Hack Day Awards – part 2

The Results of the OTA12 Hack Day

[hr]Audience Favourite

Sam Machin - photo credit Martin Cunningham

The winner of the Audience Favourite Award was Sam Machin for NS Tweet:

This is the twitter client MacGyver would use if he were stuck in a Hliton Hotel room with their expensive paid WiFi, or if he found himself in a repressive state that had blocked twitter access eg Iran, Syria, etc. 

I’ve written a server that allows you to send tweets hidden inside DNS traffic, most networks allow DNS to pass freely and due to the nature of the system it relays the request through various servers until it gets to the destination, now you can tweet with nothing more than an nslookup command.

I haven’t yet got receiving of messages working but that’s on the plan using TXT records so right now its sending only, also this is more of an API/Platform as I don’t have any pretty clients, but hey if you’re stuck in the desert with nothing more than half a hair pin, a rugby ball and a pay-walled wifi connection you can now tweet!”

Sam won a LEGO Mindstorm Kit, donated by LEGO.

[hr]Best in Show

Terence Eden - photo credit Martin Cunningham

The winner of the Best in Show Award was Terence Eden for Bletchley Sonata:

“Music of the spheres – a melodious journey through the environment. A piece of music so sumblime it defies all explanation!”

For samples of the music, listen to Jamillah Knowles’ interview with Terence Eden on the BBC Radio 5 Outriders programme (the last interview on the clip). Terence won a Raspberry Pi donated by Vodafone Group R&D.

[hr] The Bletchley Park Challenge

Bletchley Park award - photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

Team TACS ( Thomas Hopper) won  the Bletchley Park Challenge for his entry The Bletchley SMS Encryptor:

An Android App to allow the little ones to send encrypted text messages to each other and intercept them for code breaking. Two simple cyphers to use and try to break. Themed for Bletchley Park in striking orange.”

Thomas won a First Day Cover from the Bletchley Park Post Office, signed by Jean Valentine (one of the original Bletchley Park Wren’s) – donated by the Bletchley Park Trust.

[hr] The Secure Communications Challenge

HMGCC award - photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

Team DoTank (Phil Willoughby) won the Secure Communications Challenge for his entry Snique:

“I wanted to do something relevant to the location; so I have chosen to attempt to thwart part of signals intelligence, namely traffic analysis. As it’s often said: any idiot can invent a secure communications system that they cannot themselves break, so I look forward to one-day being told the flaw in this scheme.”

Phil has posted more information about Snique on his blog, including how it works, and has made the client demo available on Github. Phil won an engraved Motorola Xoom 2, donated by HMGCC.

[hr]The Facebook Open Graph Challenge

Facebook Award - photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

The winners of the Facebook Open Graph Challenge were Ali Bros & Dylan Jones for their entry Dude, Where’s My Car?:

“We’re making a web enabled car tracking unit. Using GPS and OBDII interfaces location and engine data are collected and sent to a web server over a 3G link using ARM’s mbed and the Vodafone 3G dongle. Facebook’s open graph is used to share the road trips and tag pictures or friends in each trip. we’re also hoping to use RFID for authentication and a color LCD to deliver a nice user interface to the user. Facebook enabled Android and iOS apps are also developed to provide access to the information on the go.”

Dylan has posted the App here. Ali and Dylan each won a Samsung Galaxy S2 , donated by Facebook

[hr]Honourary Facebook Prize

Kieran Gutteridge and Chris Ross each won a Samsung Galaxy S2 , donated by Facebook, for their “repair” work on the Facebook iOS SDK.  Check out their work on GitHub. (You may also want to check out Chris Banes‘ fixes to the Facebook Android SDK on GitHub)

[hr]The Vodafone Embedded Hardware Hack Challenge

Vodafone award - photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

The winners of  the Vodafone Embedded Hardware Hack Challenge were Ali Bros & Dylan Jones for their entry Dude, Where’s My Car?: “We’re making a web enabled car tracking unit. Using GPS and OBDII interfaces location and engine data are collected and sent to a web server over a 3G link using ARM’s mbed and the Vodafone 3G dongle. Facebook’s open graph is used to share the road trips and tag pictures or friends in each trip. we’re also hoping to use RFID for authentication and a color LCD to deliver a nice user interface to the user. Facebook enabled Android and iOS apps are also developed to provide access to the information on the go.” Dylan has posted the App here. Ali and Dylan each won an HTC 1 X phone, a k3770 modem, a SIM payt 20 credit, and an mbed, donated by Vodafone.

