Coding in a castle: A SumUp hackathon review

The hackathon is a very important event since it provides time for our global technology team to come together, despite the distances and different time zones.

In the last edition, more than 40 engineers from our Berlin, Cologne, Kiev, Sofia and Sao Paulo offices, came together to work on exciting projects.

What could be a better venue for a hacking week than a castle in Beesenstedt, Germany, equipped with good Internet and delicious meals and drinks?! Check it out.

Here's what happened.


In the first day, as a way to understand better all the cool stuff our colleagues from different locations and platforms are working hard on, we started with presentations to share knowledge and look at the future. People shared from all different perspectives, from web and platform development to infrastructure and operations.

After the presentations, smaller groups were formed to discuss ideas and select the best ones to pitch. We ended up with a great list of projects to choose from.


Next day, we teamed up to get it off the scratch! Here's some projects we have worked on:

  • Price recommendations based on trained data

  • Detecting data from onboarding documents using OCR

  • Containerize all the things with Docker and Kubernetes

  • Marketplace to connect our merchants with other businesses using our APIs and SDKs

  • Status page to show the availability of our services

  • Creating new microservices in Go

  • Open sourcing a library for creating SVGs in Ruby

  • Test automation with Cucumber


Finally, after couple of days coding, the awesome results were presented.

Integrating into our platform a digital recognition of documents for Onboarding was voted as the best project and the winners are going to choose any conference they want to attend. Pretty cool, right?!

But, in my opinion, everybody got a better prize: the opportunity to get closer to the rest of this great team. Ok, and maybe the delicious food as well.

What's next?

Every week, we have 10% of our time to work on some extra projects (different from our product priority tasks), so the idea is to use this time to also keep the hackathon ideas alive.

And, of course, we can't wait for the next hackathon! Join us!

Milena MayumiMilena is a software engineer based in São Paulo.