Calling All Hackers (for Social Good!)

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We here at NetSquared are proud to announce the beta launch of Hacker Helper. Hacker Helper is a website that helps prepare developers for hackathons by providing issue-specific problem statements written by NGOs and activists who are working on the ground to solve social problems. It also provides developers with links to relevant data sets, APIs, and other people who are working on projects to solve the social problem.

How it works:

  • If you are a developer: you can come to Hacker Helper and search for upcoming hackathons grouped by location and focus area. You can also browse problems statement written from the perspective of NGOs; watch videos about the issue that you are trying to solve; find links to datasets, APIs, open source code, other projects that have been developed to address the problem; and find NGOs that are actively working on the problem.
  • If you work for an NGO or are an activist with experience working on social problems: you can create your own issue area pages with problem statements and other information and resources that can help developers at hackathons create useful tools.

Why we created Hacker Helper:
Over the years, we have participated in many hackathons that were not as successful as they could have been. One of the problems we noticed is that developers don’t always build tools that NGOs need or can use to help their work. Another problem we noticed is that developers have to spend too much time at the beginning of hackathons doing research about the problem they are trying to address and searching the Web for datasets and APIs that they need. By making sure to bring developers problem statements written from the perspective of NGOs and doing the research for them so they can save time, we hope to build a better hackathon.

 

Hacker Helper is currently in beta, and we would love it if you would visit the site, contribute content, and use it at your next hackathon. For feedback, questions or partnership opportunities, please write to us at net2@techsoupglobal.org.