Open Guelph Hackathon

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Open Guelph Hackathon
February 22, 2014
February 23, 2014
February 12, 2014
University of Guelph
Guelph, Ontario, Canada
Atrium, Science Complex
For the first time ever, the City and University of Guelph are co-hosting a community hackathon in celebration of the internationally-recognized Open Data Day!
  • Saturday, February 22, 9 a.m. to Sunday, February 23, 1 p.m.
  • Atrium, Science Complex, University of Guelph, 50 Stone Road East
  • Parking available at the University Centre, off of South Ring Road
  • The event is free for everyone to attend, please register on
  • Registration deadline has been extended to Saturday, February 22 and walk-ins on Saturday are welcome

The theme of this Hackathon is simple – create an innovative solution using open data provided by the City. Your (or your team’s) goal is to identify an issue or problem in the community and build a new tool or service to address it. Your solution should improve service delivery or enhance the daily lives of community groups, students and residents of Guelph. Review the evaluation criteria below to help guide your efforts, but note, the spirit of this Hackathon is to spark creativity and turn your big idea into an innovative solution. Not only will there be cash prizes and food available, the City will promote the winning solutions to thousands of Guelphites! Exploit the City’s open data for good!

February 22

9 a.m. – introductions and breakfast
9:20 a.m. – questions and answers session
9:40 a.m. – brainstorming and group formation
10 a.m. – hacking begins
12 p.m. – lunch
6 p.m. – dinner
11 p.m. – snacks

February 23

8 a.m. – breakfast
9:30 a.m. – 30 minute warning
10 a.m. – hacking ends
10 a.m. – show and tell
11:30 a.m. – participant break
12:30 p.m. – winners announced, closing statements and lunch


Judging panel


  • First prize – $2,500
  • Second prize – $1,500
  • Third prize – $1,000

Evaluation criteria

  • Your group’s innovative solution must make use of data available from, or expand data collection abilities of the City, to improve services and/or enhance the daily life of residents.
  • You can use any publically available API to support your application or develop your own
  • Use of open source resources is permitted
  • Judges will award a total of 30 points to each innovative solution presented using the following criteria:

Is it functional? (10 points)

  • Does it accomplish its stated goal?
  • Does it work as is, or does it require additional resources (code or data)?

Is it intuitive?  (10 points)

  • Is it easy to understand and use?
  • Is it creative?

Is it impactful?  (10 points)

  • Does it solve a real problem?
  • How many people/groups does it impact (few/many)?

How to prepare

Participants are encouraged to meet in advance of the event to discuss the data ( available, gather groups to formulate ideas on an approach to exploit the data, and undertake any necessary pre-work which may support the approach. Some helpful resources to assist in planning are available below:

For more information

Coordination and support

Rules and regulations

  1. To enter the contest, entrants must register by February 20, 2014 at
  2. To be eligible, participants must register and participate in the 24 hour open Guelph Hackathon. Must include open data provided by City of Guelph and may include other sources of data.
  3. The prizes are $2,500; $1,500, $1,000 respectfully for first, second and third place winners. The Prize must be accepted as awarded and is non-refundable and non-transferable.
  4. Entrants must be 16 years of age or older and be a resident of Ontario, Canada.
  5. The winners must sign a waiver and release, releasing The Corporation of the City of Guelph, its advertising and promotional agencies, the affiliates and related entities of the foregoing and all respective directors, officers, shareholders, owners, partners, employees, agents, representatives, successors and assigns from any liability in connection with this contest or the Prizes as a condition to and in advance of receiving the Prizes, or the Prizes will be forfeited.
  6. By accepting a Prize, the Winner consents to the use by The Corporation of the City of Guelph and its advertising and promotional agencies of his or her name, city, province and photograph, for publicity purposes without further compensation, subject to applicable laws.
  7. Employees and Councillors of the City and members of their immediate families and others with whom they reside during the contest are not eligible to enter.
  8. This Contest is subject to all federal, provincial and municipal laws.
  9. Each entrant agrees to abide by all contest rules. If there is any doubt as to the eligibility of an entrant or of the manner in which an entrant wins a Prize, the Judges shall decide the issue and his or their decision shall be final. Entrants using any scheme, information or method to win a Prize which, in the sole opinion of the Judges, is other than a fair chance, will be disqualified and lose the right to claim a Prize to which they otherwise would have been entitled.
  10. The Corporation of the City of Guelph is not responsible for printing, distribution, or production errors and may terminate or withdraw this Contest at any time without prior notice.
  11. The Corporation of the City of Guelph reserves the right to substitute any Prize by a prize of equivalent kind and value.
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