This past weekend marked General Assembly and HPE Haven OnDemand’s first ever Android Hackathon open to current students and alumni of GA. Tasked with creating an Android app with three views and using at least one of Haven OnDemand’s APIs, five teams set out on this journey filled with pizza, tacos, coffee, and even some breakdancing!
The event began Friday night with a casual social mixer followed by a workshop given by the one, and only, Phong. After an interesting, uncontested, breakdancing battle, participants left for the night to get some rack before the long weekend. Hackers arrived early Saturday morning to pitch ideas they wanted to work on and form teams. Once these were set, hackers worked through the weekend overcoming pitfalls, learning a few things here and there about project management and timing, and building some pretty sweet Android apps.
“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” -Alice Walker
SOLA/HACK was a design hackathon I organized, hosted by General Assembly’s downtown L.A. campus. Participants included current students and alumni from General Assembly and USC. The objective of the hackathon was to apply design thinking and UX design principles to issues specific to the South L.A. community, with an eye toward how appropriate uses of technology could be used to help address social, economic, and environmental problems. While technology can be a powerful tool for change (think of the crucial role of cell phones during the Arab Spring uprising), it was stressed that there is not an easy techno-fix to every social problem. So participants were encouraged to look beyond just apps or websites and employ systems-based thinking on their solutions.
Companies across the globe have added hackathons to their roster of annual events to strengthen their corporate community and foster innovation in an engaging and cost-effective way. For employees, participation not only affords them unlimited snacks and beverages throughout the event, but it also bridges the gap between departments, sparks creativity and allows them to work on projects outside of their daily workflow.
Tech companies have begun hosting annual global hackathons and have reaped the benefits of the innovations created—Facebook’s chat feature and OneTravel’s latest groundbreaking mobile feature, Opal, to name a few.
If your company has been toying with the idea of an internal team hackathon, but has no clue where to start, begin with this list of the top five hackathon planning items that every organizer should have on their to-do list. Continue reading →
Students coding for change at IGNITE International Girls Hackathon in Oakland.
When I was awarded the Design For Change fellowship and officially became an Opportunity Fund fellow at General Assembly I felt a deep responsibility along with my excitement. One of the stipulations of the fellowship was to volunteer 100 hours in service to a local organization to teach youth some of the skills I learned in the User Experience Design Immersive.
I felt a responsibility to assist any young person with a similar background as me who wants to pursue a career in technology. I know how isolating it can be to feel under-represented in a field you desperately want to work in. The challenges to entering STEM careers can be discouraging to minority and/or female youth unless they have mentors who they can relate to.
Students coding for change at IGNITE International Girls Hackathon at General Assembly in NYC.
This past weekend, I attended my very first hackathon, the Ignite International Girls Hackathon at General Assembly. The event, part of IGNITE: Women Fueling Science and Technology, sets out to explore the roles of science and technology to advance gender equality in the tech field.
Unlike most first-time hackathon stories, I was not there to code myself.
Instead, I was there as a mentor for the event’s hackers—the incredible ladies of Girls Who Code. The global event called on girl hackers to help create websites or applications to identify, build, or increase access to safe spaces for women and girls—no easy feat.
In May 2014, Shawn Dimantha launched the first US-based chapter of Hacking Health, an organization designed to ignite collaboration between tech creators and healthcare professionals to solve healthcare issues. Shawn has since invited two fellowProduct Management graduates on as co-organizers. Together, they’re on a mission to make an impact in health tech. We caught up with Shawn (left) and Frida (middle) to hear their story.
Remember those all-night cramming sessions in college, when you would overcaffeinate, stay up for days, and muster all the focus you could to finish a paper or prepare for a test? Imagine a room full of computer programmers, developers, visionaries, and marketers doing the same thing for a day, a weekend, or even a full week. Instead of cramming, they are competing to create prototypes that innovate on a theme or improve upon an existing project. It’s called a hackathon, and it is has become a regular part of how technology companies do business. In fact, the power of the hackathon has extended beyond the tech industry into countless other sectors.
Two weekends ago, rabble-rousers from the foodservice industry joined forces with data scientists and design nerds to hack a better future for the dining industry during Food + Tech Connect’s annual Hack// Dining NYC.
Hackathon@HKUST is an annual hackathon in Hong Kong where teams are given the opportunity to propose an idea for a software application of their choice and build a prototype, all within 24 hours. A team of three Web Development Immersive graduates (Leo Tumwattana, Julie Ng, and Mark Cheng) developed “Rock, Paper, Scissors / Textical,” an event organizer app that combines free-flow messaging, calendar structure, and gamification. We were thrilled to hear to that they took home the “Best Innovator Award,” so we sat down to hear more about their experience.
One of the most anticipated tech conferences of the year, TechCrunch Disrupt brings together the greatest minds in tech. At this year’s conference, a group of GA Web Development Immersive alumni took home an award for Best CrunchBase App at Disrupt NY Hackathon. Teammates Kevin McAlear, Tahira Adaya, Kirsten Doyne, Ilias Tsangaris, and Zack Stayman came together to develop their skills and have a “fun, nerdy weekend with friends.”