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May 17, 2014
1. Introduction to Hackathon Why “Hackathon”? The term “Hacker” has been somewhat abused by the media, such that many may now view it as a derogatory term. It has often been used by media to describe criminals who infect systems and breach networks. The reality of the true Hacker, and of the Hackathon couldn't be further from this image. Hacker. Noun. "A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems and stretching their capabilities, as opposed to most users, who prefer to learn only the minimum necessary." - [2] The Hacker Ethic originates from the early days of the computer revolution. To call someone a “Hacker” is viewed as a compliment. The Hacker Ethic centers around the principle that information should be free [as in speech], and that people should have the freedom to repurpose everyday devices in new and unexpected ways. Hacks are novel creations or solutions to problems and the purpose of a Hackathon is to create them. Hacks are not always elegant, and may sometimes be little more than prototypes, but they can be transformative and expose new ways of solving problems or analyzing data. The word “Hackathon” comes from combining the words ‘Hack’ and ‘Marathon’, and implies a long sprint to create something useful in a single event. Why hold a Hackathon? Before you run a Hackathon, it’s useful to think about the purpose behind it. What are you hoping to accomplish? Your goal can be as general as “increase awareness around open data” or more specific, such as “fix at least 10 bugs in software application X”. As well, think about the stakeholders for your event, including attendees, volunteers, sponsors and third parties, and what they might get out the experience or how they might be impacted. For example, you may want your attendees to be inspired or have them learn new skills. You might want a third party, for example the homeless, to benefit. And finally, it’s useful to think about what you will get out of the event. Is it an opportunity to build your community? Perhaps an opportunity to demonstrate leadership or to practice facilitation? Paying attention to what your various stakeholders might get out of the Hackathon and being intentional about people having a positive experience can greatly increase your likelihood of success. Knowing what you want is a large part of getting it. 2. Preparation Assemble a Team People like to help out with causes that they believe in. Involving others in the planning and running of your Hackathon is not only practical, it’s a way to give others an opportunity to contribute. Here are several practical roles for people that will help your Hackathon run smoothly: • Facilitator The person who manages the Hackathon process. • Ringer A participant who understands open data concepts and the technologies involved and who can work on projects and help others to work on their projects. • Room Manager The room manager is someone that people can go to when they are not sure what to do and would like some direction. People who attend may have little or no experience with Hackathons. The room manager is the go-to person for those who do not know what to do or how they can help. • Social Media Manager This person will Tweet and update Facebook and Google+ status for your event. If your organization has its own Twitter or other social media accounts, you may want to consider giving this person temporary access so they can manage the social media tools for the event. Active use of social media during your Hackathon lets others know that your event is happening and allows those who aren’t there in person to participate. We recommend using a Twitter hashtag chosen by the participants for your event, such as #hack2012. Having a dedicated person managing your social media and creating status updates also makes it easy for others to retweet and publicly endorse your event. This spreads the word and increases your impact. You might have other roles that you want filled, as well. Choose a Date Choosing a good date for your Hackathon can have a significant influence on how well it is attended and how much impact it has. Hackathons take concentrated effort over at least one day, so community Hackathons are typically held on weekends when most people are not working. Make sure you choose a date far enough in advance to allow yourself time to promote it to attendees. In addition, we recommend that if possible, you avoid the following when choosing your date: . holiday weekends . politically significant dates, such as elections, especially if you are organizing a government open data Hackathon religious holidays . summer months if possible (it can be challenging to gather together attendees, especially in smaller cities.) . weekends with events already scheduled that will compete with your event for attendees (other Hackathons, ChangeCamps, conferences). Choose a Venue The venue you select should be the right size and style for your event. Hackathons can be held in many different venues, such as pubs, coffee shops or restaurants (if they have a separate space), rooms on campuses, or work areas or boardrooms provided by sponsors. Choose the right style of venue for your event. For example, choosing a pub for a Hackathon where some of your desired participants are underage will not work well. Choose the right size of venue as well. Asking for pre-registration can help in choosing an appropriately-sized venue. It is not always a reliable indicator as some folks do not like to commit or are reluctant to share their email addresses. That said, asking them to register beforehand will give you some idea of how many will attend. You can use a web service such as EventBrite, or you can simply use a Google spreadsheet. It should be possible to find a venue that you can use for free, although this is not always the case. The venue should be located somewhere accessible for most of your attendees. Ideally, it would also be free of access controls (e.g., locked doors). Where this is not possible, make sure that you have clear signage or greeters to make sure everyone can access the venue. You could post your cell number on the signage so your participants can call to be let in. The venue must have a solid Internet connection, preferably with both wired and wireless networking. Where possible create a event specific SSID and Password for the wireless network that is simple to type and write down. A good example would be SSID = Hackathon, Password = sponsor2012. Visit the venue ahead of time and make sure the room and network specifications are up to the challenge. Wireless networks are especially troublesome, so ask to see the access point -- if it looks old/cheap, enquire if you can configure your own more suitable equipment. Ask about outgoing firewalls or network restrictions that could cause problems for developers as they will use ports and network services that may not be used normally. Ports 22, 80 and 443 outbound are especially important to ensure that they are free from blocking/filtering or proxying. Consider where food will go (best in a separate area), and the location of trash bins, tables, etc. Will everyone in your group be able to sit at a table with their laptop, have access to power, talk in groups, and eat? Choose a Time It’s important to choose a timeframe that works for your expected audience. If your Hackathon will run from 9am - 5pm and targets working developers, it may be best to host it on a weekend. This will minimize time conflict with your participants’ employment. Make clear the schedule of your event to participants in advance. If you choose a 9am start time, expect 20% to show up at 10am. Having an itinerary published at event signup will help make sure you can get started earlier. Schedule reception type activities at the beginning of the day to