International Open Data Hackathon on December 3, 2011

It’s time to think different about hacking.

Building upon the success of an international civic hackathons around the world in 2010, there will be Random Hacks of Kindness and International Open Data Day hackathons on six different continents on December 3rd, 2011. If you’re interested in volunteering for a different kind of public service, check out the wiki to see if there’s an event near you.

The International Open Data Hackathon in DC will be held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. The organizers encourage attendees to “bring ideas, your laptop, and help create solutions to make data more open and make better use of open data.” The list of attendees is already filling up with interesting people, including members of Washington’s open government and technology communities. The DC open data hackathon is hosted by Wikimedia DC and sponsored by civic startup PopVox.

D.C. and Moscow to host bilateral open government codeathon

In less than two weeks, there will be an unprecedented bilateral codeathon between the United States and Russia held in both Washington, D.C. and Moscow, Russia.

The event will last between September 24 at 9AM until September 25 at 5:00 PM and will be held at American University in D.C. and in the offices of Yandex in Moscow.

More details coming soon.

For now, check out Code4Country.org and submit your ideas for civic applications that can help make Russian civil society stronger, solve problems for citizens and enable more government transparency,

New York City looks to an open government hackathon to redesign NYC.gov

This week, Luke Fretwell suggested that “instead of building apps, civic hackathons should focus on redesigning websites, then turning them over to gov.” Today in New York City, the first day of the Revinvent NYC.gov hackathon started work on just that. (NYC had been working on this open government event long before Fretwell’s suggestion, but the confluence is worth noting.)

Tomorrow, the world will see what prototypes the Big Apple’s civic developers have co-created today, armed with NYC government demographic information and NYC.gov Web analytics.

They’re using a combination of digital and analog tools, including blackboards, projection screens, laptops and Post-Its. You can track the progress of the hackathon over at the NYC Digital Tumblr.

The formula here seems to be: Reserve space, provide coffee, bagels, electricity and Internet access and use the power of modern social networking, publishing tools and the New York City Mayor’s to convene the community.

If New Yorkers end up with a rethought, redesigned and relaunched NYC.gov, maybe other cities will try out that formula themselves.

For more on New York’s effort to become the nation’s premier digital city, learn more about how the Big Apple is thinking about architecting a city as a platform and citizensourcing smaller government.

[Photo credit: Colin Raney]