HackTM is the biggest (and baddest) hackathon in South-East Europe. Participants can expect 48h of intense hacking, cool activities, great networking and plenty of learning opportunities.
Who can attend?

Tech people, designers and non-programmers of all ages* are all welcome to HackTM. Whether you’re a developer, a designer, a geek, a tech-savvy individual or simply have the talent and creativity to make it through 48h of continuous hacking, you should give HackTM a try. Bring your passion for IT and hack away, your way.

*If you are under 18 yo, your parents will have to fill out a form of approval. Please download the form, have your parents sign it and make sure you bring it with you on registration day! Otherwise you won’t be able to join the hacking fun.

What can I expect to find at HackTM?

In terms of attendees and staff, expect a lot of excited people passionate about IT, industry experts, mentors to guide you if you get stuck, judges to… uhm, judge your project ofc and a jolly-bunch of volunteers who are ready to help you with whatever. 

In terms of amenities, there will be several food trucks, drink stands (juices, smoothies, coffee, water, tea), merchandise & swag corners, fun activities provided by our sponsors and a sleeping area with sleeping bags where you can take a power nap (or, you know, snore the night or day away to recharge). 

From 2020, HackTM will also host the final of HackTM_CTF, a Capture the Flag competition in which 10 teams of hackers from all over the world compete against the clock to finish a set of tech challenges.

What should I bring?

To have a great time: We try to provide a wide array of food options and beverages on location, available for free or in exchange COCOs. However, if you know hacking makes you crave specific treats, feel free to bring your own bites. Also, although we provide a number of sleeping bags, they are in high demand, so it might be a good idea to bring your own. Other than that, pack lightly, according to your quirks and move in (or just go home to rest & recharge and come back when you feel ready to go at it again). 

To build your project: Make sure to bring all hardware equipment required to develop your project. This includes laptops, monitors, Raspberry Pi devices, Arduinos, charging cables and whatever gadgets you know are essential to building your project. We can provide adaptors and cables if needed. Also, if your project requires a specific device and you don’t have the possibility to purchase it, we can try to get it for you, if you let us know with at least a month in advance. 

Does HackTM provide accommodation?

The only accommodation we offer is on-location, by organizing a sleeping area with sleeping bags. In case you’re from outside Timisoara and want to book an accommodation, please contact us and we can help you with recommendations.

If I can’t stay the entire 48 hours can I still participate?

Yes. The only condition is that you don’t work on the project from outside the event venue. Other than that, feel free to come and go as you please.

Venue
How can I get to HackTM?

There are several ways to reach Sala Polivalenta Dumbravita:

  • By bus: we’ll provide special buses departing from Punctele Cardinale to the venue. The bus schedule will be made available in due time. 
  • Car pool: join our carpooling group to bundle together; you know what they say: “who rides together, wins HackTM together”.

Uber (this one was kind of obvious, but we had to mention it)

Will there be food?

Ooooh, yes! There will be several food trucks and drink stands from which you’ll be able to get goodies in exchange for COCOs, the event’s own currency. As a participant, you’ll have a certain amount of COCOs included in your ticket. This amount should get you through the 48 hours without any hunger pangs. However, if you’ll need additional COCOs for some extra calories, you’ll be able to refill your COCOs account by card, through the NOW platform or with cash, directly on location.

Can I sleep at the venue?

Yup! We’ll have special sleeping areas prepared for you, but for maximum comfort, feel free to bring your own sleeping bag/mattress/pillow.

Tickets
What does each type of ticket include?

Participant Ticket: Includes access to the event, a free awesome HackTM T-shirt, swag and a predefined amount of COCOs that you can use to purchase food, drinks and merchandise on location. 

Student/Junior Ticket: Same perks as for the Participant Ticket, only that this ticket costs less. We have to support the younger generation. You’re the future, you know. Oh, just don’t forget to bring the signed Parent Approval form in case you’re under 18 yo. 

Visitor ticket: Includes access to the event. That’s it. You won’t be able to join a team or build a project either. You’ll just get the chance to look around and take in the good vibes. Feel free to purchase COCOs and enjoy the crafty bites, drinks and merchandise. 

Until when can I purchase my ticket?

We recommend that you get your ticket as soon as possible. Usually the sale of Participant & Student/Junior Tickets closes Friday, on the first day of the event. Visitors can purchase tickets at any time, even after HackTM has started - just show up and have a look around. 

I can’t come anymore. Can I give my ticket to someone else?

In case such an unfortunate thing happens, please contact us and we’ll figure out a solution together.

Event Check-In
When can I check-in?

Check-in happens at the beginning of the event, on location. You can check-in at any time you want, but the sooner you get here, the sooner you can start working on that winning project.

What do I need to check-in?

If you’re a student: bring your student ID.

If you’re under 18 yo: bring the signed Parent Approval form.

No matter who you are: bring the confirmation of your ticket. We prefer the online version.

Do I have to print my ticket?

Although you need the ticket confirmation in order to check in, please have it on your phone. No need to print it.

COCOs
What are COCOs, are you locos?

COCOs are HackTM’s own currency. These enable all attendees to buy goodies (edible or not) at the event. Participants have a predefined amount of COCOs included in their ticket, which is automatically redeemed at check-in. Both Participants and Visitors can purchase additional COCOs if needed.

What can I buy with COCOs?
Food, drinks (juices, coffee, tea, water) and merchandise available on location.
What if I spend all the COCOs included in my ticket?

You can do a quick refill and purchase more COCOs:

  • Online, through our NOW platform
  • On-location, at the designated Refill points
If I have any COCOs left at the end of the event, can I get a refund?