allow for some late arrivals. Choose a Sponsor Unless you have a budget for Hackathons, you will want to find a sponsor for your event to cover your costs. Costs include those for a venue (if you are unable to find a free option), and food. Your sponsor may be able to provide you with a venue for your event. In addition to providing a good working space for your attendees, it’s a good idea to provide plenty of food. Not only will your attendees appreciate the gesture, but you want them to be able to focus on their projects without the distraction of leaving to get food and drinks. For a one-day event starting in the morning, be prepared to provide coffee and pastries in the morning, a nutritious lunch with beverages, and snacks, water and cold beverages through the day. From our experience in various cities in BC, we had 30 attendees on average. We have had as many as 60 and as few as 12. Plan on spending $300 to $400 on food and beverages, depending on the number of attendees to your event. When you talk to prospective sponsors about your event, they may have never heard of Hackathons. They will want to know what to expect, so be prepared to explain a bit about Hackathons as well as about your cause. Before you go to talk to your prospective sponsor, think about how they can benefit from your Hackathon so you can explain to them. Benefits may include: - positive exposure from the event - being associated with open data - being able to meet and talk with the Hackathon attendees - having attention paid to their particular business area - exposure for their open data efforts - having prototype apps created using their data Be sure to let them know that you’d like to thank them publicly for their support, both on your Hackathon web page and via your social media. Sometimes event sponsors are happy to help out but are not comfortable with the more public forms of gratitude such as Twitter and Facebook, so be sure you have their permission to mention them in social media. You want to show thanks in a way that works for them. The types of organizations that are often happy to help out are: - Information Technology vendors - local and provincial governments - local businesses - software development firms - trade associations - educational institutions In some cases, you may find an organization that would like to provide the food, but doesn’t have a venue. In other cases, you may find someone who is willing to provide a venue but not a budget for food. It works fine for you to have two (or more) sponsoring organizations and and recognize them both. Part of the benefit of using sponsors is of course covering the costs. Another benefit is to increase the exposure for your cause, or associate your cause and organization with other organizations. Remember the reputation of your cause and organization will be affected by the host and sponsor you associate with, and vice versa, so choose organizations that are well respected and easy to work with. Be respectful, gracious and professional in your interaction with them. Letting the World Know You will want to promote your event effectively so that you get the mix of attendees you want at your Hackathon. Your Hackathon attendee list will likely develop organically, which is a good approach. However, if there are particular groups you would like to have attend (public servants, citizen advocates, developers, students), you will want to think about where best to reach out to them to be sure they know about the event. There are some tools you could use to promote your event, including: - Twitter - if you are established on Twitter and your Hackathon fits with your normal identity and audience, then use your Twitter account to let the world know. It may be desirable to create a new account and get help from established and relevant Twitter id’s to help you with promotion. For example, if you are organizing a community Hackathon to benefit a community cause, connect with the Twitter mavens in your community and ask them to retweet you and otherwise spread the word. - Facebook - you could create a Facebook page to promote your event. - Blogs - if you are a blogger, then write a post about your event. Brief and succinct are usually good rules of thumb, to be sure the key information is read. Link to registration or other relevant sites from your post. You can also ask others who are connected to the cause for your event to blog about it. - Mailing lists / google groups - Websites - Map - Hackathon web page - Word of mouth - Other organizations - Government officials and representatives. Hackathon Toolkit There are several things to bring with you on the day of the Hackathon, including: - Power bars - so that everyone is able to connect to power with their laptop - Extension cords - to run from the wall outlets to your tables and power bars - Network cables - for use if the wifi is spotty - A quality wifi router - this is a backup if the venue wifi is poor. Do not rely on cheap home gear, as the router will not be up to handling the number of clients at a Hackathon. Choose a router with at least 64MB of ram, and a quality simultaneous dual-band radio. If the venue is large (like a conference hall), consider wireless extenders. - A projector - attendees can connect their laptop and show off their projects at the end of the day. Consider bringing an apple connector if you are expecting lots of Macs in the room. - An extra laptop or two - for the use of any attendees who don’t bring one - Wide painter’s tape - for taping down cords - Water - The link to the web page for the day and relevant materials - Signs for doors - to help your attendees find the venue and contact you if needed - Photo release forms - if you are planning to take pictures, you will want to get permission from your attendees and have them sign a release. 3. The Hackathon Day Setting Up Ideally, you will have a technical person helping you convene the event. Have them arrive early and double check all the critical components. Your technical person will want to complete the following tasks, long before your Hackathon is due to begin (the night before, ideally, or at least early enough in the morning to troubleshoot any problems that occur): a) Check the Network - Determine who is available to support the network. If it goes down, who is available to fix it? - Run a couple basic internet speed tests and make sure there is sufficient bandwidth available. - Make sure there are no HTTP proxies in place, and that the network is unfiltered. - Test that SSH, FTP and any other applications can connect externally. - Make sure quality networking equipment is in use for wifi and get any wireless login credentials. Try to avoid networking configurations that are set up with a web-based login system, as these can cause technical issues. If this is the case, see if you can get a clean line and set up your own wireless router. b) Arrange the work tables - Try to allow for enough spacing to allow both laptops and food/drink at the tables. - Make sure there are enough power outlets (powerbars) at each table. As well, preferably enough wired network jacks at each table in the event they are needed. While the technical details are being sorted out, another organizer will want to be setting up the reception table, food, coffee and snacks. Signage is important. Make sure there are signs that let the participants know that they are at the correct building and that they’ve found the right room. There should be contact information on these signs and if there are access controls (security, locked doors, etc.) in place, someone should be actively monitoring to make sure no one is stuck outside. Don’t rely on a ‘call us when you get here’ system because not everyone will have a mobile phone. Inside the room, use signs, a whiteboard, or a flipchart to communicate relevant information to your