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Chatbots, Chatbots Everywhere at India’s 1st Botathon

Haptik, TLabs and Venturesity made large ripples in the coding world when they announced India’s 1st ever Chatbot Hackathon – the Botathon. Hosted at the expansive and comfortable TLabs office in Koramangala, over 100 keen coders, developers and programmers came with a simple objective in mind – blow the competition out of the water with a unique bot feature. Shortlisting, finalizing and inviting the final 100 coders from nearly 700 keen applicants was no easy task. A big S/O to the Venturesity team of Priti, Minakshi, Arpita and Roopa for streamlining an otherwise tough process and ensuring the right candidates were selected and taken through the entire event! You guys rock!


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As organizers and mentors regarding the submissions, we were looking for a simple chatbot idea that is website agnostic and used simple functionalities and could be easily implemented. While we entered the Botathon with certain expectations, we were not ready for the plethora of kickass bots that were about to come our way. No one could have prepared us!


Registration started at 9am on Saturday – within 2 hours the teams had been formed and comfort levels had been reached over tables, armchairs, bean bags and sofas. The coffee was free flowing, the snacks were warm, the AC was at optimum temperature, the right indentations had been made in everyone’s seats – now the ideas needed to flow.


A big S/O to Young-At-Heart 72 year old self taught coder Mr Venkatraman Rao who displayed nth levels of enthusiasm in making his presence known to each coder present, forming a team on his own, providing a sleek healthbot that provided wellness and good living advice and who made a mark on everyone there teaching them to never stop learning!



24 hours disappears in a single sip of coffee when you’re a coder. Before anyone blinked, time for submission had arrived. Our experienced panel of mentors included Aakrit Vaish, Co-Founder Haptik, Jay Sambedu, Oracle aficionado, Pratyush Prasanna, Founder MagicTiger, and Abhimanyu Godara – Tlabs & KPMG. This stellar cast of mentors handheld a lot of enthusiastic yet first time botters through teething issues and basic ground zero problems. Advice was well received by teams from Hyderabad, Jaipur, Bhubaneswar and Chennai who were eager to flex their botting muscles. Their innovative ideas included Moviebot – where booking movie tickets off was eased into a 4 step chat,


CStrikers – Winners

The duo of Swarndeep S Arora and Anshuman Dhamoon took the top prize with their bot that helps its users keep a track of their fitness goals and motivates them to achieve them by analysing their daily calorie intake and suggesting appropriate diet and workout regime.

BroCorp – First Runner-up

Rohin Gopalakrishnan & Arvind Kumar won the hearts of the judges and everyone around them with their focus on customer experience. Their Facebook Messenger bot – BroTender aims to automate and simplify customer interaction at bars and restaurants without the need for the long waits for waiters and bartenders to take the orders. A user can ask the bot for the menu or have it recommend one based on personalized taste in a restaurant. The bot also keeps a track of the user’s favorite meal from a previous order, splits payments with friends and will pay off the bill from the wallet integrated within.

Sven – Second Runner-up

Ganesh Kumar R P & Arvind Thangamani grabbed the 3rd place at the Botathon with their incredibly simple idea for a slack bot(DJ) for the team, using which any team member can request for the song and it plays it for the team. As requests keep coming in, it queues them. the bot also accepts controls like ‘next’, ‘pause’, ‘clear playlist’ to operate on the playlist. Using machine learning to further enhance the experience, the bot also suggests songs to the team based on the songs played thus far.


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Post the presentation and photo session, we said goodbye over beer and delectable bites! Not a bad end to nearly 36 hours of Botting!


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A big congratulations to our winners – enjoy that cash and tech goodies!


Thank you to all our participants for making the Botathon a raging success! We hope to see you at our upcoming events!




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Rohit Gupta

I am Rohit of House Gupta. I excel at retweeting, irk at people calling themselves 'social media experts', love coffee, ardent fan of test cricket, player of the pull shot, hater of emoticons,
'In this life or the next, I shall have a verified Twitter account'.