blog. There are pictures on Flickr.

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Posts about this event

Thank you sponsors and supporters!

Most of the rest of this post is obsolete and will be archived. Soon.


The hackathon cometh...

What is a hackathon?

Hackathon is an event where people come together to collaboratively build and launch mobile or web apps aimed at solving a particular problem. They usually work in small groups of up-to five people over a day or two, the aim is to come up with a prototype at the end of the hackathon.
Guide to organizing a successful hackathon

The Unsolved Problems Unsession 2013 in Canada in May identified error and uncertainty as a big unsolved problem, or perhaps a class of problems: capturing, calculating, computing with, reducing, etc.

The basic idea of the hackathon is to build free geophysics mobile apps or web-based applications we can show to the rest of the world — "Here's what creative scientists can do in 2 days".

The format will be an optional contest between teams of 4. Competing teams are eligible for prizes and glory. Please use to register and stay up to date with the event.

Individuals or teams are welcome to come on a non-competitive basis, to learn, explore, or just to have fun.

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We're excited to be hosted by one of the most energetic start-up havens in Houston. We will be at START Houston, 1121 Delano Street, Houston.


Sat and Sun, 21 and 22 September (the weekend right before the SEG Annual Meeting)

How much

The hackathon is free to attend. Thank you to our generous sponsors for making this possible.

How to attend

Please sign up at Thank you!

Remote attendance

You don't have to be in the room to play! We will be in a Google Hangout all weekend — watch this space.

In the meantime, please sign up at


These are completely hypothetical project ideas. Please steal/adapt/change/remove or add to them. They are not prescriptive, just intended to get the creative juices flowing. If you already have an idea, yours is probably better. Probably definitely.

  • Sequence stratigraphy calibration app used to tie events to absolute geologic time and to help interpret systems tracts
  • Compute a seismic quality or 'interpretation reliability' indicator from a seismic line or volume.
  • Compute likely spatial and temporal resolution limits from some basic acquisition and/or stack info about a volume.
  • Explore ways to display location uncertainty, e.g. of a set of points, lines, or polys on a map.
  • Find and connect literature about uncertainty and geoscience using online bibliographic data.
  • Stochastic solutions to the Aki-Richards equation (or Zoeppritz equations if you're feeling brave) with fuzzy input.
  • Uncertain or stochastic wavelet extraction
  • Fuzzy well ties, or 2D forward models.
  • What does a real spectrum look like, given STFT limitations, or Gabor uncertainty?
  • Dynamic Bayesian decision tree or value of information widget with fuzzy inputs.
  • Fit statistical distributions to actual distributions, to help select the right one.
  • Compute volumetrics with fuzzy inputs. Stochastic tools exist; are there other ways?
  • Stochastic time value of money.

Reading and inspiration

Here are some things you might like to read, to understand a bit about the theme. Please add more!


Please see