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Sequoia::Hackathon 2014 – Analysis

Just came back from Sequoia Hack 2014 at the ITC Gardenia in Bangalore. We were team Slartibartfast (Jainendra Kumar) and I. My original teammate couldn’t come, and Jai decided to join up for a fun 24 hour hackathon(his first). As it is the norm in bangalore, a great crowd of some of the smartest hackers in Bangalore had showed up .  A lot of Sequoia backed indian companies were releasing API’s like JustDial, Freecharge, HealthKart, Practo, Appier etc, But we were focused on working and seeing the OLA cabs API. We were quite excited because we both are excited about the potential Ola cabs has to disrupt the transportation space in India. There were 12 tracks one could be in- i.e Payments, ML, Transport, Open Source, Gaming, Social,Virtual Goods, Search, Analytics, Infra, healthcare and (one more that I cant remember anymore, will update).

Our original idea was to build Poola – Carpooling with Ola. But when the OLA API’s were released, they just weren’t enough to build what we wanted to, and we didn’t want to download and fudge data and show something fake and even though Ola worked really hard on releasing the API’s they couldnt expose more data. We tried to build a pseudo hack till 10PM with dummy data without a lot of API use on Saturday but then realized it would be futile to continue, plus we later discovered a lot of teams were doing Carpooling with Ola . This is when we made the switch from Transportation to Gaming. We ended up building a small game on Android.

The premise for building the game:

  1. Very easy game play but should be difficult to master
  2. Addictive
  3. Can be built in 10 hours and Put onto play store by 10 am
  4. Learn about game building on Android for work purposes, try to use concepts like OPENGL etc., to build it

Presenting Wiley Runner. (Removed for now off the store, will be back after a few image tweaks)

feature

Help Wile E. Coyote – the hero in our game(Yes!) escape a barrage of roadrunners and kill as many as you can with ACME missiles Instructions:

  1.  Move the coyote from left to right to escape roadrunners
  2.  Swipe up to shoot ACME missiles
  3. Try to achieve high scores and compete with your friends .

Next steps for the app will include

  1. Google play integration
  2. Ads
  3. Infinite scroll levels

And Maybe gaze tracking integration (Anand chandrashekaran from MadStreetDen will be thrilled) Lets see if it can become the next flappy bird – everyone I sent the game to are still playing it 😀 All in all a great event.

Met a few investors of Sequoia who I will certainly want to be talking to again 😉

Feedback to the event organizers:

  1. Wifi – Very hit/miss . Maybe try handing out one day dongles to every one next time?
  2. Segregate teams doing 24 hours hacks vs . I know this is difficult but this would be great.
  3. Organized better – we weren’t in any of the track lists, we didn’t receive a google link to register our track and we literally had 1 minute with the judges towards the end because quite literally time was up.

But then its only the second sequoia hack and hope it gets better next year- so all in all good fun! The food and the continuous supply of paper boat/tzinga was brilliant

Congratulations to all the winners and great work!

Follow the #seqhack tag on twitter to find all the winners and winning ideas.

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