Hackathon: What is it good for?

February 21, 2012 § Leave a comment

I have written about the dual definition of the word Hacker or Hacks. We are planning to have a Hackathon for the conference we are organizing in May. If you have not signed up please sign up we are putting together an awesome panel of guests, talks, workshops and of course a hackathon. We have a bunch of surprise announcements as well to support Building a Sustainable Startup Ecosystem in Iceland. Anyways, I digress, the post was about Hackathon. I think Hackathons are awesome tools to validate a hypothesis. This is the new trend! Check out this Wired.com Article with the title “The Hackathon is on: Pitching and Programming the next Killer App“. It is very interesting to see how VC, Tech Recruiters and Angel investors look at Hackathons as a way to spot talent. Hackathons are the new place for scouting talent as it relates to technology and software. I have also written about how Software is going to be the brain that runs all business and the methods employed in Software related companies can transform traditional businesses. Here is an excerpt from the article which is very interesting to see…
The trend has already spread beyond the conventional tech world. There are women-only hackathons, hackathons for teens, hackathons for college students, hackathons to fight autism, hackathons to improve education, hackathons to help veterans, hackathons to build Occupy Wall Street protest tools, hackathons on clean energy, hackathons on grocery shopping in Vermont, and 14 hackathons to troubleshoot water pollution—footage of which was streamed live from nine cities including Bangalore and Nairobi.”
The stakes are going high as well, the Techcruch Disrupt Hackathon winner gets a whopping $250,000 thats a lot of pizzas and beer. I believe the reason why this trend is starting to take off is because, the infrastructure of software the basic plumbing is starting to work as it was intended and many of the solution providers like Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Foursquare, Google, Amazon, Apple etc are making their software available through Application Programming Interfaces (API) and mashing these different API’s together a team has an awesome chance to serendipitously discover the next GroupMe or whatever, That is the promise of hosting Hackathons. I think I have answered my own question 🙂

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