Yes, if you’re talking about the COCOs that you purchased. If you haven’t spent the COCOs included in your ticket, those are gone COCOs.

Teams
Do I need-need a team to participate?

No, you can fly solo if you’re a lone ranger, so have a crack at it! But you know what they say, the more the merrier.

What’s the maximum number of members a team can have?

All teams can have a maximum number of 5 people, with the possibility of a 6th member, but only if he/she/they/it is a designer. Yes, a team of one is still a team (high-five yourself, frisky one!).

What if I don’t have a team, but I really-really want one?

If you don’t have a team, there are several ways to go about it:

  1. On the first day of the event, pitch your project idea on stage to convince other people to join your cause. You’ll have 60 seconds, so make them count. 
  2. Listen to the project ideas pitched on stage and join a cause. 
  3. Check out if any of the already established teams need more people - as in… go and ask them.
I have a team! How do I register my team?

All teams, even the one-(wo)man teams, will have to register on the NOW platform on the day of the event, before the judging starts*. Here’s how:

  1. Enter the NOW platform by using your e-mail address as username and your ticket number as password.
  2. Create a team and have your team members join OR join the team created by another one of your colleagues.
  3. Hit register/join.

*If you don’t register your team on the NOW platform, you won’t be taken into consideration for any of the prizes. You can still hack, but you won’t be taken into account for the Grand Prize or for the Sponsors’ Prizes. Seriously. So do it.

Prizes & Rules
What type of projects are expected?

HackTM is an open hackathon, so you can build whatever hardware or software project your geeky heart desires. Make it as outrageous, exotic, impossible-­to-­classify, supercalifragilistic, what-is-this type of project. We can’t wait to be flabbergasted! 

However, make sure you surprise us in a positive way. We will not tolerate any offensive projects that disturb the good vibes of HackTM. 

Here’s a taste of past projects to get a slight idea of what we mean.

Can I change my project during the competition?

Sure. But the clock is ticking. Tik-tok, tik-tok.

What programming language can I use?

Whichever programming language you want. We’ll reward the participant proving she’s/he’s The Highlander of a specific language or the first one that invalidates this singularity claim.

Am I allowed to build on past projects?

Uhm, no. Sorry, not sorry. Only fresh code allowed. You can build on existing frameworks, however, only your contribution will be judged.

Do I need to push my code to GitHub?

We strongly encourage it. You came here to show off, didn’t you?

What hardware do I have to bring?

Laptop & charger are a must. Also, all other hardware bits and pieces needed to make your project work: Arduino, Raspberry PI, monitors, gadgets and the list can be as long as your imagination. Plan ahead and come prepared.

Can you provide any hardware?

We’ll have extension cords and internet cables, in case the hack hits the fan. Also, if you need any specific devices that you can’t afford to buy, we can try and get them for you IF and ONLY IF you let us know at least a month in advance.

What happens if I get stuck?

Ask a mentor. Yep, we’ll have mentors ready to help you out. Just look around and you’ll easily spot them, as they’ll wear special T-shirts (and they’ll probably have that geeky excited look that seems to say “Can I help?!”). If you’re too shy to ask a mentor, send us an email or whip-up a message on Facebook and we’ll answer as soon as possible.

Do I need to be physically present at the location to participate?

Yes. You need to check-in at the event and work on your project from our venue. In case you need to take a break or your real-life is calling you, you are free to go and come back as you please, but you’re not allowed to work remotely.

Does HackTM get to keep my code or idea?

Noup. We barely have time to manage and implement our own ideas, so you’ll keep full ownership. We only want to make sure we have the bragging rights to mention that your empire started at our humble hackathon, when you’ll launch your IPO.

Judging
Who will be on the jury?

The jury will be made up of industry experts and IT professionals from local companies. They’re knowledgeable, cool people, who’ll keep an open mind above anything else. They’ll snoop around and ask questions so make them your friends.

What are the criteria used to award the Grand Prize?

There are no set-in stone criteria. Each judge will be on-the-look for something else so try to get a feel of what might impress your judge by talking to him/her/it. Most judges award points based on coolness/originality, complexity, completeness and UI/UX design.

What are the criteria used to award the Sponsors’ Prize?

Each sponsor will award a prize to the project that best answers the needs/requirements of their category. Usually, the official criteria will be announced by each sponsor at the event, but don’t be shy to go and ask for clarifications on D-Day. Make sure that your project offers a relevant solution to the sponsor’s proposed issue and don’t forget to be crazy-original, bold and outrageous. Bring out your inner badger (or whatever spirit animal you prefer)!

How is the Grand Prize awarded?

For the Grand Prize, we have a two-step voting process:

  1. The jury vote: Each judge will be randomly given a number of teams to evaluate. The judge will visit these teams and will compare them in pairs, selecting a favorite out of each two consecutive teams they visit.
  2. The public vote: The top 8 teams (according to the votes given by the jury) will present their projects on stage and then everybody will vote to choose the Grand Winner. 
How are the Sponsors’ Prizes awarded?

At the same time the judges visit their teams, sponsors will also drop-by to see what you’ve achieved. Each sponsor will choose and announce the winner for their category. It’s totally up to the sponsors who they choose. In case you have questions about their criteria, ask them at the event.

When will the judging take place?

Gather your bearings, polish your code & design and be prepared Sunday around noon. More details will be announced during the event, on the NOW platform. Keep a close eye on it.

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Uhm, my question is not on this list. Who can I contact?

Ooops. Let’s fix that. Contact us at [email protected] and we’ll try to give you the answer you’ve been looking for. At the event, stalk us and don’t be shy to ask by pulling our sleeve. We’ll be wearing special staff T-shirts that will be hard to miss 👀 .

© HackTM 2020. All rights reserved.