CodeDay Portland!

Monday November 05, 2012

This weekend I attended my first ever codeday/hackathon. The event was hosted by StudentRND, and was at Urban Airship. This was the first time StudentRND has hosted an event in Portland, and it was awesome. I drove up with 2 friends from Corvallis to Portland on Friday, and Saturday we arrived at Urban Airship for a 25 hour coding marathon (Yay day lights savings time).

The event started off with presentation from a local entrepreneur; Ken Westin, creator of GadgetTrak. Shortly after, each person got to pitch their ideas, and from there we formed teams while eating pizza. I ended up grouping up with my Co-Worker Cezary Wojcik; who attended the event had the idea to create a new version of John Conways "Game of Life." The idea was that instead of only having dead or alive tiles, we have multiple terrains (tiles) which a population can live in, and then the user can decide where to promote population growth by clicking on the tiles. These few ideas where the basis of our game.

From the beginning there were some people interested. Our final team consisted of about 6 high school students, Cezary, and myself. Cezary and I wanted to do make the game using HTML5 and the canvas element. This was my first time using any of the new HTML5 features, but I can say that I learned a lot. I also found out how 25 hours can feel both very short, and very long at the same time. In the end though, we were able to get the game working, and present it to the judges. While we never intended for the game to work on mobile devices, it did end up working for our judges iPads quite well actually, and we were awarded best mobile app. If you want to try the game yourself, you can find Game of Life v2.0 here.

For more information about the CodeDay visit StudentRND's Portland CodeDay page here.

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