attendees, such as the wifi access credentials, website urls, Twitter hashtag for the event, etc. Use text large enough that it can be read across the room. Introduction As people arrive, welcome them and direct them to the area where you’ll be working and where they can find coffee and snacks. If you have a photo release form, this is a good time to hand it out, ask them to sign it and return it to you. People will arrive at various times regardless of the official start time for your Hackathon. We recommend that you start the event on time, only delaying if you don’t think you have enough people to get started. Don’t delay the start more than 15 minutes in order to honour the people who arrived on time. When it’s time to start, you should get the attention of the room and give a brief introduction, being sure to cover the following topics: - your name and why you organized the Hackathon - the title and the theme of the Hackathon - a thank you to the participants for attending, and an assurance it will be a fun day - a thank you to the hosts and sponsors for providing food, space, etc. - an introduction to open data - an overview of the day Optional: Depending on the time available and the number of participants, it is useful to have participants introduce themselves. Ask them to state their name, something about themselves and what brought them to the Hackathon. This breaks the ice a bit and gives people some context as to who is in the room with them. Finally, ask the participants if there are any questions before you get started. Hackathons are a new concept to many people, just as open data is a new concept. People may not know exactly what they will be doing, but at least you can give them some idea of the format, so that they can relax and focus on the next task. Agenda for the Day We recommend a certain flow to a Hackathon. The main components for the day (and the approximate timing) that we recommend are as follows: 9:00 am Introduction 9:30 am Brainstorming 10:30 am Break 11:00 am Pitches 11:30 am Breaking into Groups / Idea Development 12:30 pm Lunch 1:00 pm Solution Development 4:30 pm Show and Tell 5:00 pm Close We have provided an overview of each of the major components below. Brainstorming People often approach problems with preconceived ideas about what’s possible, based on what they know and their experiences to date. This approach is great for survival, but ignores the the realm of knowing called “what you don’t know you don’t know”. The job of the facilitator in this phase is to expand the realm of what’s possible so that participants can generate ideas that they may not have otherwise allowed themselves to contemplate. There is a tendency to be realistic and come up with small, or practical solutions. While this is fine, and simple solutions are often the best solutions, you want to encourage participants explore everything that’s possible to minimize the impact of the self-imposed limitations they walked into the room with. You will want to provide a form or a shared spreadsheet to collect the generated ideas. Google spreadsheets are perfect for this purpose. Explain to the participants that they can enter their ideas into the spreadsheet if they want to, but that they don’t have to. Sometimes people don’t want to record their idea in a public forum, and that’s fine. The form should have descriptive information in the fields that help people think about some of the attributes and potential effects of their idea. Here is an example of what your form could look like: Field Name Description Title Project Title Description Brief description of project Audience Who would benefit from this project and roughly how many people would this represent? Data What data is needed? Where Where is the required data? Past URLs into the data if known. Skills What skills are needed to further this project? Considerations Are there any other considerations? (threats, risks?) Similar Is this project or a similar project being done elsewhere? Provide URLs if possible. Collaborators Who is working on this project? (names, twitter IDs) If you prefer not to say, that’s okay too. Here is a link to the OpenDataBC form: Please feel free to use this as an example; however, if you want to actually use it, be aware that your ideas will end up in the OpenDataBC ideas spreadsheet (and, we request that you only use the OpenDataBC spreadsheet if your event is an OpenDataBC sanctioned event). Important: Let participants know that the spreadsheet is public on the internet. If they don’t want to make their idea public, they may not want to use the tool. Using the tool is not a requirement, it’s just a tool to help develop ideas and record them for those who want to do that. Once you have described the brainstorming process, invite participants to start coming up with ideas. The more ideas, the better, so if a person has more than one they should record them all. Also encourage them to discuss their ideas with their neighbours. Let them know that the brainstorming will take place over the next 30 or so minutes. Remind them that there is coffee and snacks and that at the end of the brainstorming session you will be inviting them to talk about their ideas with the room. Once they have started, ask your room manager to help you wander around the room and chat with people one-on-one to see how they are doing. Different people engage differently when given an opportunity to brainstorm publicly. Some will jump right in and will engage with others around them. Some will want to work on their own. Some will want to work with others but may feel awkward or shy about getting involved with others. The hackathon team members can help by simply going around from team to team or person to person and checking in with them, asking how it’s going, if they have thought of something, etc.. Sometimes a suggestion that people work together or for someone to join a team is all it takes to make someone’s experience of the day much more engaging. A little bit of one-on- one can work wonders for people to get more out of the process. The brainstorming session will often take longer than expected. It takes awhile for people to warm up and for the ideas to start flowing. Remind people to record their ideas and give periodic reminders about how much time they have left. Usually, 30 to 45 minutes is sufficient for folks to be ready to move to the next step. Pitching In the pitching phase, you invite participants to stand up at their tables one by one and share their idea with the room. Remind them that the purpose is to introduce their idea so that they can attract other people to work on their idea with them (hence, the name of this component of the Hackathon ‘pitching’). They don’t have to end up working on that idea for the day, but they should pitch it in such a way that others get the value of their idea, and are inspired. This is an opportunity for you to inject some fun into the Hackathon day, as you encourage your participants to do a really great sales pitch for their ideas. Encourage people to ask questions about the ideas. As facilitator, you should ask questions about ideas if you think of any that might help bring out the value of the idea or that might answer any obvious questions. If people have more than one idea, encourage them to pitch as many as they want. Also, if their idea requires a particular skill to implement (such as graphic design, writing, or data entry), let them know that this is the time to let potential collaborators what’s needed. In addition to deciding which projects to work on for the day, the pitch session is a chance for participants to interact as one large group. People are often nervous about standing up in the room and pitching their idea. It helps if they see other people do it first so the facilitator should have one or two ideas to pitch and any other team