Why HackerRank's CEO thinks Zip Code Wilmington is shaping the future - Technical.ly Delaware

Software Development

Jan. 25, 2017 12:15 pm

Why HackerRank’s CEO thinks Zip Code Wilmington is shaping the future

Could Vivek Ravisankar's company make computer science degrees obsolete? He shared his vision during a talk at Theatre N.
HackerRank CEO and cofounder Vivek Ravisankar speaks at Theatre N.

HackerRank CEO and cofounder Vivek Ravisankar speaks at Theatre N.

(Photo by Joey Davidson)

HackerRank is huge. The platform connects programmers with potential recruiters as it challenges them with unique problems in order to discern and rank their coding abilities. It’s the largest community of its kind, according to the company.

Cofounder and CEO Vivek Ravisankar flew into Wilmington this week to give a talk at Theatre N that was hosted by development school Zip Code Wilmington. That talk happened last night, and we were in attendance.

Ravisankar offered a lecture and brief Q&A that wound through the history of the platform, his problems building a startup, the importance of finding a good cofounder and the future of HackerRank. On that last note, Ravisankar explained one of the biggest features they’ll soon roll out that will help coders in specific markets like Delaware.

HackerRank is getting ready to introduce Hacker Level.

“We’re launching this system called Hacker Level. It’s going to tell you how good you are in different aspects of software development.” He explained that it will show a coder’s specific talents, and even show them how they’re faring in Delaware, in the United States and even in the world. This will, the company hopes, make it so that recruiters can find the right coder for the right job. For coders, the hope is that they’ll be able to use HackerRank to discern what they do best, who will hire them and for what job.

Ravisankar indicated that, in the opinion of the HackerRank team, every company is going to be a software company. “Tesla,” he explained, “is not a car company. It’s a software company.” He said the same about Ford, Target, Macy’s, JP Morgan Chase and TD Bank. The bet is that these companies are going to need more and more software engineering support, and that’s where HackerRank sees their growth.

“If we’re going to become the standard for people to learn how to code, we want to become the credentialing system of the future,” he said.

This is when Ravisankar turned the talk to disrupting universities.

“I don’t have anything against universities, but I hope that when HackerRank succeeds … people should feel no point in attending universities. What’s the point of spending like $100,000, spending four years and finally getting a job at JP Morgan Chase when you can spend six months or three months at HackerRank, get a credential and join JP Morgan Chase?”


That’s also where Zip Code comes in. Ravisankar noted that Zip Code is an example of a school for coding that he says as a big shaper of the future. That’s great for Wilmington, as the school continues to attract more talent and produce more viable employees.


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