Great news! I’ve been invited to another hackathon event.
Super excited! These events are fantastic. Basically you have a room full of very talented and imaginative people who are all there to compete in the delivery of a certain product and they only have 2 days to do it. Depending on the competition, the rules vary but the idea is the same. A bunch of talented people who may not normally work together with all the tools to create all the things they normally couldn’t and a support team to help them break down barriers they otherwise would face.
I went to my first hackathon as a competitor last year and although it was a company sponsored event targeted at automating the internal processes we use day to day, we made some very cool things. The resources of other teams were made available for little bits here and there (e.g. if you needed to change a network config, a network guy from the other team would stop what he’s doing and make the change for you real quick) and while I was lucky enough to be on the winning team I felt like I didn’t really contribute much. I don’t really code, I’m just good with sticky tape (i.e. I seem to do well and systems integration and I’m a qualified project manager). So hopefully this is my chance to make up for that.
So, how does this work?
I’m still a little fuzzy on the details, but it looks to be that we come up with some ideas before the comp and submit the proposed ideas before game day. They fly us up to Sydney, we build, we measure, we find the winner. The target is much the same as the last hackathon for the company, save the most hours and win the trophy.
So what have I got?
Well, a little brainstorming with my teammate from last years comp and we’ve got some stuff. I don’t want to say how good we think the stuff is, or how much stuff. But stuff. Just be happy with stuff. To give you an idea of where we’re starting, here’s what we built last time.
Automated Confirmation – of incident resolution confirmation by using a mailout acceptance form. (e.g. “that thing should be fixed, if you still have an issue click here and we’ll help you further.” Rather than 3 days trying to catch them on the phone.)
Automated Contact Center Call Recording – “This call will be recording for training and quality purposes…” yeah by some poor guy who has to manually record each call to a wav file, convert to mp3, upload to a folder, then link to it in a spreadsheet. Many are missed. Not anymore! Calls are all recorded, compressed, catalogued, uploaded, and searchable via a web interface. All of them. At the same time. Thanks NSA for the idea and Oreka for the open sorcery
Where’s the new stuff?
If you want to know what we have this year then, in the spirit of the hackery pokery, I’ve added a coded copy of our brainstorming session HERE for 2 reasons. It’s fun. It’s a good place to keep a copy for later reveal maybe. 😛
No hints on what code I’ve used, but I will say it was hand coded not computer generated and I bet my brain is more powerful than your script 😀