White House Announces National Hacking Day

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The White House recently announced that June 1 and 2 of this year will mark a National Day of Civic Hacking.

"Civic Hacking Day is an opportunity for software developers, technologists, and entrepreneurs to unleash their can-do American spirit by collaboratively harnessing publicly-released data and code to create innovative solutions for problems that affect Americans," the Office of Science and Technology Policy announced in a blog post. "While civic hacking communities have long worked to improve our country and the world, this summer will mark the first time local developers from across the Nation unite around the shared mission of addressing and solving challenges relevant to OUR blocks, OUR neighborhoods, OUR cities, OUR states, and OUR country."

"A coalition of organizations, companies, and government agencies have banded together in support of it and will host activities across the country that invite anyone to become part of the civic hacker community, regardless of their skills," writes Katherine Noyes. "The event is taking place in conjunction with Random Hacks of Kindness and Code for America's Brigade meetings, and is being modeled after the Innovation Endeavors Super Happy Block Party."

"Participants could create apps that visualize government data sets or combine them across agencies," writes TechCrunch's Josh Constine. "For example, Census and Department Of Labor data could be mashed up to examine what demographic and industry factors combine to reduce unemployment. Alternatively, while a ton of government data has become 'publicly available' over the past few years, much of it isn’t truly accessible, because it lacks strong APIs or user interfaces. Hackers could build these to lay the groundwork for future innovation with public data."

More information on the event is available at hackforchange.org.