Hackathon Planning 101

In July 2015, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore organised Hackathon@SG, the largest local programming competition yet. Over 1,100 participants, as young as five, tapped government datasets and technology like virtual reality gadgets and wearables to crack urban challenges.

Here are their tips to organise a major tech tinkering event.
Hackathon Planning 101

Keep it real

Work with other government agencies to pinpoint real-life problems and make meaningful datasets available. This increases the chance that practical solutions come about. The challenges should be clear and succinct, but not too narrow or open-ended.

Feed the body and mind

Whether it’s coffee, energy drinks or pizza, make sure your participants are well fed and hydrated. Provide good relaxation options, such as late-night massages, for those who need to catch a break. Spaces to take naps or get inspired are definite pluses – bean bags and rooms to practise pitching ideas were some of the event’s biggest hits.

Invite tech partners

Participants might not be familiar with the latest technology, so team up with technology vendors to offer pre-hackathon training and on-site mentors to guide them in refining their ideas.

Watch these tips in action:
Hack It! Hackathon@SG and MIT Hacking Medicine@SG 2015 Event Highlights

Check out the solutions presented:
Hackathon@SG 2015 Winners and Finalists

    Sep 3, 2015
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