AT&T—in partnership with Rensselaer, University at Albany, TechConnex (an affiliate for the Center for Economic Growth), Tech Valley Center of Gravity, Saratoga TechOUT, Hudson Valley Tech Meetup, New York BizLab, Beahive, Tech Valley Mobile Developers Network, Accelerate 518, and Hack Upstate—last month launched the AT&T Tech Valley Civic App Challenge.

This two-month “virtual hackathon” challenges the region’s most innovative talent to build and deliver mobile apps and services that serve community needs. The challenge, facilitated by Hack Upstate, will run until May 1. Coders, designers, entrepreneurs, and technologists can register for the challenge and get more information.

Top winners will receive prizes totaling $18,000 in cash, which will be announced on May 14.

To learn more about the challenge and to offer an opportunity to ask questions, pitch civic app ideas, look for a team to join, network, and seek advice on civic apps, a “check-in” and open day of hacking event will be held Saturday, April 18, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Tech Valley Center of Gravity, 35 4th St., in Troy. The event is free and open to all interested members of the business and tech communities, area students, and entrepreneurs.

The check-in and open day of hacking event offers a forum to connect and discuss progress with facilitators and for participants to pitch app concepts, share app ideas, discuss tools they’re using, and seek assistance on problems they’re having and/or foresee encountering. It also provides participants a place to openly work on their civic app for the challenge. All attendees will receive commemorative civic app challenge items, and a complementary catered lunch will be provided.

In addition, the check-in event will provide attendees an opportunity to discuss their apps or network with regional technology professionals, experts, and venture capitalists who have agreed to attend the event to act as mentors for the day. In addition, various judges from the challenge will be in attendance to talk with the participants.

Register for the event.

Read more about the challenge.

Interested persons can follow the challenge on Twitter using the hashtag #TechValleyATT.