There’ll be food trucks and music and misting fans for tailgating. There’ll be even alcoholic Italian ice and an inflatable obstacle course (hopefully not enjoyed repeatedly in quick succession) and Nerf guns.
If you wander over to 2387 Clements Ferry Road on Saturday, you might think you’ve happened upon a miniature state fair.
But then you’ll see the laptops and the smartphones and realize this isn’t just another Lowcountry barbecue or beer fest.
It’s a Hackathon. SPARC Hackathon 2.0, to be exact.
After hosting a similar event last August, the Daniel Island software company is once again inviting computer programmers from around the Southeast to develop the best mobile applications they can in 12 hours. The event is free for all, and spectators are welcome (and encouraged to register beforehand).
“We just think it’s going to be a blast,” John Smith, SPARC’s chief technology officer and chief evangelist, said last week.
Co-sponsored by the likes of Google and Microsoft, the Hackathon also will feature free food and drink, movies and video games and raffles for gift certificates to local eateries. Twenty-one teams had signed up by Friday morning, and SPARC is expecting as many as 500 people to show up.
“It’s not just for a bunch of nerdy people trying to write code,” Smith said.
But the main event is the coding. The apps will be judged on their innovation, user experience, quality and impact, and among the prizes is a $2,000 check for Best of Show.
Each app will then be published under a free license and will be available in SPARC’s new private app store, Knappsack.
Last year, Team Razzle Dazzle’s “Road Trip Manager” app bested the likes of The Beard Creeps and their “Random Game Generator” app.
In addition to fueling technological productivity and maybe attracting some potential hires to SPARC, Smith hopes the Hackathon serves to unite the Charleston technology community and while showcasing it to the broader world.
“The only way to do that is to raise the tide,” Smith said. “We want to show Charleston as this great hub even beyond Charleston.”
To register to attend and for more information: http://hackathon.sparcedge.com/.
Reach Brendan Kearney at 937-5906 and follow him on Twitter at @kearney_brendan.