members, especially the Ringer, should be prepared to pitch. When everyone who wants to pitch their idea has had a chance to do so, it is time for you as the facilitator invite people to vote with their feet. This means they pick up their belongings and move to the table where the person who pitched the idea they like best and that they want to work on, is sitting. Encourage people to move around and work on the idea they liked. If someone wants to work on their own idea, then they can just stay where they are. Let people know it is okay to work alone if they wish, or in a group. Formulation When people move into their groups, they will be tempted to jump right in and start working on the project. Remind them that they should spend some time thinking about and developing the idea itself before diving into working on it. Suggest that they work on the whiteboards or on paper as a team to develop the idea for an hour or so, perhaps until lunch arrives. The facilitator can also suggest that they focus their idea down to its core so that they can have something to demo to others by the designated show-and-tell time near the end of the day. This stage is a bit chaotic as people find places to work, and that’s fine. The facilitator should walk around the room and watch for folks who are not getting into groups and check in with them to see if they need some encouragement. Some people choose to work alone, and that’s fine, and some people are shy or nervous about getting into a group of strangers and just need a bit of encouragement to do so. Once your attendees move into groups it’s a good idea to encourage them to spend some time thinking and rethinking the proposed idea, now that there are more people involved. This is also when they can split up the work so that everyone has something to do and the project progresses as quickly as possible. Lunch At some point during this stage, lunch should arrive. The facilitator should encourage folks to keep talking and working through lunch, and remind them that they have until 4:30 (or whatever your time for show-and-tell is) to work on their projects. Concentration Concentration is the stage where people are actively working on their projects. Once the teams are working, members of the organizing team can wander around the room and check on the teams, answer questions, and work on their own projects. One of the most important tasks of the facilitator and the organizing team is to make sure everyone who wants to participate gets the opportunity to participate. Sometimes at this stage there will still be a few people who are not participating. This may be because they don’t feel they have anything to contribute, or because they are there to watch and don’t want to participate. It’s worthwhile having a quick conversation with them to see if they are in the first camp. If so, you can connect them with one of the groups so they can be part of the project, even if it’s just for idea generation and discussion. If they are in the second camp, where they don’t really want to participate, then let them know it’s fine to observe. Show and Tell The Show-and-Tell section is pretty straightforward. It gives people an opportunity to show what they have worked on and get some feedback from the larger group. In preparation for this stage of the Hackathon, you will want to have the projector set up, and accessible for people to easily connect to with their laptop. When the show-and-tell time arrives, ask folks to finish up with what they are working on and ask for volunteers to show their project. Have your projector ready, and ask folks to come up to the front of the room one by one (or group by group) and show what they have worked on. The facilitator should encourage questions and be prepared to ask some questions of their own. People are often keen to show what they have done but again, it’s totally voluntary. If someone has worked on something but isn’t comfortable showing it the facilitator can offer to show it for them, but since most projects have been worked on by teams, there will often be at least one person in each group that is comfortable and willing to show it. Show-and-tell can take 30 to 60 minutes depending on the number of attendees. Appreciation At the end of the Hackathon, you have the opportunity to: . thank participants for their generosity - especially if your Hackathon is a weekend event, and they have given up personal time to be there . thank the host and sponsor for providing the space and food (or whatever applies) . thank any data providers . thank any special guests . make your closing remarks For the closing remarks, you can mention the cause that brought you together (“open data” for example) and any upcoming events. Also, let people know where they can get more information about the community. If you have a mailing list or web site, now is the time to let them know about it. Lastly, declare the Hackathon complete. Possible Challenges Sometimes people come to Hackathon events to “headhunt” or recruit people for their companies or projects. If they mention this as their goal, you will likely want to ask them to wait until after the Hackathon is complete so they don’t disrupt the work in progress. If a social event is planned you can suggest that as a better venue to engage to folks about employment opportunities, etc.. Sometimes, you will have participants who are very chatty, and you may find a lot of talking is not conducive to productivity for some of your groups, particularly if tricky developing is underway. If you have more than one space, or a large enough space where separation is possible, you can organize the room(s) to draw the chatty participants away from the developing teams. Clean Up Unless you and your host have an alternative agreement, be sure to leave the room in as good or better condition than when you arrived. Doing so is important for your reputation, your sponsor’s reputation, your cause, and the willingness of your host to allow future events. You may want to ask one or two people before the event begins if they can help, or alternatively, ask for volunteers at the end. Usually, there will be a few people willing to lend a hand in restoring the space. Post Event Social Depending on when your event ends, you may want to plan to go for a social beverage after the event at a local establishment. This can be a great opportunity for your participants to talk some more about their projects and the new possibilities they have invented. After Event Even after your event is technically over, there are still opportunities to connect with your participants. In doing this, you can let other folks who were not able to attend know what happened (and make them wish they hadn’t missed it!). In addition, it’s another opportunity to thank your participants, recognize what they accomplished through their participation and demonstrate progress toward the overall goals of your cause, in this case, open data. Follow up actions we have found successful are: 1) follow up email summary of the event to the larger community 2) follow up tweets 3) follow up blog posts, by yourself and other attendees 4) demonstrations of Hackathon projects in talks and presentations Part B - Hack4Med Specific Guidelines Based on the general introduction about the Hackathon aims, structure, and organization, the following specific guidelines are proposed to adapt the general Hackathon framework to the needs and goals of HOMER project – Pilot A. The Hack4Med specific guidelines will cover the following aspects: 1. Datasets and OD portals 2. Hack4Med objectives 3. Hack4Med digital applications’ key elements 4. Hack4Med projects evaluation: committees and awards 5. Hack4Med Communication 6. Sponsors 1. Datasets and OD Portals Deadline By December, 31st 2013 all territories involved in the Hackathon must have their datasets