Hakathon (written by James Allingham from Community+)

South Africa Summer 2013 Blog

Written by: Elli Suzuki

July 8, 2013


Being my first Hackathon I wasn't very sure about what to expect, which showed almost immediately on arrival at Wits. Everyone else had thought of so many good ideas: bringing a second screen to work on and bringing their own coffee mugs, to name a few. I was also pretty worried about the non-existent sleep schedule, as among my group of friends, I am that person who always wants to go to bed early at parties. I really like my beauty sleep. All of that said, however, I coped really well and managed to get by with only an hour sleep throughout the event. 

My team, Community+, and I had set some pretty ambitious targets for the Hakathon, as suggested by our tech-lead Mustafa. We wanted to have a full working prototype, with a finished user interface and connection to our servers. Unfortunately due to a combination of technical issues with Git-Hub and the large amount time spent eating birthday cake (Mustafa's birthday was on the first day of the Hackathon), we were not able to complete our database goals. That said, thanks to a major increase in productivity on the second day, when we had no more birthday cake to eat and had given up on Git-Hub, we were able to get a pretty good user interface and front end working. I'd like to thank our tech mentor, Toby Kurien, without whom, I do not think that even our front end or user interface would have been satisfactorily done.

The Hackathon, despite our slow start was a success and was very enjoyable. It was a good first Hackathon and I can see my self having another one someday... once I have recovered from the lack of sleep!