Hacking Matters panel at SXSW

I’m super-excited about the panel proposal, Hacking Matters, that my friend and fellow hacker Tarikh Korula put together for SXSW. Havi Hoffman (@freshelectrons) will be joining us, too. I’ve been to SXSW three times now but have never done a panel, so I hope we get in (vote us up!)

Here’s what I wrote in the comments on the panel picker (I added some links here, which you can’t do in the SXSW comment system). (Read on for some links to some past presentations and blog posts on the subject that I collected that will give you a hint of what we’d be talking about in the panel.)

Hack Days are pure magic — events put together for engineers, by engineers, with the highest signal-to-noise ratio possible. PowerPoint draws hisses, and working demos rule the day. At Yahoo, with the generous help of Havi Hoffman and hundreds of hackers around Yahoo, I put together internal Hack Days on three continents before we did our first Open Hack Day in 2006, where I met Tarikh Korula, who won a prize [along with his partner Josh Rooke-Ley]. In May, Tarikh, Daniel Raffel, and I teamed up with Techcrunch to put the Hack Day together for their Disrupt Conference in NYC. Each event was special in its own way, but common themes and approaches made each one successful.

In this panel, we’ll tell you about our collective experiences with Hack Days and how you can put together your own successful Hack Days, whether you’re a 3-person startup or a Fortune 500 company. We hope you’ll give us a thumbs up! (Chad, @chaddickerson)

I wrote about the magic and unexpected wonders of Hack Days a lot when I was putting them together for Yahoo! — including once when the building hosting us in London was literally struck by lightning — but I’m most excited about giving some updated tips based on helping organize successful Hack Days in entirely new contexts, like the one we put together for Techcrunch Disrupt in NYC and what we’re doing with Hack Days inside a startup like Etsy (which I mentioned in my scaling startups post). Here are a collection of useful things from the past that I would likely be referring to in the panel:

In any case, I’m hoping we’ll see you in Austin next March! (Wait, did I say you could vote for us? Just making sure.)