exposed in OD Portals. Datasets • Each partner participating in the Pilot must have their dataset opened and federated. • Partners have already announced the minimum requirements of their datasets. • Datasets should primarily refer to the 5 themes selected (energy, environment, tourism, culture, agriculture), but further opened datasets can be included (partners can provide further links to open datasets available). • In addition to partners’ datasets, it would be better to include also common datasets of other institutions. • Whenever a partner is not able to provide ready-to-use opened datasets by December, 31st 2013, the development of the digital applications during the Hackathon will be based on opened datasets available at the European level or at the international level (but applications should be focused/related to the country of the partner). OD portals • Partners should have their OD portals in order to expose datasets opened and federated. • Partners without the possibility to have their own OD portal by the end of December 2013 must be ready to host their datasets through other partners OD portal following the 4 reference models: Piedmont, Veneto, CKAN DAC or Corse. Datasets testing • During the period January and February 2014 the datasets will be tested by the partners leaded by Pilot A task leader, according to the technological inputs provided by CSI Piedmont. 2. Call for Ideas Launch • A web-based “Call for ideas” will precede Hackathons and will be launched simultaneously 40 days before the official Hackathon day. Aims: • The “Call for ideas” general aim is to inform potential participants about the Hackathons, the opened datasets available and the goals to be reached during the 1 day. • The “Call for ideas” aims specifically at gathering ideas and proposals online and it will address both potential participants as well as potential users interested in open data. Polling • The ideas and proposals will be voted online during the whole period of opening of the call (40 days) through an open procedure directly by web site visitors (through IdeaScale). • The most voted ideas will be used as a point of reference (priorities) to address the activities and goals of Hackathon participants. However, the outputs of call for ideas are not binding for the participants of the event. 3. Hack4Med digital application Objectives a. Participants compete on: b. technological solutions across project themes (agriculture, culture, environment, tourism, energy) (tech-oriented) c. technological solutions in each project theme (tech-oriented) d. technological solutions oriented to specific problems/needs (user-oriented) • The kind of digital applications to be developed (technological solutions across project themes, in each project theme, or user-driven) will be identified on the basis of the outcomes of the local workshops organized with local (regional) or national stakeholders by the partners involved in Pilot A. • At the end of the Hackathon, in order to access to evaluation for award assignment, participants have to provide ideas, solution design or software beta version. Digital applications key elements • Digital applications developed during the Pilot A will be free and not subject to any copyrights. • Digital applications should be developed to be applied to all devices / cross-platforms. • Digital applications will be developed in English, while the user interface has to be either in English or in English and in the national language. • Every application developed during the Hackathon must be relevant for the territory involved. Hack4Med Date • The Hack4Med will be held on May, 10th or 17th 2014. • Each Hackathon will last minimum 24 hours, from 10 am of Saturday to 10 am on Sunday. • Partners may decide to extend the Hackathon length beyond the minimum up to two days (48 hours), based on budget availability. Participants • Each Hackathon will have no less than 15 participants. • The maximum number of participants is 60 (minimum 1 up to 4 persons per team). • By these 2 criteria partners can set a reasonable level of challenge among the teams and reasonable amount of persons attending the event. • Participants profiles/targets: students (especially those with an IT curriculum), IT professionals and SMEs, designers. Registration to the event • The Hack4Med website will manage the registration of the participants to the Hackathon. • Registrations will be closed when the maximum number of participants will be reached. 4. Hack4Med projects evaluation: committees and awards Local award committee • Each partner will select a local award committee formed by 5 members (included a representative of each partner). • Profiles of the members: a. representatives with different backgrounds (economic, technological, legal, communication backgrounds); b. representatives of different organizations (research and university, public institutions, NGOs, firm association) • The local award committee will assign awards at the national level immediately at the end of the Hackathon day. Transnational award committee: • The winners of the national Hackathons will be evaluated – through the same criteria listed below – by a transnational award committee formed by a representative of each partner involved in the national Hackathons and the HOMER Lead Partner (6 members). • The 5 transnational awards will be assigned during the final Homer conference in Turin (June 2014). Awards • Two levels of awards can be identified: a. national-based awards (5 applications); b. 5 transnational awards related to the 5 themes. • Awards to be assigned at local and transnational level: i. Best theme application (up to 5 awards, 1 for each of the 5 themes: energy, environment, tourism, culture, agriculture) • If not applicable (i.e. not all the themes have been covered by the applications – participants; not all them have been voted as priorities during the “Call for ideas” at the national level), or awards are supported by sponsors, additional awards can refer to: i. Best solution for an identified problem ii. Best under 21’ solution iii. Best woman developer’s solution • Awards can consist in: i. Official project recognition (Homer plaque or medallion) ii. Technology-based or service-based awards (role of sponsors required) iii. Training or job-based award (role of sponsors required) • In absence of sponsored awards, the local committee will assign only official project recognition and a local award that will consist in a trip to Turin for the final Homer conference and transnational awards assignment (for maximum 2 person of the winning team with higher score obtained). Evaluation criteria: • Evaluation criteria (point scale: from 1 to 10 points for each of the listed criteria. Maximum total score: 80) i. Innovativeness in the local context ii. Feasibility in the local context iii. Scalability in the local context iv. Link with open source communities v. Degree of reusability vi. Best accessibility vii. relevance for the local digital market viii. relevance for the relevant PA. 5. Hack4Med Communication • In the HOMER website a specific area for the Hackathons will be created (Hack4Med section / website), in order to collect the “Call for ideas” as well as the whole Hackathon communication activities. • Veneto Region will coordinate and manage the general content, while each involved partner will manage details regarding its own national Hackathon. • The Hack4Med website will be managed in accordance with Agapa. • Social Networks will be also used for the Hack4Med communication. • Each partner will have to disseminate it through its website and the social networks. 6. Sponsors • Sponsors will be admitted to support Hackathons and to offer awards. • Sponsorships will be managed by each partner at the national level. • Sponsors can take part to the evaluation process depending on their expertise.
