Tech Nottingham Hack24 2018

This time last week we were sat in Nottingham town hall with hundreds of bleary-eyed builders. Builders of tech, not of buildings that is. These are some of the smartest coders, developers, and designers, Nottingham, has to offer. The challenge was, of course, the 3rd Hack24…which true to the Ronseal naming structure, says what it is on the tin. 24 hours to hack something together.

I’ve been to a few hacks before, but this was by far the biggest and best I’ve been to. And the quality of the hacks was next level too. I’ve been in an around tech for a good twenty years (though I cannot code a line). I love the MVP (minimum viable product) methodology, but honestly, some of these hacks looked ready to go live to the public, all within 24hours. The skills in the room were outstanding and I’m really chuffed that we actually attended.

stkrs started producing stickers for Tech Nottingham a few years ago and from then we’ve produced thousands of stickers for the wider Nottingham tech community. With that in mind we wanted to show our support at Hack24, so we sponsored the bar on the Saturday evening, which is our way of buying everyone a drink as a thanks. It was also great to see was our name alongside sponsors like global brands, Microsoft, Experian Capital One & Thomson Reuters. Of course, at events like this, there are other sponsors, some of whom are stkrs customers, Uniday & Codrius to name two. The other sponsors were MHR, Esendex, eLife, Starling Bank, GitHub, Heart Internet and Liberis.

An event like Hack24 is about making something interesting and many of the challenges involved using “tech for good”. Notably winners of the challenges included an app that helps women report abuse, a team built a shop based screen and camera that could communicate with homeless family members just using facial recognition. Another team used the time to build an app that helped homeless people and another team built a payment app that allowed people to round up purchases with the rounding up going to charity. The full list of winners is below.

I truly hope that those people that attened Hack24 go on to build things that make the world a better place, but equally that the experience has helped them to gain new skills, work with new people and have confidence in their wider tech community. Hack24 was brilliant and we’ll be back next year I am sure.

2018  Winners

The MHR Easter Egg Hunt
MHR asked hackers to build a funny, silly or clever Easter egg into any software

The Winning Team: Knit-WiTs – Elsa Bartley, Aimee Gamble-Milner, Nina Limbrick, Rosanna Nichols

The Esendex Help Nottingham Challenge
Esendex challenged hackers to build something to help Nottingham

The Winning Team: Merge Conflicts – Paul Seal, Patrick Kearns, James Studdart, Jamie Taylor

The Experian Learning About Money Challenge
Experian challenged hackers to ‘create a hack to help people understand how money works’

The Winning Team: PorgPowered – Jamie Lord, Matt Lambert, Dan Meza, Nikhil Gokani

The Thomson Reuters Do Good with Data Challenge
Thomson Reuters challenged hackers to tune the power of data, insight and analytics to ‘create something for social good’

The Winning Team: Knit-WiTs – Elsa Bartley, Aimee Gamble-Milner, Nina Limbrick, Rosanna Nichols

The eLife Envision a New Future for Science on the Web Challenge
eLife challenged Hack24 participants to envision a new future for science on the web

The Winning Team: Last Minute – Allon Scotton, Charles Andrews, Richard Hall

The Microsoft AI for Good Challenge
Microsoft’s challenge was to use Microsoft’s Cognitive Services or Azure Bot Service to make the world a better place

The Winning Team: $teamname – Callum Massey, Ammar Haider, Carl Austin, Daniel Childs

The Sounds like UNiDAYS Challenge
In a challenge that was way out of left field, UNiDAYS challenged hackers to come up with a hack that sounds like UNiDAYS

The Winning Team: Merge Conflicts – Paul Seal, Patrick Kearns, James Studdart, Jamie Taylor

Tech Nottingham Bonus Challenge – Best Video
Winning team: [Redacted] – Matt Brunt, James Hodgson, Gareth Jones, Adam Cooper

Github Bonus Challenge – #MyOctocat Contest
Come up with a new design for Octocat – GitHub’s mascot

Winner: Paul Seal

Some of the teams at Hack24.