Programmer festival buzzes with innovation in Xi'an
China Daily Global     Updated: 2019-10-25

Xi'an's Global Programmers' Festival, which runs from Oct 24 to 25, has attracted computer experts from around the world to showcase how their innovative work is being applied in the real world, and how the software industry as a whole is flourishing, according to city officials.

The third edition of the festival, themed "Connecting the Digits, Coding the Future", is being held at the Xi'an High-tech International Convention Center.

The event is intended to inspire innovative thinking and promote a so-called "programmers' spirit", while contributing to Xi'an's growth as China's "software city", according to the festival's organizers.

Around 1,000 guests were invited to attend the two-day festival including academicians in the software field and representatives from internet and high-tech enterprises such as Huawei, Baidu and Sogou.

In addition to forums and a project signing ceremony, attendees can visit an exhibition of latest scientific and technological achievements from the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

The event's job fair is serving as a platform for professional recruitment and communication. About 80 enterprises in software and information service industries are offering nearly 1,000 positions related to programmers.

Over the past few years, Xi'an's software and information services industries have entered a period of rapid growth, and the Xi'an Hi-tech Industries Development Zone is leading the industrial development.

In 2018, the revenue of the zone in terms of software and information services industries reached 295 billion yuan ($41.6 billion), accounting for 90 percent of the city's revenue in the sector.

Behind the boom is nearly 200,000 practitioners in the zone's software industry. Most of them are working in the Xi'an Software Park, a core area of the zone.

The park, established in 1998, is often referred to as the Silicon Valley of western China.

After 20 years of development, the park has a software park demonstration zone, a new software town, a national service outsourcing base and three sub-parks. In the software town, enterprises, employees and residents enjoy expanding services and welfare. A total of 3,100 apartments have come into use and a new provincial public library in the town will open this year.

In order to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship, a series of incubators have been built in the park, with a combined area of two hectares. The cluster of incubators has fostered over 100 enterprises, providing jobs for more than 2,000 people.

Moreover, the park has formed 11 industrial alliances such as the Xi'an network information security industrial alliance and the Xi'an mobile internet enterprises alliance.

These alliances play a vital role in boosting cooperation among companies and helping enterprises expand their markets, said local officials.

With such a favorable environment, a large number of enterprises have been attracted to the park. These include 31 of world's top 500 enterprises and 38 of China's top 100 software enterprises such as Tencent and Alibaba Cloud Computing.

To date, the park has developed eight characteristic sectors, namely big data, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, integrated circuit design, mobile internet, network security, internet of things and silicon optical chips.

The mobile internet sector has attracted 180 companies and boasts an annual revenue of 13 billion yuan.

In the future, with the aim of building a world-class software park, the local government will continue to create a good environment for the software industry's development.

The planned measures include upgrading facilities and improving recruitment and business environment.

"We will provide more support for enterprises and help them enhance software development capabilities," said local officials. According to the plan, the software and information services industries in the Xi'an Hi-tech Industries Development Zone will generate a total revenue of 500 billion yuan by 2021, with 14.9 billion yuan in export value. The number of practitioners in the field will exceed 300,000.