Hack24 2016 is complete! Did you enjoy it? We certainly did!
The weekend of 19th/20th March 2016 saw upwards of 130 hackers camp out in the most iconic building in Nottingham, the Nottingham Council House. Hack24 had the run of the whole building (well, not quite, as evidenced in the Superteam's video) for the entire weekend and a lot of fun was had by all.
We were very privileged this year to have the backing and support of the city's council for Hack24, and Councillor Nick McDonald kicked off proceedings by welcoming everyone to the venue, complete with taking a selfie on stage and live-tweeting it, and later started the hack at midday with an air-horn.
Challenges this year were put forward by Cronofy, Blenheim Chalcot, Esendex, Artificial Minds, MHR, Packed Pixels and Pusher, with a best video prize supplied by Tech Nottingham. 40 teams formed and hacked, and many entered their hacks into more than one challenge, increasing their chances of winning one of the awesome prizes on offer.
There were lots of new additions to Hack24 this year, including $100 of free AWS credits for each hacker, courtesy of the lovely folk at Amazon Web Services. We are thrilled that they chose to support Hack24 in this way, and hope that the free credits came in useful for the hackers!
The Hack24 volunteers were a 15 strong team of helpfulness this year, keeping hackers happy, fed, watered and entertained. 3pm on the Saturday saw a surprise birthday for one unsuspecting hacker - it wasn't his birthday, he was chosen at random from the list of attendees. Volunteers donned party hats, and danced around him to Mexican mariachi music with a pinata and a cake.
There were so many memorable moments at Hack24 this year, including a number of talented hackers making use of the grand piano next to the dining room - huge thanks to Jake Turton, Amy Dickens and Tom Goodman for making organiser Emma's weekend! And Hack24 wouldn't be complete without some dancing from Olu :)
This year, along with headline sponsor Cronofy, Hack24 decided to raise money for local charity Framework. Cronofy donated money for each team that entered their challenge (£140 in total!), and Jenni Brown baked 170 cupcakes which were delicious, and raised an additional £133.36, which Hack24 will match-fund, bringing the cupcake total to £266.72. Hack24 also sold a number of limited edition Hack24 hoodies, with all profits (£296.85) going to Framework, which brings the grand total raised so far to a whopping £703.57! Good work everyone!
Saturday evening saw Hack24 Family Fortunes resurrected, along with Pointless, with Andrew Seward once more donning a bright pink jacket and gold sparkly tie in the name of entertainment, and some much coveted limited edition Hack24 hoodies up for grabs as prizes.
Sunday morning arrived with a hearty breakfast served, and then it was eyes down until hacking stopped at midday, marked once again by the air-horn. Hackers had two hours to make and submit a video of their hack, and then it was lunch and downtime before the awards ceremony at 5pm.
Everyone gathered in the ballroom for the awards ceremony (with excellent interval music chosen by Jonathan Relf) and after a brief introduction by Andrew, each of the challenge sponsors announced the winner of their challenge and presented them with their prizes, and the winning video submissions were played on screen, to much hilarity. Huge congratulations to all the winners - it really was incredibly difficult this year for our judges to decide - all entries to the hacks were of a fantastically high standard.
Hack24 over and many people headed to Das Kino for ping pong and drinks, hosted by UNiDAYs. A glass of wine was exactly what was needed after an exhausting but exhilarating weekend. Huge thanks to all involved: hackers, staff and sponsors. We couldn’t have done it without you.
See you next year!
Special thanks (in no particular order):
Hack24 Volunteers: Adrian Bean, Alastair Reilly, Anika Weiss, Chris Smith, Dianna Wright, Jack Thorley, Jenni Brown, Jonathan Relf, Julie Dobbs, Karl Bagci, Lindsey Relf, Nick Walker, Parminder Sehmbi, Pritpaul Sehmbi, Shaun Hare
Sponsors: Adam Bird (Cronofy), Garry Shutler (Cronofy), Gemma Green (Blenheim Chalcot), Mitul Sudra (Blenheim Chalcot), Sam Wessel (Esendex), Alex Lea (Esendex), Alex Sutherland (Artificial Minds), Anton Roe (MHR), Matt Relf (Packed Pixels), Jack Franklin (Pusher), Olia Dukova (Pusher), Vivan Kumar (Pusher), Jamie Huskisson (JH), Justian Blount (Cordius), Sarah Crawford (Union Square), Claire Hodgson (Union Square), David Hall (Amazon Web Services), Joe Nash (formerly of Braintree), Dom Finn (North 51), Sabrina Munns (UNiDAYS)
Design: Tom Jepson
Catering: Faye Vincent & team (Truffle Catering)
Hackbot creation: Dave Wood