I was at the Internet of Things Hackathon at ROC in Santa Monica last night – day one of two; the first Hackathon I’ve had the pleasure of attending. Though I won’t be joining in on the coding fun this time; just being here is making me smile from ear-to-ear.
So, what the heck is a hackathon? It’s a gathering of coders, business people, and anyone else interested in joining the fun.
Gathered for what you ask? It’s simple, they’re given a task and told to create it. Here’s a short description from the event info . . .
The challenge for this series of hackathons is to craft new ways that the processor and All-In-One PC can be an integral, yet critical part of the daily experience. Create an app that involves an All-In-One PC and mobile phone.
After a few short presentations it was time for the idea share; giving everyone the opportunity to share an idea and ask for specific talents to be on their team. The ideas ranged from emergency apps to education based apps. One such idea was an emergency app that would alert first responders should the users phone come to an abrupt halt – Hmm, could be problematic and very cool.
One of the education apps discussed is based on bringing students and teachers closer together via social. The idea is that the popular social platforms available today are not geared to the relationship between teacher and student.
I’ve met some pretty amazing people tonight with talents ranging from coding to content writing and some UX (User Experience) folks. There’s even some media talent here and they’re not reporting on the event – they’re joining in on the fun! Bruce Reynolds – formerly with the BBC – is going full-throttle toward the finish-line. He’s hoping that his very dynamic team will be hopping on a a flight to Vegas in January. (check out my short post on Bruce here)
Also joining in on the fun is Catherine Clinch with The Huffington Post. Her team of two is working on a really cool concept based on personal safety. Let’s say you have an ex-boyfriend that was a real jerk – so much that you had to get a restraining order against him. This app (coupled with an anklet for the jerk) would tell you when he’s in your zone! It would do all this via your smart-phone. Not that we care about the jerk – but it would also tell him when he’s getting to close so he can back the hell off immediately. I wonder if they can build something in that shocks him if he’s in the zone to long?
For those of you out there that just get a kick out of social dynamics and how a team comes together – this was a real treat. With over ten teams – mostly of individuals that never met; it was something to see. After the forming there was an onslaught of storming; followed by some pretty cool norming. By the end of the night it was all about performing and when day two ends I know they’ll all be sad to be adjourning.
Ok, so maybe only my pals in the project management field will enjoy that one 🙂
For the rest of you; enjoy some fun pics from day 1 of the event. And, send all your best to everyone for day 2!