Developers in the UK will battle it out for a $5,000 (£3,140) prize in London this weekend as a world-renowned hackathon comes to the UK for the first time.

The TechCrunch Disrupt Hackathon, usually held in San Francisco, California, is run by startup publication TechCrunch in conjunction with online coding instructor, Makers Academy.

During the hackathon, being held at Old Billingsgate in the City of London, developers and engineers will be tasked with creating innovative apps over a 20-hour period, starting at 12:30pm on Saturday.

Teams are expected to work through the night so that they can get their projects to a working concept stage.

At the end of the event, teams will be asked to make a 60-second pitch to a panel of judges.

Evgeny Shadchnev Makers Academy CEO said hackathons such as this help raise the profile of coding, while enabling the best developers of the future to get to know each other.

“At Makers we train people how to code in 12 weeks, in some cases taking them quite literally from coding zero to hero,” said Shadchnev. “To join us students have to pass through a rigorous selection process and then work as if their lives depended on it to keep up with the high standard we expect over the following three months.

“As such we feel great synergy with hackathons: they are the ultimate test of a coder’s skills.”

Margherita Serino, a Makers Academy student taking part in the hackathon, said: “A hackathon is like a work out for the skills I have learnt at Makers Academy over the last few weeks.

“The hackathon helps me understand how it might feel to work in the professional world of coding, with multiple complex problems to fix under tough time pressures, so as well as being a really fun way to spend a weekend the hackathon could actually help make me more skilled and employable too.”

The hackathon is being held ahead of the TechCrunch Disrupt conference, which starts next Monday in London.

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