June 14, 2016
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16 developers and designers showed off their projects and many more participated at this weekend's API Hack Day PDX. The overall winner was an app that helps friends communicate about a planned event using an email and SMS hybrid. Others took on Portland government data and worked with multiple APIs to get details around a specific location. We list many of them in our Hackday Gallery.
This weekend I attended my first ever hacking event: Music Hackday Boston 2011. It was an incredibly exciting, intense experience with plenty of creative inspirational energy. We had ambitious goals which were largely attained, but when it came to the demo, we failed hard. At least, it felt like we did. As I reflected on the demo while we drove home in the black winter night, Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” came to mind. This is the story my personal ring of fire at Music Hackday and how I fell into it.
On a cool morning a group of hackers slowly filter into a downtown Philadelphia storefront. The whiteboard wall quickly fills up, as a few work on finding an accurate way to track the progress of a single chosen bus line. With phone in hand, others build systems providing schedules and stops via SMS and voice. A few keystrokes and another starts tracking the positions of trains, while across the the room, transportation information flickers across a screen, controlled simply by a pair of hands moving through the air.