How it started
Once every few months our devevening events become a codefest, that is the assembled developers are given a simple problem they have to solve - the last one was to build a fully automated tic-tac-toe player to play against other peoples players. In 2 hours the 16 attendees had built 8 or so players, then they played against each other and the ultimate winner decided in a head to head challenge. Some developed these players on their own, others teamed up, some even pair programmed their player.
This made me think about what could be achieved by a bigger group over a longer time frame.
I don't think tic-tac-toe would ever change the way we live (except in the film war games), but what about if the problems were real-world problems from organisations that normally may not ever have the budget to build the sort of systems that most developers build in their spare time?
How it works
The idea then behind hack48 is simple, we get a big group of developers and a few charity/community organisations together. Lock them all in a building for a weekend and see what amazing stuff can be built.
Throw in some food, caffeine and the chance to work with some cool developers at an amazing location, who knows what will happen.
Each charity gets a chance to talk to the attendees, outlining what they do and what sort of real world problems they face.
The developers/ teams then go off and have a weekend to build working prototypes of solutions they think can solve these problems.
Once the time is up each team has to pitch their idea (dragon den style) to the charities or a judging panel who choose the project they think can help them out the most.
For more information on the 2012 event
What we need
If you are a software/web/mobile developer or designer, dba,code monkey, web hobbyist from ANY platform background, then hack48 could be a great place to extend your knowledge and network in an amazing environment, drop us a message or follow @devfourgood.