Politics and Elections Blog
Trends, tools and news from the Google Politics & Elections team
Guest Post: Groups Solve Problems During Hack-a-Thon Weekend in London
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Dominic Campbell, Founder of FutureGov
[From time to time we invite guests to blog about initiatives of interest, and are very pleased to haveDominic Campbell, founder of FutureGov join us here. – Ed.]
Note: This is an edited version of a post that first appeared on
On Friday and Saturday 17-18 June, a diverse bunch of energetic people came together in London for
(the first of its kind).
Some of those present - the student developers, Google developers and social innovators - were regular attendees at hack weekends, but it was those who had never even heard of a hack weekend - the members of the
website - that turned Interactivism into a hack weekend to remember.
Kicking things off,
) outlined the challenge that lay ahead of the teams, working together and using their creative, design and coding skills to turn their ideas into working prototypes by the end of the two days.
Before the hacking commences, two inspirational speakers to stepped up to the mic.
shared his experience of all things accessible through his current job as Senior Lecturer in Product Design and Engineering at Middlesex University and previous job as Accessibility Engineer at Ford. In short, listen to what people need and do that. Simple right?
Then came the star of the show, Peter Oakley, otherwise known by his renowned YouTube name: "
". Peter spoke about his inspiration for joining YouTube, his love of all things web related, encouraged others to just give it a go as "you can't break it" and then demoed his YouTube skills.
And then it was time to get down to business. The people behind the ideas pitched to the room to get people motivated and moving into teams to start to get those ideas developed. Most of the teams gelled really quickly and stereotypes were quickly dispelled. Gransnet members later commented how impressed they were that the student developers really took time to listen to their ideas and everyone remarked on what good fun and great value the Gransnetters were.
Despite some healthy competitiveness, designers, developers and Gransnet members were bartered between teams, helping with sought after skills like logo design, understanding a complicated piece of coding or posing for a photograph or two to jazz up their final presentations.
So those final projects presented to the judging panel:
a location based site with user generated content about local volunteering opportunities and ideas for projects
Go for Local:
a portal for people to locate the services that are around them, including the user reviews of the services, such as a pharmacy (a combination of
Older People's Local Portal
an easy to use and fun genealogy game (a bit like Foursquare Family History)
using the web to show patients if their hospital appointment is going to be delayed because of an overrunning clinic
an easy to use remote control made from a computer tablet that can be personalised with photographs and sounds
a simplified web browser that removes all the clutter and makes internet browsing clear and straightforward for the inexperienced user
helping people in care homes connect and add value to the outside world by recording memories specific to local places that can be accessed by people visiting those locations
an app for sharing likes and dislikes related to accessibility through photographs and individual profiles, for example a photograph of something that impedes good accessibility (a combination of
On the Go
Milly and Jake
an interactive story that can be read by grandparents and grandchildren regardless of their location, for example by using Skype.
Face to Face:
simplified video calling, using a telephone number as identification instead of a username (a combination of
Face to Face
Stupidly Easy Video Chat for Elders
I Was Here:
A way of collecting and sharing memories about times, places and historical events (this team was formed from
Retrospective Life Streaming for Elders
After tough deliberation, the expert panel of judges awarded
as the Interactivism - Accessibility Hack Weekend winners. The students from this team received a sought after
Google Interactivism Award
. Our Gransnetters were also invited to form their own judging panel and voted for
as their favourite idea.
All the photographs from the weekend are available on the
Interactivism Flickr group
And special thank you goes to Gransnet members and everyone who came along and worked so hard - we hope you all enjoyed it as much as we did.
No comments :
Post a Comment
4 Screens to Victory
Google India. Know your candidates
Hangouts On Air
How do I vote?
State of the Union
Voter Information Tool
YouTube for Government
Calling All Google Politics Trendspotters!
Spot a political, issue or campaign search trend on the web that we should feature?
Submit Your Trends Here
Official Google Blog
Public Policy Blog
Lat Long Blog
Ads Developer Blog
Android Developers Blog