Date: May 30-31, 2018
Location: ZINC Conference in Novi Sad, Serbia

Are you an open-minded developer who wants to collaborate and create impressive solutions for drones using Artificial Intelligence (AI)? What if we provide you with all the tools for building THE interactive drone experience? What kind of ideas can you come up with to put intelligence onto a flying drone? Interested?! Then the AI4Drones Hackathon is your place to be!

The challenge

Aerotain ( builds interactive drones designed to be used at events. These drones have the capabilities of flying over crowds while providing a live stream of what it sees. The video at the top of this page is a demonstration of our drone today. It contains no intelligence and is manually flown by an operator. Your goal is to come up with ideas to further enhance the drones interaction potential or autonomos flying capacities. How would you like to interact with such a drone? How should it react to your actions? Build new experiences for participants of an event using the tools provided to you, and at the same time help the event to promote itself in the best possible way. Let the intelligence fly!

Your tools

You will be able to use the Bonseyes platform that allows to create AI applications much faster than before. You may also use your standard tools or those that the wider AI community is using. We help you to connect them with data, and our tools for making your neural network work on the drone. Your application can use video, sound, or other sensors you mount on the drone in order to steer the drone's trajectory, perform light effects, or any other actions of your choice. You will also have the possiblity to attach other actuators to the drone.

More Information

The drone will be provided by Aerotain (, one of the world's safest drones that can be touch in flight. The default configuration of the drone consists of a video camera that provides a live video feed. You may bring your own devices that may be mounted on the drone, but the total payload including battery can not exceed 400 Grams. As an example, we will offer assistance and tools to connect a Firefly-RK3399 board to deploy your trained neural network on it.

The winner will be invited to discussions about continued collaboration with Aerotain and the Bonseyes project.

Why Participate

Join the 2-day “AI4Drones” Hackathon and enjoy collaboration and experimentation in a team of data scientists, coders, and hardware engineers.
Together with you, our Bosneyes research and innovation project will explore how to build artificial intelligence for enhancing the experience of event participants and bring mor intelligence into a so far "dumb" device.

You will learn what artificial intelligence is, how to work with real-world data, deep learning, and deplyoment of neural networks on hardware.
Don’t miss the opportunity to get feedback on your work and improve your personal and technical skills that you can later apply in any domain!
Impress the jury of industry professionals and gain prices in a total of 1700 Euro*.

  • Price 1: 1.000 Euro cash + invitations to discuss collaboration with Aerotain and Bonseyes + appearance in communications of
  • Price 2: 500 Euro cash + appearance in communications of
  • Price 3: 200 Euro cash + appearance in communications of

*The prizes are per team not person.


You may, and we encourage to, start working on your ideas and projects prior to the physical event. Also, you may bring your projects and further enhance your results in future AI4Drones hackathons (will be announced on this platform at a later date).

Upfront Webinars

To help you prepare for the Hackathon and kickstart your projects, we offer a series of Webinars.
Participation at these Webinars is encouraged but optional.
We will also provide a minimal set of inputs at the Hackathon itself.

Webinar Schedule (Berlin Time):

  • Tuesday, April 24 at 14:00: Drone Architecture (Roman Ebneter, Aerotain, Switzerland)

    A member of Aerotain will provide an introduction into the drone design. You will learn about the current architecture, the default configuration and how to access data.

    The recording of this webinar is available on Vimeo.
    The slides from this Tutorial can be downloaded here.

  • Tuesday, May 8 at 14:00: Deep Learning

    We suggest to use PyTorch for your Deep Learning tasks if you are not already familiar with another DL Framework.
    We suggest to start with the following Tutorials:
     - PyTorch Tutorial List
     - Deep Learning with PyTorch
     - Learning PyTorch with Examples

    If you are looking for a framework on top of PyTorch we suggest using DeepDIVA which is available throught the Bonseyes Marketplace as well.
  • Tuesday, May 22 at 14:00: Embedded Intelligence

Day 1:

09.00 Door Opening
09.30 Welcome Address
10.00 Tutorials: Hardware Interfaces of the Drone, Deep Learning Pipeline, Deployment of Embedded Intelligence
12.00 Teaming/Matching with Lunch
13.00 Start Hacking
19:30 Dinner
20.00 End of on-site Program

Day 2:

09.00 Pitch Training with Breakfast
12:00 Lunch
16:00 Project Deadline (End Hacking), Demonstration for Jury
18.00 Closing Ceremony and Conference Reception


Q: Is this a Bring-Your-Own-Device Hackathon?

A: Yes, participants have to bring their own devices.

Q: Are there any constraints on the number of team members? 

A: In this iteration of the Bonseyes Hackathon we can at maximum accommodate 20 people. Therefore to offer as many teams as possible, we would restrict on-site team size of 2-3 people. But, you can hook-in people from remote to support you in your work.

Q: Are participants provided accommodation?

A: Yes, you can expect that some accommodation will be provided free of charge. We will have more information on this soon.

Q: Is food provided?

A: The following meals will be included:

 - Lunch First Day / Second Day

 - Dinner First Day

 - Breakfast Second Day

 - Coffee Breaks

Q: Will there be "over-night-coding"?

A: Not on the premise itself because the building will close down overnight.



The Bonseyes Project is co-funded under the agreement for scientific and technological cooperation between the Horizon2020 Program of the European Community and the Swiss State Secretariat for Education, Research, and Innovation SERI.


Hackathon Sponsors


$1,700 in prizes

Price 1

1.000 Euro cash + invitations to discuss collaboration with Aerotain and Bonseyes + appearance in communications of

Price 2

500 Euro cash + appearance in communications of

Price 3

200 Euro cash + appearance in communications of

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:


Participants and Group Formation

The Hackathon addresses data scientists, software and hardware developers of any kind and level of experience. We encourage other specialists to participate, e.g. user experience designers. However, be sure to have at least one developer on your team since you will have to present a functional prototype at the end of the event.

Participants may be individuals who are interested in deep learning, drones, or autonomous flying, as well as companies who offer products or services in these domains. We highly encourage the participation of start-ups and SMEs.

You may build your team or join an existing one already before the Hackathon and, optionally, enlarge your team at the beginning of the Hackathon. The webinars are intended to be a forum for that.

We encourage you to start working on your ideas and projects before the event takes place. The webinars will let you familiarize you with the technologies and tools, and limited online support is offered to help you get going.

How to enter

Please register for the Hackathon by hitting the button "Register for this Hackathon" (look at the right column on this page).


Kurt Tutschku

Kurt Tutschku
Professor at Blekinge Institute of Technology, Sweden

Tim Llewellynn

Tim Llewellynn
CEO of NViso, a premiered company building emotional intelligence, Switzerland

Daniel Meier

Daniel Meier
CEO of Aerotain, the drone company, Switzerland

Judging Criteria

  • Quality of experience
    The overall level of pleasure and satisfaction from the perspective of users that interact with the drone.
  • Elegance
    The elegance of the architectural design from the perspective of experienced system architects and software engineers.

Questions? Email the hackathon manager

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