Venice Italy
21 02
February 21, 2014
An exciting, fast pasted, stimulating event where you turn a crazy cool idea into something real in only 24 hours! It’s like a marathon for makers, hackers, engineers, designers, inventors, crafters, artisans, and more! It’s also about meeting and getting to know cool people in the local community while doing something fun! Why do this? The Interweb is amazing, but meeting a group of like-minded people in person is way better than any social network hangout. We want Tucson’s makers, hackers and creative folks to meet and have some fun building stuff together. The Make-a-thon is a chance to act on that crazy idea you’ve had on the back burner. Or maybe it’s a chance to learn a new skill with one of those “24 hours” books. Do whatever you want because it’s exciting and interesting. What can I accomplish in 24 hours? Depends on the level of awesome you and your team bring to the event! Surprise us, you may surprise yourself! That said, we recommend keeping the scope reasonable. Something simple and working is better than a complex idea that doesn't run. MAKE-A-THON Vs HACKATHON: It's pretty simple. A Hackathon is a software programming event. Last year, we opened the event up a bit and introduced digital hardware and other devices into the mix. And so attendees built things that merged hardware and software. A Make-a-thon, we are including the same group of programmers, engineers and designers as a hackathon. But this year, we want everyone invovled, so we are opening the event to even more creative people with even more skills. Are you great at woodworking? Do you want to work with steel or paint? Form a team with all of those skills, and build something spectacular. Make it functional AND beautiful!
Tucson AZ United States
22 02
February 22, 2014
San Francisco Bay Area nonprofits La Casa de las Madres, the Eviction Defense Collaborative, and Goodwill of San Francisco, San Mateo, and Marin will kick off the event by talking about their missions. Each organization will also share one key challenge it faces that, if addressed, would have a significant positive impact on its ability to fulfill its mission. Hackathon teams will then have 24 hours to come up with their best ideas. Ideas may range from affordable-housing fixes to apps to beautification projects or business ideas that will help the nonprofits fulfill their missions. Really, it’s up to you. We’re confident that putting a bunch of creative people together for a weekend will lead to some innovative solutions. We’ll also have a bunch of different APIs and databases you can work with from the city of San Francisco’s Open Data Portal. You don’t need to have an idea or a team formed before you come to the event. Part of the fun of a hackathon is meeting other people and coming up with your own idea during the event. An idea by itself lives only in the mind of an individual, but an idea shared among many can become reality.
San Francisco CA United States
20 02
February 20, 2014
Open Data Day is a gathering of citizens in cities around the world to write applications, liberate data, create visualizations and publish analyses using open public data to show support for and encourage the adoption open data policies by the world's local, regional and national governments. These hackathons, like small pieces, will be loosely joined by 5 basic principles. It can be as big or as small, as long or as short, as you'd like it. Ottawa's open data community attracts a diverse crowd of people to hackathons, with whole families coming out. In the UK groups have done amazing work getting young and diverse group hacking. Veteran hackers have said it over and over again: Our movement is stronger when it is broader. Want to help organize one in your city and/or participate? Add your name to the relevant city on the wiki. Let's try to keep it to one event per city, build some community and get new people together. Could be a local or global app, a visualization, proposing a standard for common data sets, scraping data from a government website to make it available for others or even creating your own data catalog of government data. Each city's hackathon should do at least one demo, brainstorm, proposal, or anything that it shares in an interactive way with at members of a hackathon in at least one other city. This could be via video stream, skype, by chat... anything but let's get to know one another and share what we are hacking on. There may be some challenges to making this work: timezones, languages, culture... but who cares, we are problem solvers, let's make it work. Again, let's not try to boil the ocean. Let's have a bunch of events, where people care enough to organize them, and try to link them together with a simple short connection/presentation. Above all let's raise some awareness, create something, and have some fun. A lot will be going on. So... expect to: Learn more about open data. Find out how your local and national government could do more to release open data. Engage local non-profits and companies in the uses of open data for the products and missions Meet & network with tons of cool people in your city and around the world. Voice your opinion & share your ideas with the people and media attending. Find out about apps being created, and get to play around with them as well. Help out with parts of the conceptualization, creation, design, advertisement and testing of apps. Conduct an open tutorial sessions around using open data,like learning how to customize google maps to show the data you want to show. Have lots and lots of fun. Anything! Bring your laptops, mobile phones, phasers set to stun, etc. but above all, your energy and your brains! We’re trying to make this event very hands on, so feel free to bring all your wacky geektronics so that you can participate in all the fun. Don't worry if you don’t bring anything since there will still be tons of stuff to do.
Toronto ON Canada
29 03
March 29, 2014
PilotDC is a Pilot-run event. Pilot is a national organization that holds hands-on educational events for high school students. Students form teams, brainstorm ideas, work together to bring one of those ideas to life with technology, and then demo and pitch the apps/websites they created for awards and prizes. We engage the local community by bringing in engineers and designers who mentor these students over the course of a day and help them bring their ideas to life. Through this process students learn how to think creatively, pitch and demo their projects, and more technical skills like how to code and design. Most importantly, they learn how to learn.
