At Thursday’s Startup Talks Montreal organised by Marek Zaluski at Notman House, an interesting concept emerges.
Startup people have a different way of doing things. We know that. They answer a need, provide an improvement or challenge an approach.
Listening to the young entrepreneurs from Wavo.me, Weroll, Static Pixels and Decode Global on building their idea into a soaring startup, I note the word hackathon comes up a few times.
“I hate interviews,” says Gabriel Lespérance, Wavo.me co-founder. To find the next team member, the next great programmer, user interface and user experience developer, or co-founder, attend a hackathon.
Why? You work together in a fun environment where people are wearing a t-shirt, jeans and sneakers, are seated comfortably at a table with their laptop or device and are there to brainstorm, discuss, talk, laugh and collaborate to produce an idea, a project or a usable application by the end of the day.
I attended my first hackathon, Hacktaville, on September 8 at McGill University and the experience is unforgettable. It is exhilarating to get together with people you just met and make something. Michael Mulley, Fletcher Tomalty, and I from matchFWD, took part in Hacktaville.
Ideas and projects people coming to Hacktaville Sept 2012 wanted to work on
Brainstorming sessions at Hacktaville!
Fletcher and I combined forces with undergraduate and graduate students at McGill’s School of Environment and School of Computer Science, as well as other disciplines. After a few hours of brainstorming and programming between workshops, we collectively created and presented: BetterOff – an app to let you know of the cost in money, in fuel and in polluted air of engine idling. Say what? Yes, when you park your vehicle and keep the engine turned on for whatever reason, you are spending money on fuel to stay in place. Meanwhile, the exhaust gas is creating toxic smog that joggers, babies, elderly people, asthmatics, and of course you and me inhale.
Back to job interviews. These startup co-founders and hackers are on to something. If you want to know how you’ll enjoy working with someone, then work with them for a few hours!