Hack’n Jill’s Gender-Equal Hackathon Returned Last Weekend in NYC for ‘Hacksgiving’

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The Plug & Play Team had quite the busy weekend: Gregg covered Educause in Colorado, Dan was at MozFest, Deborah was at AngelHack London, and I was at Hack’n Jill here in New York City! Hack’n Jill strives to bring an equal number of men and women together for a day of hacking at their events, and they succeeded again for Hacksgiving (a Thanksgiving pun, naturally). 

 

Hack’n Jill kicked off on Friday, November 9th at the Etsy HQ in the quiant neighborhood of DUMBO Brooklyn with overnight hacking accomodations courtesy of NYU Poly Dumbo nearby. I was joined by evangelists from SendGrid, Mashery, Spotify, and OpenShift to help spark ideation, collaboration, and of course fun!

 

Teams resumed work in full force after a good night’s rest (debatable as many worked through the night) on Saturday morning and powered straight down to the wire at 7PM when all demos were due. 

 

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Hackers model our latest swag in the Etsy photobooth – Plug & Play Microfiber Screen Cleaners!


By 7PM on Saturday there were 23 projects submitted in total, most with a twist of social good following the disaster left in Hurricane Sandy’s path just a week prior. There were a lot of great ideas generated, but a few of my favorites included the following:

 

Remote Disaster Response, a multi-platform emergency dashboard (hotline, information center/disaster recovery run by volunteers) created by Raquel Hernandez and Haris Amin which won the Overall Prize at Hack’n Jill.  

 

Legacy, a collaborative and interactive way to tell a senior citizen’s life story. This was created by Shelly Ni and Derek Dahmer, I’d actually really like to use this..now!


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Voluntarily (pictured above) was created by Ana Becker, Alexandra Schieren, Evie Borthwick, Lauri Apple, and Gary Chan. In the team’s own words: “Voluntarily streamlines the information-gathering process. Instead of filling out paper forms that can be lost, damaged, or misread, Voluntarily enables relief workers to instantly collect necessary information using their smartphones. Relief workers can also access CPR information in the event of an emergency.” 

Voluntarily won the Pearson Best Use of API Award for integrating the Nursing & Health Survival Guide API into their robust application. Nice work guys!

 

Spam Art was an interesting application submitted by Ramzi Abdoch, Jackson Lin and “Coob Star”, which basically spams a person’s inbox to look like ASCII art. Check it out here

 

Tranquillity was a crowd favorite. Created by Gene Demo, Josh Greenman, Bilal Quadri, Grant Kot, the application provides users a responsive interface to aid in the writing of poetry. 

 

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Created by Eric Ho and Stanley Wong, Woof (pictured above) gives users the opportunity to send out important messages to loved ones during an emergency. The application also provides useful information from the Nursing & Health Survival Guide API, local news, and even calming music using the Spotify API.  

 

Since it’s Thanksgiving Hacksgiving I’d like to give a big thank you to the Hack’n Jill team for their hard work and for putting on a great event with a positive message. Can’t wait for the next one!

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