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OpenIDEO Hack Day - Prototyping ideas into reality

I'm hugely inspired by hackdays, where developers and designers get together to realise great ideas. Could we run OpenIDEO Hack Days as part of a challenge to refine ideas and test out how they might work in the real world?

Photo of Haiyan Zhang
13 23

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Hack Days are events where designers and developers get together to prototype and realise great ideas. The focus is all about making and this means developing ideas as much as possible through creating the website, the app or going out into the streets and filming the service.

Could the OpenIDEO process use Hack Days as part of the challenge to refine ideas and test them out? The end result might not be a finished product, but might be a working piece of software you could use to test out with users... or a new product in its own right inspired by an original concept from the platform.

What do you think about running Hack Days in the refine phase of a challenge to test out ideas? 

What kind of social impact does this concept achieve?

Many steps closer to realisation. I see lots of past concepts that I would love to find time and create a hacked prototype to rally support around.

What skills are required to take this concept forward?

Organisation and volunteers.

How do you envision this concept being supported financially?

As part of our challenge process or from donations by local businesses: space, pizza, drinks, software, hardware, materials.

Virtual Team:

Christine Hendrickson, Ashley Jablow, Arjan Tupan


Join the conversation:

Photo of David Hood

Haiyan, I love this idea and believe that if we were to take forward only one concept out of the #oi_impact challenge then it should be based on this. Have been part of quite a few of these types of events in the last two years (incl. SI Camp, Global Service Jam and rapid prototyping woskshops) and while the process hasn't been perfected yet, it's certainly on the right path. It's an engaging, fun way for people to collaborate and cocreate for something good. :)

Photo of Haiyan Zhang

Hi David, thanks! Would love to get your insights on these hack/jam day events when we get to planning one. Perhaps it could also be a globally distributed effort if volunteers are willing to run one in say... Australia :)

Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard

I think this would be great... The global service jam is also globally distributed. I think it would be worth making a call to volunteer. looking forward to it!

Photo of DeletedUser


This idea was proposed by Steve Blank in his book "Four Steps to the Epiphany" whose target audience are entrepreneurs, I agree with you. The idea of getting out of the building should also be applied to social ideas

Photo of DeletedUser


Id love to call it a 'Jam' rather than a 'Hack' ... Developers Hack and Designer Jam... It would be our very own baby... You cant call a Designer a Hacker!! Albeit he may be in many ways!!!

Photo of Johan Löfström

Jam Hacks? :D *hehe*

Photo of Meena Kadri

I'm also interested in ways we might share the energy and buzz that is generated from Hack Days with our globally dispersed community. Might there be ways for everyone to feel included in the excitement? Via live-tweeting, webcasts, etc? What else?

Photo of Johan Löfström

good ideas. I know there are tons of small details in those "hack days" that are discarded because of lack of time (and you try to focus on only the idea with the most potential to be completed within the set time frame), many of those unused thoughts deserve to also be documented, and lifted, perhaps in a video-clip made with a very simple "Pecha Kucha"-style-presentation, to raise attention from someone else to try to pursue that to an independent direction.

Photo of Ashley Jablow

Thanks for adding me to your team! Love this idea :)

Photo of Haiyan Zhang


Photo of An Old Friend

Should have coined the phrase before Facebook... I like this idea, and others that focus on transcending the digital space. It would be really cool to organize participants or teams by location...

Photo of James McBennett

Like! Alot of cool videos to get inspired with this one, not sure where the video Arjan posted is, but was 48hrs, no sleep and alot of fun!

Photo of Johan Löfström

I have participated in one of those 48h-races, and I swear it is a blast! I wish there were a lot of events like that all year round, so I could do more.