Chevy Chase MD United States
22 03
March 22, 2014
HACKBCA Unleash The Next Generation BUILT BY HIGH SCHOOLERS, FOR HIGH SCHOOLERS Spend 24 hours making something totally tubular. Whether that means slinging mad code, producing hard beats, or even hacking together a sentient robot, as long as you make something you can qualify to win prizes! Where? Bergen County Academies High School Hackensack, NJ When? March 22, 2014 at 3:00 PM EST JUDGING: Judging will be based on 1. Creativity 2. Usefulness 3. Polish 4. Technical difficulty PARTICIPATION: The participants must be enrolled in high school at the time of the event. TEAMS: Teams can contain no more than 7 students. SUBMISSION: Each team must submit one submission by 11am on Sunday. If a team does not submit a hack by 11am, they will not be able to demo or qualify for prizes. BEHAVIOUR: Students must stay in the gym and auditorium during the entire event. PRIZES: 1. First Place - Tech Mentorship by VenturePact 3 Pebble Watches 2. Second Place 3. Third Place 4. Best Education App 5. Best App that is Currently Live 6. Most Innovative 7. Tokbox - $200 8. Dwolla - 4 Raspberry Pi Starter Kits 9. Twilio - SparkFun Arduino Inventor kits 10. Best Use of 3D Graphics by Shapeways - $200 Shapeways Giftcard
Hackensack NJ United States
25 04
April 25, 2014
TechRaising - Santa Cruz - April 2014 6:00 PM April 25 through 6:00 PM April 25. Ticketing is done by participant type and limited to ensure a good mix of skills. We encourage you to buy your ticket early and guarantee your spot. Join other developers, designers, entrepreneurs and business people to build those ideas you've been talking about. This event is about collaboration, execution, accomplishment and showing what you've done. Participants will gather on the evening of April 25 and have 90 seconds to pitch their idea for a product, service, or company to the group. After pitches have been completed, everyone will have a chance to dialog with each other and form teams to build the idea over the course of the weekend. The goal is to have something to demo or launch at the end of the weekend. Teams should consist of at least one developer (ideally two or more), one designer, and one business development/marketing person, but can be as large as necessary. Feel free to talk to others about your ideas beforehand, refine them, get buy in, and please come with the intention of embracing others. This will be a learning event and a way to interact with, promote, and nourish the community of entrepreneurs in Santa Cruz. The cost to attend is nominal, just enough to cover basic expenses and make this enjoyable for all. Mentors will interact with teams and share their experience and ideas. This is an opportunity to brainstorm with others who have done it before and iterate on your ideas and products. The Santa Cruz Tech community has been talking a lot about losing businesses and exporting talent over the hill. Let’s join together for a weekend and create things that will demonstrate that we are a thriving entrepreneurial community that is not only talking but also doing. Who should attend? Entrepreneurs Developers Engineers Designers UX experts Business development professionals Marketing professionals Social media peeps Anyone with an idea for a product or startup
Santa Cruz CA United States
14 02
February 14, 2014
HackOut is the first-ever, two-day, LGBT-oriented hackathon presented by StartOut. We are looking for individuals or teams that want to change the way we think by hacking a new demo in one weekend. It’s a great way to meet new friends, other entrepreneurs, investors and incubators. Developers, programmers, coders and geeks of all kind will have access to incredible mentors from leading companies like Facebook and IBM and a complimentary $2,000 credit to start building applications on Google App Engine and Google Compute Engine. Rackspace is also donating more than $24,000 in cloud computing services to the winning teams. Curious Cat Company, Facebook, Google, Heroku, Hirestarter, HomeStart, Launch Marketing, Jones Spross PLLC, KCL Foundation, Mortgage Portfolio Services, Rackspace, Stripe and Thinktiv have kindly agreed to underwrite this event. The first-place winner will also receive $2,500 and an in-kind messaging consulting session from Launch Marketing.Hackathons are an excellent way to merge entrepreneurial spirit with computer programming prowess and product design sensibilities. Students, hackers, programmers, product marketers, and other web enthusiasts can form small teams to create new ventures during the hackathon. Individuals with all levels of experience are welcome to participate, and any viable business idea can form the basis for participants’ hacks. CASH AWARD: The first place winner will receive a $2,500 cash prize from StartOut. CLOUD COMPUTING AWARDS: 1. $24,000 in Rackspace Cloud credits for a 12-month period for the winning teams. A. $1,000/month for First Place B. $500/month for Second and Third Place C. $250/month for Honorable Mentions 2. Google Cloud Platform is offering developers $2,000 of credit to start building applications on Google App Engine and Google Compute Engine during the hackathon weekend. This is available to every team, but you must register one week before to use the Google Cloud credits during HackOut. MARKETING CONSULTING AWARD: The first-place winning team will receive a half-day messaging session focused on refining key messages for their company, which can be leveraged as they secure funding, develop partnerships, grow their customer base and more. For more information email [email protected] or check out the links below: HackOut Agenda Frequently Asked Questions HackOut Rules HackOut Speakers, Mentors & Judges EVENT DETAILS: WHEN: Saturday, February 15th from 9am to midnight and Sunday, February 16th from 7am to 7pm WHERE: Capital Factory, in downtown Austin in the Omni Hotel Building HACKOUT RULES & CODE OF CONDUCT: Hack out is to help inspire entrepreneurship and a path towards future startups. A place where imaginative developers go to meet others and build! 1. New Code: We all start coding at the same time. Prior to this time you may work on your design, logo, wireframes, idea validation, digital mockups, you name it. But no coding can be done beforehand. 2. Code Review: Winning teams will be subject to a code-review at some point following the event. This will be to ensure everything was built at the hackathon. 3. Hack away: Feel free to use any tools, tricks, gems, shortcuts, or workarounds you’ve discovered over the years to help you build quickly. Use any frameworks, hosting service, etc., you please, but final submissions must be made using the platform provided. 4. Ownership and IP: Teams have full ownership of everything they build at our events and are free to do with it as they wish. 5. Team Size: Teams of up to 5 humans are allowed. 6. What to Build: Create a prototype of a solution to a problem that can’t be easily found anywhere else. 7. Submissions: Participants need to to register for a free account on Challenge Post in order to submit the final version of their project by 1:00pm of the second day. Each participant should have received a promo code for Google Cloud Platforms through the confirmation email. If you have not received your promo code, please email [email protected] And Remember…It’s a hackathon! Use whatever languages or hacks you have in your arsenal. Show us hardware. Show us new concepts. Show us anything you’d like. HackOut Agenda DAY 1: 8:00am: Doors Open to Sponsors / Sponsor Table Setup 9:00am: Doors Open to Attendees 10:00am: Welcome to HackOut / Team Formation 11:00am: Hackathon begins 12:00pm: Lunch is served 7:00pm: Dinner is served 7:00pm – Midnight: Keep hacking… DAY 2: 7:00am: Doors Open 8:00am: Breakfast is served 12:00pm: Lunch is served 1:00pm: Hackathon ends / Submission due 2:00pm – 4:30pm: Demos and presentations 5:00pm: Winners are announced 5:30pm – 7:00pm: Cocktail Hour / You’ve survived… let’s celebrate!
