BEIRUT: With all the compatible and reviving development initiatives in technology, the 3rd annual GDG festival excavates its way towards innovation by meeting hundreds of young subtle and vibrant youth who are eager to serve their communities.
On Saturday, the American University of Beirut hosted GDG Devfest 2019, a community-led developer event organized by Google Developer Groups who come from several countries around the world aiming to focus on community building.
“Our goal is to bring developers together to learn and share their expertise with their communities,” the organizers mentioned during the opening. “GDG Coast Lebanon was founded in 2017 by Rayan Al Zahab and Ahmad Zein where Rayan was the first woman to become a google developer expert in the MENA region,” they added.
The biomedical engineer and speaker in DGD Devfest 2019 Alaa Salam emphasized that community building will never be attained unless a robust connection and network is established between young inventors and expert developers. With a benevolent spirit, Salam announced that she’s willing to accept any technological plan or idea devised by subtle young people present in the room.
Sarah Kanaan, a Masters Law student at the Islamic University of Lebanon said: ”I believe that law and technologies are correlated since we can develop laws that protect us through online platforms. We should strive to not only advance the laws but make them accessible to everyone online.”
In order to develop the skills of the youth, organizers set up workshops and sessions like Ethical Hacking Hands-On, Android Design Patterns, Firebase, Authentication, Matta Tensorflow Lite on Microcontrollers Hands-On, Introduction to MLKit in Firebase, Building Safe Artificial Intelligence, The State of Game Development, Becoming a Game Designer, Creating Art for Games, Building a Game in Unreal Engine, and The Game Development Business.
“People participate in our competitions and events to benefit from networking opportunities, money, exposure, and mentorship,” said Farah Chamas, from MIT Enterprise Forum Pan Arab Region, adding: “We teach people about core topics such as the design thinking, strategic financial decisions, digital marketing plan building, scaling, pitching, and implementing.”
The event featured GDG Coast Lebanon, a Google Developer Group (GDG) Coast Lebanon that strives to unite developers in Lebanon under one community. It also invited Women Techmakers Lebanon, a Google's program supporting women in technology by providing visibility, community, and resources for women around the world, along with Beirut's first hackerspace, Lamba Labs, and the Lebanese Game Developers where all Lebanese game developers unite.
“In the near future, a giant number of young electrical engineers will take part in google development if more events like DGD Devfest 2019 are offered to them,” said Christy Dawood, an electrical engineering student at the Lebanese University and one of the attendees in the event.
Google Developer Groups believe that every successful startup brought to the community by youth will forever be entrenched in the archive of the country since their innovations are the initial steps to advancement and community building.
“We are able, as youth and students, to cultivate our academic technological potentials by attending more workshops like DGD Devfest 2019 and meeting people who are willing to adopt what we have,” mentioned Reem Shaddad, an attendee studying management information system.
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