In the beginning of June, Tech Data & Snook hosted a webinar with Early Bird Tech Data Hack ticket holders. Below you'll find a video recording of the full session as well as a transcript of some of the questions asked and answers provided.
Please get in touch if you have any further questions. Don't forget to join the Yammer group to connect with fellow hackers, share ideas, and start putting together your Tech Data Hack team.
Q & A Transcript
What is the hack challenge?
Your challenge is to create, publish, manage, and measure compelling audience experiences: “Design and build an interactive user guide to help users navigate a space, event, service, transportation network, or other connected systems. The guide should feature content delivery, statistics tracking, media, and an interactive interface (for example 3D rendered, picture-based, dhtml, or java).”
Are we to develop something which will be of benefit for Microsoft? Education? Further education? Schools? Elderly people?
You have a full creative license as to what the output of the hack is. It should be something efficient, 'new generation', web optimised, and something to access data in a meaningful way.
What is 'off limits' or 'on limits'? What can you tackle?
We reiterate the creative license point. However, remember that Microsoft Inspire 2017 is a family show so it must be demonstrable in a family environment. Beyond this point, the solution can be anything. Looking at web tech that exists now, it's incredible what can be achieved in a browser window. We can provide specs and collateral to provide some data to work with, but whether you use it is up to you. We talk about Azure being the requirement but it's your choice if you want to build your own environment. Anything is possible as long as it's running on the Microsoft eco-system.
How will the hack itself work?
You can come as an individual or as a team. We will work together on Friday to form teams. There is no perfect number but we think groups between 3 and 6 are best. You’ll be watered and fed throughout.
I’m coming on my own - is that OK?
Don't be put off coming without a team - lots of people are coming on their own. Come along to the hack and we'll help form teams around issues, ideas, and skills.
Can we hack through the night?
If you wish you can hack all night long as we have 24-hour access to the venue.
Who are the mentors?
We'll have Jose Mercado from Microsoft, Frank Bennett from Cloud Industry Forum, as well as George Wood, Rob Rijkhoek, and Tiago Fernandez from Tech Data. Our mentors come from a commercial perspective - they can help with the product concept in a commercial context. They can help with baseline feedback on the concept but also with the commercial application of that solution. They know the market really well and will help you understand whether your ideas can be commercialised and how to access end users.
Who are the facilitators?
Snook and Tech Data staff will be facilitating the hack, helping you create teams, develop ideas, and answer design and tech questions that come up.
What's the prize?
The winners get the chance to showcase their idea at Microsoft Inspire 2017 in Washington DC, one of the largest tech conferences in the world, all expenses covered (including flights, accommodation, exhibitor tickets, and costs to attend the conference of a cumulative value of $5,000). Tech Data are a diamond sponsor for Microsoft Inspire 2017. They will have a large central stand that you will be invited to take a place at to show your solution. The end product can look however you want it to. Tech Data will have large format displays, tablets, and other tools to demonstrate your solution.