Austin TX United States
19 09
September 19, 2013
The best ideas for businesses come from identifying problems with the status quo. Despite the tremendous amount of technological progress that we have lauded ourselves for in the 21st century, many things are the same as they were in the 20th. It is our goal to identify a list of the top 20 elements of the human experience that are the ripest for disruptive change – and we would like your help! We will be announcing the 20over20 on the evening of Wednesday September 18th. Pre-selected teams will then have 18 hours to decide which problem they intend to tackle. The hackathon will begin in earnest at 12pm on September 19th and last until 4pm on September 22nd. Teams will be expected to give a 20 minute presentation followed by 10 minutes of Q&A on their projects in front of the judges. The winner will be announced after judges have had time to deliberate. The 20 over 20 is a crowd-sourced attempt to identify these innovative laggards. Once we have compiled our list, we will publish it on this site and then hold a hack-a-thon with major cash and in-kind prizes for those who are brave enough to try to address one of the 20.
Dallas TX United States
28 02
February 28, 2014
The Xtreme Hackathon is a 48hr event for innovators, designers and entrepreneurs. At the X HACKS people join forces and engage in collaborative computer programming in order to innovate the world of outdoor sports and activities. The goal is to introduce new technologies and concepts that enhance the outdoor experience. X HACKS are themed based on the season of the hackathon. This winter the theme is Winter Sports! You can hack together apps for ski/snowboarding, wearable tech hacks, community and social networking hacks, etc. At the Xtreme Hackathon you will be able to: 1. Hit The Slopes (For inspiration or testing) 2. Hack away all night 3. Win prizes from our sponsors We will be posting the prizes soon, lift tickets and for equipment rentals are not included in the general admission. Get the lift tickets or the lift and equipment ticket if you need gear. IF YOU NEED TRANSPORTATION, you can get Transportation + Lift + Lodging for around $224 directly from Belleayre here: X Hacks Schedule: Saturday March 1st 8:00 AM: Doors open 8:15 AM: Breakfast 8:30 AM: Intro and Welcome 9:00 AM: Share you idea, recruit a team! (1 min each) 10:00 AM: Hacking and skiing/boarding begins 1:00 PM: Lunch 1:15 PM: Tutorials on building Stuff 2:30 PM: Workshops by sponsors (optional) 3:00 PM: Workshops by sponsors (optional) 4:00 PM: Workshops by sponsors (optional) 4:00 PM: LIFTS CLOSE 5:00 PM: Dinner 7:00 PM: Snacks Rest of the night: Hacking Sunday March 2nd 8:15 AM: Breakfast is served 8:30 AM: Status report 9:00 AM: LIFTS OPEN 10:00 AM: Status update & word from sponsors. 12:00 PM: Finishing touches on hack & presentations 1:00 PM: Lunch 4:00 PM Hack submission closed / LIFTS CLOSE 4:15 PM: Words from X Hacks 4:30 PM: Presentations (3 min each) 5:15 PM: Closing remarks & Drinks 5:30 PM: Winners are announced X Hacks Rules: 1. Code All projects must be programmed at X Hacks. Code must be fresh and not pasted from previous projects. Frameworks (like wordpress, bootstrap, angular js, processing/arduino etc.) or APIs (google,facebook, instagram,foursquare, twitter, etc.) to speed up development are highly encouraged. Make sure you list which frameworks were used. Prior to X Hacks you may work on your logo, wireframes, design, idea validation, mockups, you name it. But no coding beforehand. 2. Code Review Hacker teams will be subject to a code-review to ensure everything was built at the hackathon. 3. Remember this is a hack! Feel free to use any frameworks, hosting service, languages, tools, workarounds, tricks or shortcuts you’ve discovered over the years to help you build quicker. 4. Teams you must have at least one other person in your team to participate, no robots allowed as your only teammate. Ideal team size is 3-4 people. Robots, androids and other “chatarras” can tag along if they really want. 5. What to Build Execute a unique idea around our theme; community, health, education and business. 6. Intellectual Property Ownership of I.P. and code belongs to the team that created it. Your team has full ownership of your product and are free to do as they wish with it. 7. Submissions All Submissions will be due 2 Hours before the team demos. 8. Last and Most Important Rule HAVE FUN! It’s X Hacks! A chance to experiment, collaborate and socialize for the sake of creativity and innovation.
Highmount NY United States