Day Zero Introductory Hack talk. Presented at the .Astronomy8 Conference, 20th – 23rd June 2016, Pembroke College, University of Oxford, UK
What makes a good Hack?
Lessons from .Astronomy and Random Hacks of Kindness (RHoK)
a "hack" is a small project that solves
one problem, designed and executed
as quickly as possible…
But it’s not all about being able to
write code well…
Can be technical, artistic, web-based.
(It can be utterly bonkers, e.g. a play)
What is a “hack"?
The “hack day” is all about
collaborative ideas and being
creative. The best hack days have
a diverse mix of people…
Tips for hack day…
1. Decide on a hack project or decide who you want to work with
2. You don’t have to pitch a hack idea. Contribute to others
3. Don’t be afraid to tell people what you can (or can’t) do
4. Don’t dwell on what you can’t do
5. Love thy neighbour: you might be the person they need to solve their
problem, and vice versa
6. Ask everyone…. about everything,
7. Buddy up with dotastro veterans. They are your mentors.
8. But be selfish: work out what you want to get out of the day
9. Welcome newbies. Some people may float for a bit before settling.
Use google docs or better still, pen and paper!
10. Planning and discussions should be pitched at the least experienced
hacker. Be aware of the overwhelmed.
11. Keep hacks simple. Aim for something you can demonstrate
12. Use sticky notes, Slack & existing web tools
13. Ask other groups for suggestions when you get stuck
14. You don’t have to come up with a hack idea
15. Keep your eye on the prize! FAME & GLORY!
16. Embrace the silliness and have fun
Favourite hack tools…
Slack is *the* communications tool for hackathons. It’s the easiest way to
share everything with your teams #awesomwhackproject. It’s channel based
so you can stay connected with other hack projects and it integrates
beautifully with loads of other tools
The best bit… it’s private and archivable. Which means that (unlike Twitter)
in 6-12 months time when you want to check on the progress of a hack you
don’t have to filter the crap in your twitter feed…
LightTable & CodePen
CartoDB & LeafletJS