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Xi'an to hold Global Programmers' Festival in October

By Zhang Yangfei | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2018-09-11 19:52

The city of Xi'an, Northwest China's Shaanxi province, will put programmers in the spotlight and boost its software industry by launching the Global Programmers' Festival next month.

Jointly organized by Xi'an municipal government and the China Information Technology Industry Federation (CITIF), the event will draw leaders in the software industry from home and abroad, and representatives from renowned software companies and scientific research institutes.

With the theme, Coding Society, it will include forums and roundtable talks where leaders, academicians and other experts in the internet industry, such as Mark Russinovich, CTO of Microsoft Azure, and Vishal Sikka, former CEO of Infosys, will be sharing ideas.

The two-day event is expected to attract over 20,000 people attending in person and another 2 million participants via the internet.

Silicon Valley in the US, Bangalore in India, Beijing and Nanjing will co-host the event via virtual platforms, enabling programmers all over the world to join the event.

"The festival aims to boost innovation and digital economy, and speed up the development of a modern industrial system led by innovation and entrepreneurship," said Zhong Hongjiang, Party Committee Secretary of the Xi'an Hi-tech Industries Development Zone.

According to Zhong, the Xi'an Hi-tech Industries Development Zone is expected to generate revenue of 500 billion yuan ($73 billion) in the software industry by 2021, and aims to become a world-class science and technology zone.

The event will help make Xi'an become a city well-known for its hard technology and software, and build a good ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship, he said.

Two papers will be released at the opening ceremony: a blue paper of reviews and the prospect of software industry development since reform and opening-up, and an index of industry and information of countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative.

A special Outstanding Programmer Award will be given to 10 individuals in honor of their potential and contributions to the industry. The winners of a coding competition, which began in August, will be revealed on Oct 25.

Gao Sumei, executive secretary of CITIF, said China now has over 6 million programmers and they are using data and algorithms to make our lives better and pushing industry transformation but without acknowledgement.

"By holding such a festival, we hope to stimulate their creativity, raise their voices and provide them a broader platform to represent and develop themselves," she said.

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