The inspiration for WeHack came from a mixture of our first-time hackathon experiences and user-questioning/interviewing. We knew from our personal experiences that joining a hackathon as a business person or designer can be nerve-wracking, especially if you have no coding experience. The primary research we did also shared the same pain points, as although many feel that there is a place for business and design at a Hackathon, many are too intimidated to even apply. Passionate about making this happen, we hit the ground running.

What it does

WeHack is a web application that helps make hackathons more accessible for first-time hackers (especially designers and business-minded individuals). It helps users build teams through an effective search tool that uses "role tags" (allowing you to search for someone who's a designer/developer/business or look for certain skills), uses text notifications to remind you about upcoming hackathons, applications deadlines and team requests and provides a starter-kit for first-time hackers with minimal coding experience to get their feet wet.

How we built it

We used HTML, CSS, and Javascript to build the front-end of our web application, Python with Django to build our back-end database where we stored user information, the Twilio.api and Node.js to send text messages to users and Invision FreeHand and Marvel to build our mock-up designs.

Challenges we ran into

We ran into a number of challenges along the way, both technologically and business-wise. In our development, we had trouble figuring out what technology stack to use (e.g. React with Node in comparison to HTML/CSS/JS with Django) and once we decided, successfully linking our Django database to our front-end and implementing our Twilio services. We also found some difficulties in organizing our questionnaire and saying Goodbye to some of our initial features.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We are incredibly proud of our commitment to the design-thinking process. We were able to empathize (through conducting user interviews), define (created a persona that represented the challenges and pain points we found from the interviews), ideate, prototype and test (see how our users felt about the changes) our app effectively through 3 iterations. This was our first time using this methodology, and it was very rewarding.

What we learned

Design thinking rocks! Also, planning out what tech stack you're going to use before you start developing is the best way to go.

What's next for WeHack

WeHack doesn't stop here. Next on the road are feature updates that introduce intelligent matching, where WeHack will be able to automatically partner you with your best-suited matches, a messaging platform in the app to talk to hackers/sponsors/organizers and a matching quiz to see how much of a developer, designer or business-person you are!

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