UPDATE 2013-10-01: Nate Porter pointed out that the Hacker League page doesn’t let you sign up. For now, use this Google doc.

A lot of folks on Twitter during ASA this year were chatting about the possibility of a hackathon during ASA 2014 in San Francisco. The reasons for having a hackathon, I think, are myriad; here are some of the various “purposes” that myself and members of the computational sociology listserv have considered:

  • Incorporate computational methods into social science through teh h4x
  • Inspire participants to apply computational methods to common social science problems
  • Create an organizational nexus for computational sociology which makes it a vibrant and visible part of the discipline
  • Develop and foster social ties that strengthen the field and point to the value of non-traditional venues for collaboration
  • Create useful and interesting research products.
  • Solidify connections among sub-community of folks in/around sociology who have a set of skills/tools/interests in things computational
  • Increase visibility of that sub-community, partly by showcasing what can be done
  • To support claim that sociology has a role to play in computational social science and that computation has a role to play in sociology.
  • Connect folks already immersed in these skill areas with folks who are around the edges, curious, etc.
  • To actually impart some new skills/ideas to folks.
  • To actually produce something collectively useful.
  • To lay foundation for something that could grow in future years at ASA meetings or in ASA in general (e.g., a network of folks working with these tools).

I’m really excited about the prospect of this. Laura NorénChristopher Weiss, and I have been plotting to make this thing a reality. Right now we’re trying to gauge how many people would come out to such an event.

If you have even a tiny inkling that you might come to the hackathon, sign up at the Hacker League page.

  • Laura E Noren

    As you mentioned above, I’m in. But I wanted to leave a comment to say the same thing and to mention that my interest stems largely from the hackathon/datathon format. I was part of a team of organizers for an event like this that worked well. I’ve also seen this type of event kind of fall apart.

    Ours will be one of the successful variety, not one of the underwhelming hackathons.

    There will be free caffeine and food. There will be smart, engaged collaborators. There will be clear teams with nobody left drifting around in search of a place to belong. There will be strong presentations and actual progress made. Probably everyone will be inspired to learn something new and will end up with a collection of brand new collaborators for all manner of future projects, computational and otherwise.

  • Trent

    Hi Alex,

    Count me in! This sounds like a fantastic opportunity to learn, share and network with all kinds of people from diverse academic backgrounds. I will definitely spread the word to colleagues who might be interested in this as well.

    • Great, thanks Trent! Point people to the Hacker League page so we can get a count of people as well.

  • Nathaniel Porter

    I don’t see a way to sign up for the Hackathon on Hacker League.

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  • C-dawg

    What is the status of this event?

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