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My Thoughts on APIs

Posted by JeremyGThomas Nov 5, 2010

I just dug up this interview I did last year with Mashery about the API.  I love the hip music in the background:

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We're conducting an internal hackathon at the end of the year.  The aim is to give developers a chance to show off their programming skills and turn an idea into something concrete and demoable.  Companies are increasingly adopting hackathons to change company culture and fuel innovation, and I think this would be a welcome and refreshing way to end the year.  My feeling is we will be delighted by what our developers will come up with.


I was inspired by what other companies are doing:



Here are the rules:


  1. The Hackathon starts at 12am PST on Thursday, 16 December.
  2. The Hackathon is also open to M+M China developers, who will hack on their 16th and 17th of December.
  3. "Pre-hacking"  is not allowed.  All code must be written during the Hackathon with one  exception -- open source and active network code libraries not  explicitly developed for the Hackathon may be used in prototypes.
  4. Hackers  may form into teams of no more than 2.  This allows for designers to  pair up with developers or for developers who may not have an idea to  nonetheless participate. 
  5. The Hackathon ends at 10am PST on Friday, 17 December.
  6. Demos begin at 10:15am PST on Friday, 17 December.
  7. Each team is given 3 minutes to demo their application to a panel of judges.
  8. China-based hackers must submit a screencast of their demo to me by 10:15am on Friday, 17 December Beijing time (GMT + 8).  We will then  play the screencasts in front of the judges during the demo session in  San Diego (10:15am GMT - 8).
  9. Judges will use a point scoring system to determine the winner.  The criteria are:
    1. Originality
    2. Potential Business Impact
    3. Execution
    4. Demo Quality
  10. The winning team will win a free trip to the Web 2.0 Expo (March 28 - 31 2011) in San Francisco with all expenses paid.  If the  winning team is China-based, Jean Su will be providing International  tickets and visas.


Food and drink will be provided in the San Diego office during the Hackathon.

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