Over the weekend of 12/13 June 2010 I had the pleasure of attending HackCamp London held at the Google Canteen in the London offices.
Originally I had signed up for Barcamp London 8 which was going to be held over the same weekend however the venue for the Barcamp had pulled out last minute leaving the organising team having to find another venue. After a large amount of Twitter activity and meeting with past venues a venue couldn’t be found in time which would be willing to host the Barcamp. This proved a problem as a lot of people had booked travel and accomodation for the weekend. It was said that if the Barcamp couldn’t go ahead there would be a posibillity of a another event taking place, this is where HackCamp Lodon was born as Google had stepped in last minute offering the canteen in the London offices but only for a small amount of people.
The Saturday started off very early for me as I had to get the 5:45 train out of Durham to arrive on time. Once I arrived at London Kings Cross I met up with Dom, Tim and Carolyn who had travelled from Leeds and we made our way over to the venue.
The event kicked off with speakers from each of the sponsers showcasing their APIs including a presentation from Matt Harris from Twitter who I have to say defended the heckling very well! As this weekend had marked the Queen’s birthday we had a great view of the flyovers including the famous Red Arrows. Hacking started at 1pm, which would continue for another 24 hours to 1pm on Sunday.
My Hack I struggled to come up with a hack before the event, but on the train journey down whilst browsing through photos on Flickr, I came up with an idea. Currently Flickr uses Yahoo Maps to map photos on the world map. I was interested to see where “Explore” photos were on a map (again flickr already does this, however not very well). My hack would include using Google Maps (It would have been wrong not to as the event was held at Google), getting the geotagged “Explore” photos (using YQL) and plotting these on the map, but showing all information for that photo, not just the limited amount which Flickr currently shows. This proved more difficult than first thought. First of all it relies on people actually geotagging the photos which not many Explore photos are, and secondly just for one photo, it is an immense amount of data which is brought back. I spoke to a few people and they thought this would be a good hack,however by the submission time on the sunday, I still didn’t have it finished, but would endevour to complete it in my spare time at home.
2pm on the Sunday marked the submission deadline. Each hacker who had submitted their hack then had to give a 1 minute presentation, no longer. Here is a list of hacks which were submitted:
Browser to Phone – Simon Maddox and Sam Minchin
Like ChromeToPhone, but for iPhone. And any browser.
Gu Recipies – Lisa Van Gelder
Recipes app that takes recipes from the Guardian and the Observer and makes them easily searchable by ingredient. http://gu-recipes.appspot.com
Twitterbox – Foo
A file system built on top of twitter using tweets + annotations to store the data. This implementation comes complete with files, directories and of course a means to synchronise real folders + files against this online store. http://github.com/jhollingworth/twitterfs
Twitter Mood Checker – Carolyn Lyn
Carries out a sentiment analysis on your recent tweets. http://carolynlyn.com/twitter-sentiment
First in Line – Dom Hodgson
An app to stop ticket scalpers… those bastards…
Dragboard – Richard Boulton
Explore articles and news on the web by following a trail of entities extracted. Then put them on a board and drag them around to make it look pretty. http://dragboard.appspot.com/
GiggyFind – Team A
Don’t get lost on the way to see Britney or Metallica
The Queen’s birthday surprise – Tom Scott
Video hack, cheap joke. http://www.tomscott.com/queen
Browse my Tweets – Johan Uhle and Konstantin Kaefer
Allows you to fulltext search your own tweets and filter by content type (e.g. only find tweets that have YouTube videos). http://browsemytweets.com
Over Achievers – Cristiano Betta
Real life achievements, for those of us that want prizes every day. http://overachievers.heroku.com
Tarrif Finder – Glyn
A Firefox plugin that tells you how much some thing will really costs to import. For example before you buy from ebay usa it tells you if you need to pay import tariff and VAT and how much that would be.
Tweeted videos over XMPP – Thesmith
Videos that get tweeted about get resolved in URIplay and stored in appengine (to deal with Twitter down-time) and staggers their output, via XMPP, to who-ever wants them. http://realtime-video.appspot.com/
Worldcup 2010 – Melinda Seckington
A spreadsheet to keep track of her family’s WorldCup 2010 football pool which she can publish on her blog. http://tinyurl.com/38xqbf3
Gigamajig – Team GigJunkie
The Gigamajig is an Android app which looks in your device’s media library, finds the most common artists by count of music files, then searches GigJunkie’s API for upcoming gigs close to your last known location.
iPlayer Twitter Sync – Tom Lea & George Brocklehurst
Watch something on iPlayer and and view your friend’s tweets, but shifted in SPACE AND TIME to align with your iPlayer viewing pleasure. http://iplayer.spacelincoln.com
Pianoe – Seyi Ogunyemi
Collaborative real-time piano playing. http://pianoe.iciclelab.com
HTML5 Audio DSP – Team Badger
iGigs – Nik Fletcher
iGigs finds nearby events from the GigJunkie API. It also analyses your iPhone’s iPod library and finds gigs based on the artists in that.
Tron – Continental Savages
Play an all-HTML5 multiplayer game of tron lightcycles while listening to your mflow stream and seeing which gigs the artist you’re listening to is performing at nearby. You can even buy tickets!
Over engineered LOLCats – Tom Lea
Made Rails stream responses while keeping templates. This is the start of a working BigPipe like thing, but more importantly it allows us to create a near infinite stream of LOLcats by streaming the page as we crawl the site. This is totally pointless!
Copy protected PDF thingy – Matt Copperwaite
Glyn from the ORG wanted an easy way to detect if PDFs from FOI requests were copy protected or not. http://git.localhosy.net/?a=summary&p=interesting-pdf
Chip In – Leo Tong
iPhone web app based on jqTouch that allows users to donate micropayments via PayPal for now and potentially and ideally a quicker method like the new PayPal iPhone libraries, background SMS, in-app purchase or a bespoke payment system like Amazon’s, so that users don’t have to reenter things like credit card details or phone numbers each time.
Steve Smith – Loner
iPhone app for gig junkie api thats actually an html5 web app.
Streaming audio to the iPhone / iPad / iPod – Michael R. Lorek
Delivering an audio stream to the iPhone / iPad / iPod native in HTML5, or alternatively utilizing the Flash player on other devices. http://urmila.me.uk/lectures/html5
Mapnificent: London Weekend Night Buses – Stefan Wehrmeyer
Shows you areas that you can reach with London Night Buses on the weekend from 1am to 5am. http://london.mapnificent.de/
Hack Camp Logo – leipie
D!rTy Qu!c|< hAcK: Lego Logo in the kitchen.
Feedfern – loleg
This is a web site widget (to be published as jQuery plugin) which combines Buzz feeds with news from Bloggers Against Hunger in an innovative visual presentation overlaid with site content. http://feedfern.utou.ch
HackCamp animated logo – N00b
3d logo of hackcamp by making in the Quake 3 engine, using GTK radiant. and then edit it in 2 video programs, virtual dub, and live movie maker.