Hackontest is a 24 hour programming competition between teams of three open source software projects. The event takes place at OpenExpo on September 24/25, 2008 in Zurich, Switzerland.
What are the goals of Hackontest?
The idea of the Hackontest event is three-fold:
- First of all, hackers (=smart programmers) of open source projects meet physically during 24h and enhance their software with a certain feature. Thus their Free Software project gets improved in terms of code and the developers have a fun time meeting in one place and competing for some nice prizes.
- Second, users of open source software get the opportunity to file features they've missed in their favorite applications and operating systems. Therefore, during the selection process everyone who registers may file feature requests and others may vote and comment on them.
- And third, visitors of the Hackontest event get the chance to see the commitment and team work with which open source software is created. Like this, the public becomes more aware of the creative processes and the power of collaborative effort by international open source communities.
How does the selection process work?
First, register yourself as a Hackontest user. Second, search for a recorded open source project or file one yourself. Third, submit a feature a team of three programmers can implement during 24 hours. Fourth, vote and comment on existing features. If you're a developer of an open source project you may submit features you'd like to implement. Or agree on implementing already recorded features and write comments e.g. if the requirements are too high or too low.
Then, on August 1st 2008, the Hackontest jury will look at the submitted projects and developers and choose the three participating developer teams - three persons each - according the highest promoted features and the most promising hacker profiles. The elected teams are announced August 10th 2008 on this website.
What happens at the Hackontest competition?
The Hackontest competition starts on September 24, 2008 at 10am and ends 24h hours later. Shortly before the kickoff the jury selects one of the wished features, favorably one of the highest rated. Then the teams of hackers start to implement the feature description within the Hackontest room. This room will be equipped with desks, sofas, Internet, pizza etc. located within the OpenExpo area. Visitors of the open source conference and exhibition OpenExpo may look into the Hackontest room and the screens of the programmers, but they may not enter the room. However, the Hackontest developers may connect to their outside community through chat, SVN, wikis etc. thus enlarging their team size virtually in a unlimited scale.
How are the winners chosen?
By 10am the other day the developers need to commit their newly created source code to a common repository where the jury members may inspect the code. In addition, each project team has to compile/integrate the new feature into the current application version and provide a executable binary version or some web access for the jury so they can test the enhanced software. The jury members have 6 hours to review the code, evaluate the software and make their decision of the winners. Meantime the hackers get some rest in their hotels.
In addition, the audience attending the Hackontest competition appraises the 'soft factors' such as team work and collaboration and thus provides a second vote for the best hacker team. In the end, the winners are elected by the jury considering the public vote. At the final ceremony at 4pm on September 25, 2008 the created features will be demonstrated by the recovered teams and the winners will be awarded.
What do the hackers get for participation?
The participating teams may win cash prizes of USD 1000, 2500 and 5000. Next to fun and competition, the elected open source developers receive a free trip to Zurich, Switzerland, including accommodation and meals from September 23 - 26, 2008 up to USD 1000 each person.
Who is behind Hackontest?
Hackontest is a project of informatica08, organized by the Swiss Open Systems User Groupd /ch/open and sponsored by Google. The competition is invented and coordinated by Matthias Stuermer and supported by Leslie Hawthorn, Hannes Gassert, Emanuel Indermuehle and Stefan Sicher. The organizers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Is this Hackontest web application open source?
Of course! It's released under the GNU GPL v3 and available for download directly from the SVN repository. The web application is based on the open source PHP framework Vida.
Are there Hackontest banners?
Yes, there are a couple of different sizes and texts. If you wish another one, let us know.
Hackontest Logo as SVG (vector graphic)