Welcome to the 1st PHYSICS hackathon!

  • Date November 22, 2022
  • Location Web

PHYSICS is looking for creative developers and experts to design and implement innovative solutions during a unique 3-day online event (22-24 November 2022).

PHYSICS, an EU-funded project under the H2020 program, is developing a toolkit based on the FaaS paradigm. It aims to provide an exciting opportunity for IoT enthusiasts and cybersecurity experts to use PHYSICS testbed to design and develop runtime solutions, opening the door to further high-level research on this topic, or to assess the security and performance level and suggest tailored solutions. The hackathon consists of three challenges, one related to runtime orchestration, one to secured platforms, and one to investigating performance issues of FaaS platforms.

The runtime challenge is looking for applications consuming FaaS functions, available at the PHYSICS testbed or developed specifically for the application, integrating external solutions that allow the orchestration of these functions during runtime for executing the application workflow.

The security challenge looks for an evaluation of the platform vulnerabilities as well as the proposal of easy solutions to be implemented.

The performance challenge looks for the usage of PHYSICS-produced load generators and performance monitors in order to detect performance issues of executed functions as well as enable the mitigation of them through relevant corrective actions.

The hackathon will start with a workshop to introduce the three challenges and what is expected from each of them (22 November, 10:00 CET). Each participant will have Slack access to a set of mentors that will provide technical support and answer any doubts. At the end of the hackathon, participants will share (via Drive) their code (only for the runtime and performance challenges) and a short presentation (for the three challenges) to introduce their idea so it can be evaluated by the judges (24 November, 17:00 CET). Finally, the jury will decide and announce the winner of each challenge.

Registration is mandatory and will be done through Devpost, so participants may remain anonymized but still can be notified about the jury resolution and receive the corresponding prices. Individuals or teams are accepted as participants.

Once registered, participants may indicate in which of the challenges they will be involved. Although recommended, there is no limitation for participating in more than one challenge and winning prizes.

Only registered participants will be access granted to the Slack channel and Drive repository (where they will find the corresponding templates for the presentations).

Only one contribution per participant will be accepted for each of the challenges. In case any participant upload 2 (or more) different contributions to a challenge, only the first one will be accepted for evaluation. However, the same contribution can be updated as many times as needed before the deadline. In this case, only the last one will be evaluated by the jury.


All participants will receive a diploma for their participation and will be invited to share a short video pitch (1-2 minutes) that will be promoted through the project media channels acknowledging their contribution to FaaS and security research arena.

Additionally, winners of each challenge will receive one of the following prizes:

Challenge winner: The winner of each challenge will receive an Amazon voucher of 150€. For registered teams, only one voucher will be provided for the whole team.

Hackathon top winner: An additional Amazon voucher of 50€ will be given to the Challenge winner with a higher score card.

Technical requirements

You will work on your own personal computer, equipped with the necessary software, in order to implement, test and demonstrate your solution.

For the runtime challenge you need to deploy a Openwhisk version in your laptop. There are several ways to do this (Docker composer, Kubernetes cluster, standalone Java, etc.). We recommend using the docker version because you do not need to install additional tools like maven, java, etc., in the laptop and there is a lightweight (lean) version. You can find here the different deployment options for Openwhisk.

We recommend starting from here to be familiar with Openwhisk concepts and test the environment.

You might also need to install the Openwhisk wsk CLI tool to test the environment. You can find information about installation and how to use this client here.

For the performance challenge you must preinstall:

  • The PHYSICS load generator, available as a Node-RED flow[1] to be executed inside a Node-RED server, or as a docker image [2] available to be registered in an existing Openwhisk installation and invoked through the relevant interfaces
  • The PHYSICS Openwhisk Sliding Window monitor node [3] or subflow [4], to be extended with logic that aims at regulating a specific aspect of Openwhisk or the function under monitor, in order to optimize or control its performance. Examples may include changing the Openwhisk cluster size, changing concurrency parameters for the Openwhisk function etc.
  • An available Openwhisk installation is needed at the user side (follow installation instructions in the runtime challenge description).


  • Fabrizio Di Peppo (GFT)
  • George Kousiouris (HUA)
  • Lara López (ATOS)


  • Vasileios Katevas (HUA)
  • Carlos Sanchez (ATOS)

Evaluation criteria

  • Technical Quality

Max. points: 50 – Technical quality of the solution, including design and correctness of operation.

Business Potential

Max. points: 20 – Business perspective of the proposed solution

Innovation and Applicability

Max. points: 30 – Novelty of the proposed solution, problems solved and integration with PHYSICS

[1]. PHYSICS Load Generator Subflow, available at: https://flows.nodered.org/flow/53bf7addb6ef140ab7e9395c9a9feb1b/in/HXSkA2JJLcGA

[2]. PHYSICS Load Generator Image, available at:

[3]. PHYSICS Openwhisk Sliding Window Monitor node, available at:

[4]. PHYSICS Openwhisk Sliding Window Monitor subflow, available at: https://flows.nodered.org/flow/a86475720659b3ed9eb5024052d94b1d/in/HXSkA2JJLcGA


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