Another banner year for the Secretary of State’s “Go Code Colorado”

Guests, contestants and Colorado Secretary of State staff mingled before the start of this year’s Go Code Colorado competition. Left to right, Sean Williams, son of Secretary of State Wayne Williams; Tim Griesmer, legislative director for the SOS; Deputy Secretary of State Suzanne Staiert; Secretary Williams; and Jack Arrowsmith, director of the Statewide Internet Portal Authority. (SOS photo)

This year’s winners of the state’s ultimate techie competition, Go Code Colorado, walked away with $15,000 per team after creating tools that turned government data into useful information on three different fronts, including the tiny house movement.

The final competition was held Thursday at the Seawell Ballroom in Denver. Judges selected three winning teams from nine, which had been whittled down from a competitive field of participants that started with nearly 40 teams made up of more than 260 participants after the kick off in February.

“This year’s finalist teams showed an incredible breadth of ideas for how public data can help business decision makers,” said Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams.

The three winning teams were Carbos from Fort Collins, Adobio from Colorado Springs and Business Incentives from Grand Junction.

When I heard there was a team named Carbos, I initially thought that was the entry about food trucks. Instead Carbos leverages public data and blockchain technology to remove barriers to entry into the carbon offset marketplace.

Andrew Cole, manager of the Secretary of State’s award-winning Go Code Colorado program. (SOS photo)

Business Incentives is built on the premise that grants, tax incentives and loans are out there for entrepreneurs, but they’re hard to find. It aggregates multiple sources in one spot with a simple and easy-to-use interface.

I was fascinated by the Adobio presentation because the guy next door tore down the shed in his backyard and built a three-car garage with an apartment atop it.

It’s not exactly a tiny home, but I’ve always wondered if I qualified to do the same with my garage. Adobio creates a database of building codes, zoning laws, ordinances and individual parcel data that would help me figure that out pretty quickly.

A news release from the Colorado Secretary of State’s office offers more information about the 2018 competition.

Go Code Colorado is a statewide competition to use public data to build useful insights and tools for Colorado businesses. The competition has been housed in the Secretary of State’s office since it was created in 2014. Since then, hundreds of developers, designers, business and marketing professionals, analysts, entrepreneurs and other big thinkers have participated in the award-winning challenge.

It is overseen by SOS staffer Andrew Cole.

Williams mentioned some of the awards, including his favorite, a competition where “software and corporate behhemoths such as Kroger and Fed Ex” were the recipients of the same award as Go Code Colorado.

This year’s 5th annual Go Code Colorado contest ended with three winning teams that turned government data into useful information to streamline projects. (SOS photo)