KDU Computing Department Host Young Students For Big Data Challenge 2017

Mr.Phua Yeong Tsann (right), the Academic Department Head of Computing Department, School of Computing and Creative Media (SCCM) at KDU University College, conducting a workshop for the contestants prior to the actual competition. 
Participants in each group finding solutions during the Big Data Challenge 2017 at Utropolis Glenmarie campus, KDU University College. 
The contestants in each team presenting a solution to the judges by using the data set given. 
A group photo of the top-3 winners with the panel of judges. 
With the arrival of the Digital Era, we might not be fully aware that things like our daily activities, hobbies, interests, the topic we share or discuss with friends and peers online as well as the product we use and the places we go – would actually produce data!

In this regard, Data Science is a way to show how much computing engages with our daily lives and society. A data-rich world has the potential to generate interesting and surprising results, as Data Science provides the techniques, tools and platform to handle and process Big Data.

In order to create some awareness on Big Data and Predictive Analytics among the younger generation, the School of Computing and Creative Media (SCCM) of KDU University College had organised Big Data Challenge 2017 on 11 November 2017, at its flagship campus at Utropolis Glenmarie.

On this day, there were about 30 secondary school students from within the Klang Valley area that gathered at KDU for this competition with the hope to grab the Top-3 cash prizes which ranged from RM300 to RM800. The participating schools were Sri KDI Secondary School, R.E.A.L Schools, SMK Damansara Jaya, SMK Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Shah Alam and Dwi Emas International School.  

Speaking on the initiative of organising this competition event, Ms Sujata Navaratnam, the Programme Leader of Computing Department in SCCM opined, “This event has given the organisers an opportunity to emphasize the existence and importance of Big Data and Predictive Analytics in organisations and operations.”

From the observation, Big Data Challenge 2017 consisted of a hands-on workshop to work on data science where the participants had a comprehensive overview of Big Data ecosystem and how they themselves can actually play an integral role in this ecosystem in the future.

“The participants were enlightened on the impact of big data and got some exposure on how to handle big data.  Not only that, they have gained a hands-on experience in handling big data too,” said Mr.Phua Yeong Tsann, the Academic Department Head of Computing Department, SCCM.

While the contestants in each team presented a solution to the judges by using the data set given, the event saw that participants not only learned the way on how to use data as tools to predict and make decisions, but also got inspiration and enlightenment on the application of Mathematics in data science into the real world.

The panel of judges for this competition was made up of industry experts - Mr. Lim Meng Kooi, Managing Director of Quandatics(M) Sdn Bhd; Ms.Maria Khor, Head of Talent Development at  Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDeC); and Mr.Phua Yeong Tsann.

In a nutshell, this event posed as an eye opener for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) students to understand the importance of actual applications of mathematical techniques. Participants were introduced to these data analytics and Mathematics techniques through some engaging hands-on activities and there were many interesting and fun moments that showed that participants were attentively following the sessions.

As for the results, Dwi Emas International School emerged as the First Prize winner and walked away with RM800 cash prize; Second Prize went to ‘Torpedoes United’ group of SMK Damansara Jaya and bagged RM500; Third Prize was won by ‘Freedom’ group of SMK Damansara Jaya with rewards of RM300.