 

[hr]Dan’s Challenge

Ricardo and Elena receiving the prize from Dan & Lasse of LEGO - Photo credit Martin Cunningham

The winner of Dan’s Challenge was Team ET Bot (Blanca Tortajada, Elena Perez, and Ricardo Varela) for their entry ET Bot:

“We are on to take Dan’s challenge and build something that is a mashup of Social, Space open data and Lego Mindstorms! wohoo!”

Follow the ET Bot on Twitter. The team won a LEGO Mindstorm Kits, donated by LEGO.

Hack Day Awards – part 1

Best Science Hack

Paul Tanner with Jatrobot – photo credit Luis Abreu

The winner of the Best Science Hack award was Team Hyperiron (Hercules Fisherman, Paul Tanner, Sarah Mount & Nikita Korotaev) for their entry Jatrobot:

“In view of impending shortage of food, to build sustainability, we would like to deploy as many sensors as possible to get realtime feedback of plantation and the land they grown on.

We employ various mobile or stationary sensors to collect realtime data to a central server together with historical data that is collected along with other third-party data, such as weather forecasts, to determine or recommend suitable nutritional need at required resolution on the ground.The alerts can be sent via choice of methods SMS, email, twitter or Voxeo.

In time we would have historical analysis of the data where we could compare with other data collected and suggest best course of action, we would also take into account the weather forecasts for instance to plan watering level needed or nutritional values as we are sampling the time and location of the sensor reading this allows us to target more granular level possible. “

Hercules has posted more about Jatrobot on his blog, as has Paul on his blog, and their slides are on Slideshare.
The team won  LEGO Mindstorm Kits, donated by LEGO, and a Nokia Lumia 800, donated by Nokia.

Best User Experience

William & William – photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

The Best User Experience award went to Team Glitch (William Morland ) for his entry Pepin:

“There are glitches in the matrix all around us but so far there is no fun instinctive way to share them. If you see a funked up ATM then of course you want to tell your friends (and possibly the bank) but that isn’t a natural thing for a normal user and it certainly isn’t fun.”

William won a Blackberry PlayBook, donated by Blackberry.

 


Best use of Open APIs / Open Data

The Best use of Open APIs / Open Data award went to Team Glitch (William Morland ) for his entry Pepin:

“There are glitches in the matrix all around us but so far there is no fun instinctive way to share them. If you see a funked up ATM then of course you want to tell your friends (and possibly the bank) but that isn’t a natural thing for a normal user and it certainly isn’t fun.”

William won a Samsung Galaxy SII, donated by Samsung.


Best Android Entry

There were three winners for the Best Android Entry:

Tom Hume – photo credit Martin Cunningham

Tom Hume for It’s Good to Talk:

Phone calls are more than the sum of their parts: the act of making a call is a demonstration that you’re thinking of someone. Inspired by the Bob Hoskins-voiced BT adverts of the 1980s, this Android app does one very simple thing: whenever you phone one of your Facebook friends, it silently posts posts that fact onto Facebook. It’s either a public declaration of care that goes beyond just clicking “like”, or one step further towards a world without privacy, depending on how you feel about this sort of thing…”

Terence Eden for Bletchley Sonata:

“Music of the spheres – a melodious journey through the environment. A piece of music so sumblime it defies all explanation!”

For samples of the music, listen to Jamillah Knowles’ interview with Terence Eden on the BBC Radio 5 Outriders programme (the last interview on the clip). Team Intohand (Matt Rollings, Tom Durrant, Elliot Long and Kieran Gutteridge) for Live Quiz:

“The idea involves a general quiz game with a twist – it’s not just played in parallel with each person on a phone, but they are playing together, getting each question simultaneously, plus information about how the other players are doing on the same quiz. Entry into the quiz is as simple as scanning a QR code. It is a cross-platform app, running on iPhone, Android Mobile and Android tablet.”

Terence, Tom & Thibaut – photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

Each individual won:

 


 Best iOS Entry

The Best iOS Award went to Team SDK Dub Remix (Kieran Gutteridge and Chris Ross) for their entry Stop Blocking the Beats:

“Our survey says there is grave situation in the Facebook iOS SDK.  We hunted the native OTA Facebook engineers and once caught, we explained our thoughts in a highly pleasant and structured fashion. Voices were only raised in excitement and jubilation.  The result of the conversation with our now great mates, was a hearty challenge to look into solving some of our grievances. So we did.

