When you’re starting a 6.5h long road trip with 6 people hunkered in a van at 9:00 AM, you’ve gotta be prepared.
Step 1: Acquire Breakfast
Any seasoned road tripper knows that people aren’t going to have time to eat if you force them to wake up in the wee hours of the morning. But worry not, dear Canadians! Tim Hortons is there for you. An equal assortment of bacon and sausage Timatin (that’s McMuffin for those ignorant of the Timmie ways) and lots of coffee starts the journey off nice and smoooothe.
Step 2: Entertainment
You can only spend so long coding in-transit before boredom inevitably sets in. What to do, trapped in a vehicle with no hope of escape for the foreseeable future?
Well, explode kittens, of course.
But not actually.
Behold the wondrous, addicting awesome card game, Exploding Kittens. Nothing quite passes the time like some fierce competition.
Step 3: Lunch Break
Ahhhh that moment when you find a familiar restaurant on the map. You’ve been there before, you can trust the food! What’s this I see? Mikes, you say? Good! Let’s stop for lunch.
Oh well, food is food.... Except when the intern serves it to you.
The Sponsor Table
When you are giving out robots from the future as an API prize, it’s amazingly effective to run one of them in front of your booth to gather attention from curious hackers. It’s a good thing that Stasi couldn’t help himself and ordered an extra for his own pleasure.
Robots, Sugar and Stickers
The best way to get people to talk to you is to give them free stuff. That's why we made a trip to the local bulk barn and got a whole bunch of colourful tasty treats!
Our rainbow of goodies attracted lots of attention. The lego block candy was particularly popular. You could even build with it!
After a day full of driving and a night full of talking, pitching, joking and laughing, exhaustion is bound to set in.
But this is a Hackathon! Hackers don’t sleep, so why should sponsors?!
But in all seriousness, sleep is super important. Taking shifts (even as short as 4 hours!) is a must if you’re going to last through the night and the next day.
All throughout Friday night and Saturday during the day, the hackers were strewn throughout the school hacking their way to glory.
Although you’d think the majority of hackers don’t want to be bothered by sponsors while they’re working, you’ll quickly discover that they’re more than happy to take some time to explain what they’re working on and ask for a little help! Who knows, maybe they have a use case for your product that they weren’t able to think of?
Congratulations to Glass Half Full on winning our API prize! They made an awesome app using our beta public APIs and won themselves some robot friends.
Check it out :)
After a weekend of very little sleep and lots of talking and just having an all around blast, it’s time to go home. We learned a lot at Hack the North this year and you can bet we’ll bring a lot of those learnings back with us next year!