June 5th–7th, 2015
We’re proud that this event is part of Young Involved Philadelphia’s State of Young Philadelphia! This unconference and hackathon will bring together technologists, community organizers, entrepreneurs/innovators and sustainability enthusiasts/experts/activists for a weekend-long rapid prototyping session. Ideas presented and discussed at the preceding Friday unconference and Community Needs Assessment provide a starting point for project ideas, but all ideas related to sustainability are welcome. The only restriction is that all work done during the event must be released under an open-source license (or equivalent for non-software projects).
Sign up by 11:59pm 9/18 to get the early-bird special! Combined hackathon/unconference admission $25
- Unconference ($25):
- Community Needs Assessment (free):
- Weekend-long hackathon ($10):
Friday, October 16th:
Detailed schedule forthcoming.
5:30–8:30pm Community Needs Assessment (at YIP Civic Engagement Fair)
WHYY, 150 6th St 19106 This Friday night event will be open to all Philadelphians to come discuss how technology can improve sustainability in our city, generating project ideas for the Apps for Philly Sustainability: Hackathon taking place over the following Saturday and Sunday.
This event will be held at WHYY as part of YIP’s Civic Engagement Fair. Join the conversation on Twitter by following us @codeforphilly and using hashtags #susthack2015 and #soyp15.
Attendees will hear quick pitches from local organization representatives and fellow citizens about available data sets and known potential areas. Presented ideas will be posted and every attendee will be issued a number of “upvote” stickers to affix to their favorite ideas as they mingle around the room. New ideas can be posted by anyone at this time.
Teams will be free to choose to work on whatever they want over the hackathon, but the posted ideas and votes they accumulate provide an easy starting point for building teams.
Saturday, October 17
@ City CoHo (2401 Walnut St.)
9:30am Doors and registration open, breakfast and coffee served.
Walk around and look through the idea placards posted during last night’s community needs assessment and think about what you want to work on
10:30am Opening remarks
Hear an overview of the event and an introduction to civic hacking and hackathons
11:00am Team formation
Hang out next to the placard for your favorite project idea and discover who shares your interest
11:30am Hacking begins!
Find a spot to setup shop with your team and get started. Visit the mentor lounge at any time if you need guidance
01:00pm Lunch served
06:00pm Dinner served
11:00pm Doors closed for the night
Get some sleep!
Sunday, October 18
@ City CoHo (2401 Walnut St. 19103)
10:00am Doors open, breakfast and coffee served
01:00pm Lunch served
03:00pm Presentations begin
Present and/or demo your project to the judges and your co-hackers
05:00pm Doors closed
Data / Resources
Panel of Experts
Who is Code for Philly?
Code for Philly is an open, nonprofit group that helps people in Philly work together to solve problems and improve life through technology. Some of us are programmers or designers, others are makers or problem solvers, a handful are urbanists or journalists, but everyone is a civic hacker. We believe in the power of knowledge — orchestrated by code — to drive transformative and sustainable change in cities. We don’t wait for permission to improve our city because it’s our home to improve. Inclusive, collaborative, and creative, our members develop diverse projects that take on some of Philly’s most pressing issues.
What is a Hackathon?
Simply put, and as the name might suggest, hackathons are hacking marathons. This means that we get together for a weekend to create new projects from the ideation stage to functional (or at least semi-functional) prototypes. It’s also a great excuse to eat food, drink lots of coffee, hang out with friends and meet new people. Friday night begins with a happy hour to socialize a bit and come up with a few project ideas based on problem statements and/or available data. Project ideas are posted along the walls and every attendee gets a number of “upvote” stickers to stick to their favorites as they mingle through the projects. On Saturday morning we hit the ground running with teams self-selecting around favored project ideas from the night before. Teams then have until Sunday afternoon to prototype a solution and put together a brief presentation to present to a panel of experts. The panelists challenge teams to defend their ideas and award available prizes to the most fitting projects, but everyone is encouraged to continue their civic hacking efforts at the weekly Code for Philly hack nights.
Who Should Come? / What if I’m not a coder?
If you’re passionate about Philadelphia, if you think sustainability issues need to be improved, and if you believe in the power of code to facilitate change, you should come! Civic hacking and hackathons benefit from participants of all types of backgrounds and levels of expertise. Technologists with advanced, professional skills can take the lead in project design and development. Intermediate and beginners take on tasks that support their learning and contribute to project advancement. Even those with no technological skills at all can play vital roles in researching, designing, and launching projects. Subject-matter experts are essential to the quality, sustainability, and scalability of a project. Content experts and partner organizations contribute extensive, nuanced knowledge of the subject matter; they help guide and structure a project so that it tackles key needs, creating the greatest possible impact.
What Does Hacking Sustainability Mean?
For this hackathon we’re looking at sustainability more holistically. Code itself might have a limited ability to directly impact these issues, but code can help collect, organize, distribute, and present knowledge. The right knowledge, the right place, and the right time can change everything. Let’s bring technologists and engaged citizens together to build the tools for Philly’s 21st century sustainability infrastructure.
Why is it Important and Why Should I Come?
Nearly everything about how our city operates was established in an era where knowledge was moved around primarily by paper and bureaucracies — what would it look like reimagined with today’s technologies? Philly once revolutionized the world’s concept of city and we now have the opportunity to do it again. As a community, we want to show what we’re capable of doing. We have the wisdom to know what we want and the means to achieve these goals, but most important is that we are able to bring together individual talent for a collective purpose.