Scott attends National Day of Civic Hacking in Burlington

Whenever there's an opportunity to hack things together, you'll find a Bluehouse Group employee. And that was no exception at the civic hacking event, held in Burlington on June 1st and 2nd. Our newest programmer, Scott MacEwan, attended the event. I sat down with him recently to find out more.

What was your team up to at the Civic Hacking Event?

My team decided to code a mobile app for Green Up VT, a non-profit that hosts Green Up Day, a day where volunteers from Vermont go out and clean up trash all over our state. We noticed that many areas were being passed over twice or even three times because teams did not know that the sections had already been cleaned. We wanted to create a tracker that would show teams which areas had already been passed over. Using a smart phone's GPS we could follow all the teams and see how long a team was spending in a section. Using the data from all the teams we would generate a heat map to display on the phones being used by the teams so that they could see in real time what sections are being cleaned. As added features, teams could flag spots for help and drop zones could be added to the map so trash drop off could be more coordinated. 

What's the most amazing part of being involved in a Hackathon?

My favorite part is being able to see how much work we were able to do in the allotted time. We started with zero code and were able to make huge strides towards a working app. With a little work on our own time we should have the app up and running with out too much effort. Its also a great chance for me to work with a bunch of my friends from school that have found jobs at various companies in the area. Everyone is learning awesome new technologies at our respective jobs and its fun to show them off to each other. 

How do events like this encourage the programming scene in Burlington?

Events like this help to create a strong community amongst the developers here. Its great to be able to talk to people about the technologies that interest you and to be able to learn from more experienced developers by working with them. It facilitates the making of new connections and helps the newer developers in the area (like myself) meet the people that  make Burlington such a wonderful place to code.

Bluehouse Group is thrilled to be a part of the Vermont hacking community and hope to participate in more hackathons this year. Scott, and the rest of the team included.