Our course of attack was to boldly go, where no developer has gone before, and rewrite the Facebook client SDK for iOS. We have a readme at https://github.com/hiddenmemory/facebook-ios-sdk/blob/master/README.md which details the technical changes we have made. We did see Alice, she sends her regards.”

Kieran and Chris won the O’Reilly books: Programming iOS 5Building iPhone Apps with HTML, CSS and JavaScript , and Learning iOS Programming, donated by O’Reilly Media.

 


 Best Windows Phone Entry

Team Wendy – photo credit Martin Cunningham

The Best Windows Phone Award went to Team Wendy (Matt O’Keefe, Dexter Dillinger, Laura Sanders, Trent Walton, Claire Scantlebury, and Matt Hunt) for their entry How Many Beers:

“Track what your friends are drinking including measurements and the chosen consuming technique.”

Each team member received a Lumia 800 , donated by Nokia. The winning team also received the books Microsoft Windows Phone 7 Developer GuideProgramming Windows Phone 7 – Silverlight Edition, and Programming Windows Phone 7 – XNA Framework Edition,  Building the Real Time User ExperienceTapworthy, and Gamification by Design, donated by O’Reilly Media.

 


Best Game Entry

Dom & Heather – photo credit Martin Cunningham

The winner of the Best Game Award was Team Recently Engaged (Dom Hodgson and Heather Burke) for I Hope This Works:

“Conferences, Hack Days, Barcamps and other events where you need to get a bunch of people into a room and tell them to sit quietly whilst someone finds an mac connector for the right model.. no not that mac.. the latest mac.. anyway where was I?

Yes, We’ve built a hack to entertain and provide some must needed distraction for the audience throughout the day. If it actually works…”

Dom and Heather each won a Corona Pro subscription  (a value of $349 per year), donated by Ansca Mobile.

Best Use of Other Features: Bluetooth, NFC, RFID and of course Messaging

The winner of the Best Use of Other Features Awards was  Team Hyperiron (Hercules FishermanPaul TannerSarah Mount & Nikita Korotaev) for their entry Jatrobot (See the Best Science Hack award above for more details.)
Hercules has posted more about Jatrobot on his blog, as has Paul on his blog, and their slides are on Slideshare.
The team won a “Goodie Bag of Geekery”, which included a Crumpler bag, a mifi, a fitbit, solar charger & other small electronic gadgets like headphones, & healthy edibles – all donated by Blue Via.

Best Hardware Hack

Emily – photo credit Steve Karmeinsky

The winners of the Best Hardware Hack award were Team Umbicord (Sandor Toth) for his entry Umbicord:

“This project is a multiple development. Once you install the app on your Andorid phone, you are able to read QR codes. If you read the QR code, activity is generated on your Facebook timeline, and at the same time the server stores your QR code. An embedded controller polls the server via Vodafone 3G and makes your decision live (eg. switch on something).Where can it be successful? On events if you have a tilt with 3 different QR codes, symbolise 3 different activity or product. The visitor scans the QR code, creates social activity for the event and at your stand as well.
and Team Robohack (Emily & George Tilley) for their entry Fred:
“a 12 year old girl showed off her hack that used the light from an iphone to set off a robot to throw items (which amusingly flew into the audience and hit a few prime coders)” – Jamillah Knowles, The Next Web.
Each team member won a LEGO Mindstorm Kit, donated by LEGO, and share the O’Reilly books  Arduino CookbookMaking Things See, Make a Mind-Controlled Arduino RobotEnvironmental Monitoring with Arduino, and Getting Started with .NET Gadgeteer, donated by O’Reilly Media.

 


Best Mobile Web / HTML5 Entry

The winner of the Best Mobile Web Award was Threedom (Matt Oakes, Rob Douglas & Luis Abreu) for their entry Boot to Threedom:

“Making a simple 3-button interface for B2G”

Read more about the Threedom interface on which this hack was based on the Ribot blog.

 The Team won the O’Reilly books jQuery Mobile,  Mobile Design Pattern Gallery,  Designing Mobile InterfacesHTML5: Up and RunningHTML5 Cookbook, and HTML5 and CSS3, donated by O’Reilly Media.

