24 hours of coding, creating an innovative solution, and unlimited food. What more could you want from a hackathon? Trippervilla witnessed the culmination of a 24-hour coding fest from 8-9 August, 2014. Here is a nearly accurate recollection of how it all started and ended.
The pillars of PersonifyD: Ideate, Create and Amaze
12 noon – The teams were formed and as it always happens in the beginning, the energy levels were reaching a sky high. The initial wireframes for the mobile and website applications were made and were given to the designers, who could breathe life into mere squares and rectangles on the paper.
2 PM – The work behind the beautiful interfaces had started its rapid rise. Coders had started their marathon on a blank screen. Lunch could take a back seat as there were variables that were not assigned a proper value. Many features had yet to be added.
4 PM – After discussing the additional features and the estimated time to code them, we got back to writing letters, numbers and special characters that would not have made sense to someone, who had missed Computer Programming 101.
The first demo translated the primary ideas into a presentable format
6 PM – The first demo session provided the much needed break. The designs were still in their crude form and there was more coding to be done, which meant a few more smoke breaks would follow. The picture of the final product was becoming clearer as time passed and fresh changes were far better than the initial thoughts.
8 PM – We dispersed for dinner, with the thought of eating less and the available food helped. The dinner table talk had nothing to do with the usual office gossip. It was about what the next six hours would contain apart from the multiple caffeine getaways to keep us awake.
The much needed dinner break!
10 PM – The first caffeine break had done no good. The speed of coding had reduced diminutively, but the passion for building something innovative and effective was still driving us. A visit from the members of the L-team helped encourage us move past the post dinner lethargy.
12 midnight – Time for debugging. We were checking whether or not the code was functioning as it was supposed to. Like all great things have some obstacles, some features were not functioning as they were programmed or not programmed to do.
Just as sleep was about to take over, a visit from the L-Team members inspired us
2 AM – Keeping our eyes open had been added to the list of to-do things. The changes after debugging had begun; code was being fixed with a cup of black coffee in one hand. After 14 hours of no sleep and more than 10 cans of Red Bull, the search for the wings that were promised in the advert had begun. The coders and designers were working in tandem to create the first version of their application incorporating the changes after the first debugging session.
4 AM – The second round of debugging had begun, and there were a few changes that still had to be coded. We had moved past the normal sleeping time and now there was very less or no trace of sleep. We were aware of the last minute changes that would creep in, so the major part of the coding had to be done before that phase had to begin.
6 AM – After 18 hours of coding, we had the feeling that 24 hours would not be enough to finish it. After multiple coding and debugging sessions, we were nearing the final product, which could turn out to be MMT’s next big thing or that is what every team was thinking.
It was really hard for a few of us! Sometimes sleep got the better of us
8 AM – Breakfast time! Another break that was taken reluctantly because functioning on Red Bulls and coffee is not advisable by any sane medical practitioner. The conversations had become silent and now it was about a working product which had the potential to become big. Show time was nearing.
10 AM – We were two hours away from submission. Final changes were being made to the applications and the scenes in the UX bay portrayed a post-apocalyptic phase. All that remained was code. It was a race against time to build a working solution that could bring the next big change or at least give a glimpse of it.
12 noon – Submission Time! Every team put in their working applications forth and readied themselves for the big demo. 24 hours had passed, but the real test was still left. The pizzas had arrived and the idea of lunch had never sounded better.
With 19 innovative entries, choosing a winner was a tough task
After 19 demos and a few power naps amidst the demos, the hackathon had come to a productive end. If you are wondering about the winners, here they are:
Winners – Vibhor, Sumit Gupta
Runners Up – Prabhat, Sanchit Bansal, Vineeta Sangwan
The winners are all smiles after receiving their gifts
Nothing says ‘Well Done’ like an Apple product