The fundamentals behind a successful hackathon

 PennApps hackathon was the largest college hackathon in the world and it took place this past weekend. It produced some of the best/most entertaining hacks that I’ve seen at any hackathon: Remote controlled battle bots, Automatic Wifi Authentication for facebook friends, enlarging media seamlessly from one to multiple mobile screens, app that messages you if you forget to put required items in your backpack, exploring neighborhoods from the comfort of your couch with augmented reality, just to name a few.

Looking back, I would say that this hackathon was a smashing success, and I’m sure the other sponsors would say the same. From my perspective as a developer evangelist, here’s why PennApps turned out to be a legendary hackathon and what we can learn from it:

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AngelHack Los Angeles Winter 2012

Here at TokBox, we’ve been supporting AngelHack since its infancy. This year it’s no different, and this time we sponsored at a city bursting with startup energy, Los Angeles.

The event is hosted at a spacious and comfortable co-working space called Cross Campus, a place to inspire “creative collisions through space design, learning platforms, and extraordinary events.” If you are an entrepreneur you might want to check it out!

The event started off with sponsor pitches and API talks. Singly provides SDK for developers to get their app connected quickly and easily with services like Facebook, Twitter, Google, just to name a few. Gimbal provides a mobile context awareness platform that includes image recognition and geofencing. TokBox provides a video chat API (called OpenTok), and for demo I live coded a web and iOS app that video chatted with each other.

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Change the World at the 2012 Box Hackathon

It’s time to take control of your work. Ever notice yourself doing repetitive tasks and wished there was a way to automate? Wish there was an easier way to communicate and collaborate with co-workers?

Let’s do something about it.

On August 11, there will be a hackathon. In two days, you can be the change you wish to see in your workplace by putting together a mobile or web application that your users can use to increase their productivity and happiness at work.

Come in with your computer and your ideas, and learn how technology can help you accomplish your tasks. There will be representatives from different companies to help you and give you prizes for your efforts to improve the workplace.

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Apply to demo at TechCrunch Disrupt SF

TokBox friends, today is your lucky day because we’re sending one deserving startup team to TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco to demo their OpenTok-powered goods between September 8-12, 2012.

Startup Alley, TC Disrupt’s demo area, is set aside just for newly launched startups. Participants get 2 tickets to the full conference and one complimentary day to demo your startup for a grand total of $0 (we’ll foot the $1,995 bill). The only requirements to apply to our contest?

  • Your companies must be less than two years old
  • You have raised less than $2 million dollars in funding
  • Last but not least, your app must be powered by the OpenTok API
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iOS Developer Contest – 2012 Winners!

In march we announced our iOS Developer Contest to celebrate our OpenTok iOS SDK.

Today we officially announce our winners! Out of all the super awesome submissions, 3 teams will be receiving an iPad 3. Without further ado, here are the winners:

1) An iPad3 goes to Romotive! Romo is a robot that you attach iphone/ipod into, and you will be able to control it from the browser! You can also broadcast your video onto the iphone and see what Romo sees on your browser. Welcome to the new age of telepresence! These guys are serious, you can order their robots Today. Read their blog!

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