Best Tablet Entry

The winner of the Best Tablet Award was Team QRtists (Tristan Roddis and Nigel Crawley) for their entry QR Codebreakers:

“Multiplayer game where players scan QR codes to reveal a scrambled word. They must then switch to ‘decypt’ mode and re-scan in the correct order to solve the anagram.”

Tristan and Nigle won the O’Reilly books iPad: The Missing ManualMotorola Xoom: The Missing Manual, and iPad programming , donated by O’Reilly Media.

Opening Keynote: Ariel Waldman on Hacking Space Exploration

We are very excited to announce that Ariel Waldman of Spacehack.org  will be delivering the opening Keynote for OTA12.

Ariel is the Founder of Spacehack.org, a directory of ways to participate in space exploration, and the creator of Science Hack Day  SF, an event that brings together scientists, technologists, designers and people with good ideas to see what they can create in one weekend. She is also the coordinator for Science Hack Days around the world, an interaction designer, and a research affiliate with Institute For The Future.

Additionally, she sits on the advisory board for the SETI Institute‘s science radio show Big Picture Science, is a contributor to the book State of the eUnion: Government 2.0 and Onwards, and is the founder of CupcakeCamp. In 2008, she was named one of the top 50 most influential individuals in Silicon Valley. Previously, she was a CoLab Program Coordinator at NASA, a Digital Anthropologist at VML (a WPP agency), and a sci-fi movie gadget columnist for Engadget.

Keynote: Hacking Science & Space Exploration

From hearing particle collisions to discovering distant galaxies: how people are creating unexpected interfaces for open source space exploration and science.

Science should be disruptively accessible – empowering people from a variety of different backgrounds to explore, participate in, and build new ways of interacting with and contributing to science. There has been a considerable movement in the last several years to make science more open between scientific disciplines and to the perceived “public”. But simply making science open – by placing datasets, research, and materials online and using open source licensing – is only half the battle. Open is not the same as accessible. Often the materials are very cryptic or are buried deep within a government website where they’re not easy to find. It’s not until someone builds an interface to these open datasets that they truly become accessible and allow for hundreds of thousands of people to actively contribute to scientific discovery.

Mobile Developer’s Guide To The Galaxy: An unplanned success story

– Guest Post by Marco Tabor of Enough Software @enoughmarco

Enough Software will be giving away 400 hard copies of the Developer’s Guide to the Galaxy at OTA12 – we’ll announce the details of how you can pick your copy up at the event.

What a great plan: Publishing a non-commercial and free handbook about mobile technologies, invite the whole community to contribute and put out updates whenever the ecosystem’s changes make it necessary. By doing so, you will always have a nice (and useful!) give-away when your company exhibits at events, you gain visibility as multi-platform experts and you keep on expanding your network. Once you have some attention, it will be easy to find companies who are willing to sponsor the printing – even though they do not control what is written about their products: The big players know pretty well that they have to please developers and provide them with useful tools and information if they want them to develop for their platform, use their tools and/or distribution channels. A great plan indeed. But we never had that plan.

When we started putting out the first edition of our “Developer’s Guide To The Galaxy” at Mobile World Congress 2009, we simply did it because we realized that a lot of people were loosing the big picture in the fragmented and ever-changing mobile world. Back then it was a tiny brochure with 40 pages and I think the longest chapter spoke about J2ME. There never was a commercial idea or business plan behind this. It turned out that the demand was bigger than expected: We quickly ran out of copies, a lot of experts came up to us and offered their support as writers and a company offered some money to cover the printing costs of a re-print. So the second edition came out just some weeks later. It already had 60 pages.

Then Android gained traction and of course we needed to include that in the book, so we extended the content again and printed a third edition. And so it continued.

At this year’s Mobile World Congress we published the 10th edition. It has over 200 pages, 20 authors are involved and almost all the 5000 copies we printed are distributed already (of course we will hold back some boxes for OTA 2012!). Nokia, BlueVia, Immersion and Deutsche Telekom financed the printing this time. Our friends from WIP even published a companion guide which concentrates on app marketing.

It turned out once again that you do not need a detailed plan and stick to it, especially when things are changing as quickly as they do in our business. Just start something if you think it makes sense. If you keep following a good idea, you have a good chance that it will develop its own dynamics.

Download a digital copy:
Mobile Developer’s Guide To The Galaxy No. 10
Mobile Developer’s Guide To The Parallel Universe of App Marketing