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Hackathon Starter Kit

Resources to help you organize and facilitate your own hackathon event.

📂 Demo

We have added a 'Hackathon-Todo' project. It's our latest to-do Check it out!

Hackathon Starter Kit

The purpose of this project is to provide a baseline of understanding, steps to be taken, best practices and guidance on how to run a Hackathon. This project will contain information on how to run two types of Hackathons:

What is a hackathon?

"Hacking" is most commonly used in the negative sense of an illegal act of computer crime to access resources which would otherwise be inaccessible. In the context of a hackathon though, the definition is one of the alternatives meaning to "cut with rough or heavy blows" (the act of intense focus on the project) or "manage; cope; muddle through". From a historical prospective, a "hacker" was one who's motives were to build and create, and a "cracker" was someone motivated by destruction or theft - read more here.

At its core, a hackathon is a short-burst event in which individuals typically form teams to intensively collaborate on projects which are designed around the problem statement or ideas provided by the hackathon organizers.

A hackathon is underpinned and identified by these core tenants:

  • Creative problem solving. While there are no laws or rules a hackathon must include a technological (software, etc.) component, it most often does. If it doesn't include a technology component, it is usually more akin to a brainstorming session.
  • A gathering of individuals working together, attempting to solve a common problem or set of problems. Yes, you could be a HACKATHON TEAM of one, but given the short duration of most hackathons and the complexity of problems to be solved in the world today, diverse teams are almost always going to be more effective in creating solutions to a problem.

Here are some things we think that are critical to running a hackathon:


This project welcomes contributions and suggestions. Most contributions require you to agree to a Contributor License Agreement (CLA) declaring that you have the right to, and actually do, grant us the rights to use your contribution. For details, visit https://cla.opensource.microsoft.com.

When you submit a pull request, a CLA bot will automatically determine whether you need to provide a CLA and decorate the PR appropriately (e.g., status check, comment). Simply follow the instructions provided by the bot. You will only need to do this once across all repos using our CLA.

This project has adopted the Microsoft Open Source Code of Conduct. For more information see the Code of Conduct FAQ or contact [email protected] with any additional questions or comments.


This project may contain trademarks or logos for projects, products, or services. Authorized use of Microsoft trademarks or logos is subject to and must follow Microsoft's Trademark & Brand Guidelines. Use of Microsoft trademarks or logos in modified versions of this project must not cause confusion or imply Microsoft sponsorship. Any use of third-party trademarks or logos are subject to those third-party's policies.

This content is a preview from an external site.
All attendees, sponsors, partners, volunteers and staff at our hackathon are required to agree with the Hack Code of Conduct. Organisers will enforce this code throughout the event. We expect cooperation from all participants to ensure a safe environment for everybody.

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