A Hackathon with Local Social Impact

The Players

  • Event coordinator
  • Project manager
  • Team facilitators
  • Team members
  • Project owners

The Process*

*This is a living process, it will change daily, weekly, each time we do a hackathon, basically, it is under active development.

  1. Select Date and Venue
  2. Application Process
    • Distribute Applications to community
    • Elect finalists
    • Interview finalists
    • Select final winners
  3. Invite team members
  4. Select team leads/facilitators
  5. Divide team members into teams – check for preferences)
  6. Website preparation
    • Determine hosting environments
    • Setup default WP sites
    • Create user accounts for all team members
    • Gather and record all credentials from project owners including:
      • Host/FTP
      • Domain
      • Existing WP.com credentials, if none (for Jetpack access)

The Schedule

Day of Hackathon

Things to Have on Hand:

  • media releases
  • Wifi
  • Hotspots
  • snacks
  • drinks
  • coffee
  • pens, paper, pencils
  • nametags, markers
  • area for project owners to wait for team consultation

Roadmap (Give or Take)

  • 2 months out: Send out apps
  • 1 month out: app deadline
  • 1 week out: content and graphics deadline
  • 1 week before: setup hosting, receive all credentials from project owner
  • 2 nights before: pre-meeting with project owner wrangler and any leads

Lessons Learned From Previous Hackathons:

  • depending on applications, consider working on 1 project with three teams (designers, developers, content) instead of three teams with a few of each of these.
  • Have a chart with milestones for the team for the day of the hackathon. Theme chosen be x time, content added by x, etc
  • Have a project owner wrangler dedicated to the project owners, make sure they know the plan
  • Provide WP101 to project owners
  • Each project owner should only send 1 representative to the hackathon
  • More focus on mobile
  • Observers might distract the team, they  can watch and ask questions at the end of event
  • Project owners need to understand that this is a community effort, not a traditional website development project. By applying, they are becoming part of the community, offering their project to us to help us grow, learn, and develop as a community.

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