Hack Jersey

Coders and journalists, together

We're gearing up for our second hackathon!


Posted on 28 Mar 2015 | 0 comments


  1. Tell Important Stories/Build Important Tools Combine technology, journalism, and open data to create an original project over a weekend. Team up with coders and journalists to create an original app, data visualization, or new media to benefit the public.
  2. Open+New Content Only. Your project can use any public-domain or open-access content. HackJersey will provide links to structured data and other assets, but you are not limited to the data sets we’ve provided. All production code, works of authorship, processed data, and other assets that are not publicly available must be implemented by the team during Hack Jersey – no head starts!
  3. Open-Source Required. Teams must select an Open Source Initiative-approved or Creative Commons license for their project. Projects will be forked to the Hack Jersey GitHub account, and we will use screenshots, etc. It’s up to the team to decide who controls the license.
  4. Build it Right. Your project must stand alone after submission – code must function and media must be presentable. Your project must incorporate or interact with at least one source of open data. We recommend that projects be web sites, mobile apps, data visualizations, or data-assisted journalism. You can make a game that fits the spirit of the competition. Programming is totally optional, and you may use any tools.
  5. Teams. We are putting teams together ahead of time based on your answers to the Google form we asked everyone to fill out. Each team will have a variety of coders, students and at least one journalist. The first hour of so together, you and your teammates should try to find a project that interests all of you, and begin to iterate that project.
  6. Changing Teams. If you find your team or its project incompatible, you are free to scout for other teams before 3:30 p.m. on the first day of the hackathon. However, because teams are built with certain skill sets in mind, and yours may be indispensable, you must ask your team to release you. There is no team changing after 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
  7. Stop hacking by 1:45 p.m. Sunday. Submit Your Project by 2 p.m. Working web apps must be available via a publicly-accessible URL by noon on Sunday for judging. All source code and required assets must be committed to a jury of New Jersey tech and media veterans who will judge each presentation and project. They’re looking for teams that build a compelling project by integrating technology, journalism, and — if applicable — open data. You’ll go far if your project is well-designed, compelling, well-presented, and relevant to the news theme. We’ll give warnings before hacking closes, and expect projects to be submitted by the announced time. EXACT FILING DETAILS WILL BE POSTED ON HACKJERSEY.COM.
  8. Presentations. Presentations will be five minutes and will all be done on a single presentation laptop. Your project must be accessible through a web browser, which you’ll access from Github or Hackpad on our presentation computer. Feel free to use slides and other graphics to make your idea zing. Be prepared for a two-minute Q&A from the judges.
  9. Be nice. Leave the space neat. This should go without saying, but we expect participants to treat each other, the staff and the hacking facilities provided by Montclair State University with consideration.


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