Hack4Europe! summary

During the second week of June Europeana foundation have organized a series of four hackthons under the common slogan Hack4Europe! Events were organized by local partners in Poznań, London, Barcelona and Stockholm. Polish hackathon was organized by Poznań Supercomputing and Networking Center and The Kórnik Library of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

All hackathons aimed at development of innovative applications created on top of data about 18 million of cultural heritage objects collected by Europeana. Developers competed in four categories: application with greatest commercial potential, application with greatest potential for inclusion, most innovative application and audience award (this one was voted by developers).

As a result Hack4Europe! Events gathered 85 developers, who have prepared 48 prototypes. The most common development themes included applications designed for mobile devices, applications using the potential of social networks, solutions allowing users to curate content, integrating Europeana content into various games, connecting cultural heritage data with Wikipedia and finally various visualizations showing how various objects are related.

Polish edition of Hack4Europe! was held on 7-8th of June in Działyński Palace in the heart of the Poznań Stary Rynek. There were 18 participants from various places all over the Poland, during two very intensive days managed to create 8 prototypes. Three of them were awarded by Jury:

  • “Art4Europe” was awarded as the application with greatest commercial potential. This project was created by Jakub Jurkiewicz , Marcin Szajek , Jakub Porzuczek and Tomasz Grzywalski who represented ITraff Technology.
  • Zbigniew Tenerowicz and Piotr Kaleta (students from Poznań University Technology) created the most innovative application called “Europeana Field Game”.
  • The winner of greatest social inclusion category was Hackmemory a simple game developed by Bartek Indycki and Darek Walczak. This game also won the audience award.

Rest of the prototypes were tools allowing for integration of Europeana API with Google Maps and with MediaWiki. It is also worth to mention that awards for best projects were funded by Speed Up Group sponsors of Poznań Hack4Europe!

Authors of the winner in the greatest commercial potential category created application which allows its users to identify given art work using picture taken by the camera of their mobile phone. Art4Europe identifies given object, presents the description of the object, apart from this it can also translate it to any European language and read this description aloud using speech. Users might be also interested in buying reproductions or books about given art work.

In “Europeana field game” user can “carry” and pin elements to a location and see elements pinned to a location by other users. The game encourages geotagging by introducing quests to accomplish and interaction with other users. The geotags created by players can be later used to suggest interesting Europeana content for everyone based on location data.

The last winner Hackmemory (http://hackmemory.drivent.pl/memory/start) is a simple educational application for kids and adults based on well know memo games. Players have to find two exactly matching pictures. After finding each pair user can read about the content of the picture. User can create his/her own quiz and simply share it with friends on using various social media. The content of the puzzle comes from Europeana and it is filtered by the creator of the quiz (i.e. teacher).

Polish winners took apart in second round to compete with applications awarded during hackathons in Barcelona, Stockholm and London. The results of this final round were announced a few days after last the end of last hackathon. We are very glad to announce that Art4Europe won once again! Apart from Polish project, also three other applications were awarded:

  • Casual Creator (developed during London hackathon) application which facilitates using pictures of the cultural heritage objects in teaching.
  • Time Mash (Stockholm) fully functional geo-location aware search of Europeana for mobile phones. Users can take photos and associate them with existing Europeana objects. Through an inbuilt function to overlay new pictures with Europeana pictures, a seamless “Then-Now” effect is created. The new photos are uploaded with the current GPS position so the app can also function as a geo-tagger tool for Europeana.
  • Timebook (Barcelona) the app integrates content from Europeana and DBpedia and presents it in an easy to use format with, for instance, posts for famous quotes, friends status for influential persons and photos of paintings.

Hack4Europe! awards ceremony was organized on 16th of June during the Digital Agenda Assembly in Brussels. Winners received prizes from European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes.

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