Cows, Code, and Money: The Old MacDonald Hackathon #haveacow

We’re inviting 50 developers and designers to join us and Silicon Prairie News at our Des Moines HQ to build in our first Iowa-based hackathon. It’s free and we’re giving away a cow, a pig and a rooster for prizes. Seriously.

We’ll kick things off on Saturday, December 1 at 9am. If you’re up for it, we’ll be hacking all day and through the night until the 12pm deadline on Sunday (with some fun here and there along the way). We’ll supply you with food, coffee, beer and entertainment,  you just need to bring the code and creativity. Show off your hard work with pride during demos at noon on Sunday, December 2.

The event is part of our two-year anniversary weekend, a celebration we’re kicking off with a meetup. Along with SPN, we have a few tricks up our sleeve for that weekend, and the Old  MacDonald Hackathon is going to see some of the best. And, thanks to NexGen Communications (and partners, Meraki), we’re going to have crazy fast internet and a ridiculous amount of bandwidth.

So, if you’re a builder with a passion for innovation and disruption, we invite you to register for free today. Not a programmer, but want to volunteer or get involved? Fill out this form. Want to see the hacks during demo day? Register for a free ticket.

More announcements to come! Be sure to follow us on Twitter to stay up-to-date on all things hackathon.

  • http://twitter.com/mikelyons Mike Lyons ∆

    Too bad you can’t own a rooster in the city …

    • http://twitter.com/athomedad Tom Haggas

      What are you talking about? All the biggest cocks live in the city. Everyone knows that.

  • Guest

    I live in India and am seriously considering making this trip to save this cow.

    Although getting the cow back to India might be a little tricky. Not enough cabin space these days.

    • http://dwolla.com Jordan Lampe
    • AchDuLieber

      Most airlines allow for it these days. I’ve flown “cattle class” several times lately — and have even moo’ed going down the gangway. Hah!

  • http://twitter.com/vinitcool76 vinit kumar

    what is the cow for?

    • CaityJones

      The cow is for first place in the hackathon. You can have it anyway you like.. and as Jordan suggested in the previous post, you can even gift it through a charitable organization: http://heifer.org

  • http://gergely.imreh.net/blog/ Gergely Imreh

    Best hashtag ever…

  • http://www.facebook.com/david.chesler David Chesler

    Why buy the milk when you can get the cow for free?

  • RobDiesel.com

    If I win, I want that cow seared with a hot pink center. Salt and pepper on top.

  • Hillary Rettig

    Wow, as someone who is not just a loyal Dwolla user and promoter, but a vegan and animal rights activist, I regret hearing about this promotion. I look at Dwolla as a progressive initiative, but treating animals as “prizes” is anything but progressive. You are really behind the curve on this, and I hope you will consider alternatives.

    • CaityJones

      Hi Hillary – we do appreciate your concern. These prizes are more or less meant to speak to Iowa’s culture and economy. With that said, we’ll also be offering cash equivalent and encouraging donation to heifer.org** and giving people the choice on how they wish to celebrate their success they find over the weekend.

      **This is an international organization that allows you to donate livestock to a third world nation to further a community’s livelihood.

      • http://www.facebook.com/lbdesign Lee Busch

        Even with Heifer, the donated lifestock gets eaten. Maybe not immediately, but certainly before the end of its normal lifespan.

        • http://twitter.com/bpmilne Ben Milne

          This is really interesting. If anyone has livestock that was raised for consumption and once they can change it’s course they wanted to ensure the longest life possible for that animal that ended in a natural burial… How is that done?

          What is the best way to do that? Is that possible?

          There are vegan hackers and vegan CEOs just the same.

          There is a huge opportunity to educate people here and we should use the attention to help people understand how to pull that off in a way that doesn’t end in consuming it. Any guidance you can offer there would be amazing.

    • AchDuLieber

      I’m sure that they would substitute a cabbage as a prize to you.

  • Chuck

    Question. I am a retiree and learning my way around the computer can I attend this just observe? It is never to late to keep learning until it is to late and you wish yo had

    • AchDuLieber

      Only if you would likewise attend a conference of nuclear physicists discussing quantum mechanics and the Higgs boson. I’m a developer myself, but not in this arena. The technical level of this get-together would likely be beyond my scope, and yours as well.

      Does that provide a glimpse of the answer?

    • CaityJones

      Are you interested in hanging out with us and helping organize the event? (We promise, it’ll be a great time!) If you’re interested in helping us out at the event just fill this out: http://blog.dwolla.com/old-mcdonald-hackathon-volunteer/ so we can contact you. We are also giving people free tickets to come in on Sunday to watch the developers demo their products and explain how they came up with their idea, how they built it and how it works. You can grab one here: https://tikly.co/-/1007.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lbdesign Lee Busch

    I also must protest. Cute idea on the surface, but treating a sentient creature as a prize is callous. It’s not an iPad, it’s alive and it feels.

    • CaityJones

      The animals and their value speak to Iowa’s culture and economy. With that said, we’ll also be offering cash equivalent.

  • http://twitter.com/kevin_s Kevin Shannon

    Hi! Should I have an idea and a team before I come? Do I need to tell you who’s on my team?

    • CaityJones

      Don’t worry about having an idea and team lined up before you get here. If you have one already, that’s great! But no worries if you don’t :)

  • http://twitter.com/johnfein John Fein

    Do you guys still need volunteers to help with the hackathon?