NikeFuel API

Nike will unleash the application programming interface (API) for NikeFuel — the company’s metric for tracking physical activity — during a music hackathon Sunday at South by Southwest.

NikeFuel is the technology behind Nike’s FuelBand, a waterproof wristband introduced in January that measures a user’s movement and syncs with an iPod touch or iPhone.

The API will allow third-party music developers to infuse NikeFuel features into their apps or platforms.

“Nike will be joining the Managers Hack to open up a BETA version of the NikeFuel API for the first time to developers interested in combining music with the Nike+ FuelBand,” hackathon organizer and rep at startup Backplane told Mashable Friday.

Backplane, which created Lady Gaga’s new Little Monsters social network, along with music-streaming service Spotify organized the hackathon to build the future of digital music distribution.

SEE ALSO: Path Adds Nike+ Integration, Lets You Share Running Data With Friends
At the event, hackers have eight hours to create and plan a demo that will be judged by a panel of music industry managers, including Lady Gaga’s manager Troy Carter (who co-founded Backplane), Justin Bieber’s manager Scooter Braun and Roc Nation President Jay Brown. People from Spotify, Pandora, Nike and SoundHound also will help choose a winner.

The Managers Hack will be live streamed (see video below) starting at 3 p.m. ET.

Randi Zuckerberg, who left her role as marketing director at Facebook in August to launch RtoZ Media, will provide commentary throughout the event.


What Is Nike+ FuelBand?


 

Nike+ FuelBand

The Nike+ FuelBand is a new wristband that tracks a metric that Nike has developed called “Fuel,” which measures all physical activity across sports.

Click here to view this gallery.


What Is NikeFuel?


More About: api, backplane, fitness, fuelband, hackathon, health, Music, Nike, sports, spotify, sxsw, sxsw 2012

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Like auditions for a part in a play or tryouts for a sports team, developers have their own rituals for landing hot gigs: hackathons. Facebook recently held its own competitive coding session with teams from 14 schools.

Their assignment was to build an app that solved an everyday annoyance. The students also had a chance to network with Facebook staff at its Palo Alto office and win a cash prize.

Check out the video above to find out what the event was like and who won.

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The Hack of the Week Series highlights a new hackathon programming project each week.



Augmenting vision with details about whomever you’re looking at is no longer just a trick for artificially intelligent machines in a post-apocalyptic 2029.

A team at hackday.tv in New York swept both the people’s choice and first place awards Sunday with an iPhone app that gives you “terminator vision.” The app locates a person’s face through the iPhone’s camera and then reads his or her Facebook profile (you need to be Facebook friends for it to work). It uses the profile to provide you with a name, gender and birthdate on a red-tinted screen. If you want, you can hum some suspenseful music to yourself for the full effect.

Now that we’ve seen it, we’re not sure what took so long for someone to make this app. A face recognition API called Face.com has been making it easy for developers to add this capability since 2009. Isn’t this the next logical step?

“I think it’s the kind of thing that you can throw in the App Store and I will pay $1 for it,” says Reece Pacheco, co-founder of Shelby.tv, while announcing the hackathon winners. “And there are at least a million [people] like me who will do the same thing.”

Rich Cameron and Haris Amin, who both work for DailyBurn during the day, haven’t put the app on the App Store yet for potential trademark issues. “There’s going to be a cease and desist letters as soon as the story runs,” Cameron says.

But of the five hackathons that Amin has participated in this year, he says this was the most fulfilling.

“I just didn’t want to do something useful,” he says. “This was way more fun.”

More About: Gadgets, hack of the week, hackathon, hacking, iphone apps





About 75 developers from across the United States (and at least one from Canada) accepted New York City Chief Digital Officer Rachel Sterne’s invitation to spend 36 hours of last weekend envisioning a better nyc.gov.

The city’s first ever hackathon offered little incentive: There were no cash prizes, no iPad giveaways, and the city has not committed to using any of the designs to replace the website it launched in 1996 and last redesigned more than five years ago. Five of 14 teams whose designs were chosen by judges for various honors will be thanked personally by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg in meetings this week.

“Really the goal was to bridge the worlds of government and technology and having a dialog,” Sterne says. “This really showed what people want.”

So what do people want? Most of the winning designs’ homepages focus on search, mirroring Bing and Google. Sterne saw: StackOverflow-like forums that encourage users to help each other, as well as gamification, location and social elements. In other words, these are the trends you’d expect from coders working with APIs from Google, Bit.ly, Foursquare and other popular web services.

New York City also introduced two new APIs at the event: one that works with 311 and another that constantly updates apps that use the city’s more than 400 open data sets with the latest changes.

Here are the five winning designs. What changes would you like to see on your city’s government website?

Best Use of Social: @NYC

Ask NYC.gov

Best Use of Local: nyc.gov Redesign

A location feature pulls in data based on the user’s zipcode.

Best Use of Location: nyc.gov Local Filtering

A feature pulls in data based on the user’s zipcode.

Best User Interface: Team Apple Seed

For comparison, here is a photo of NYC’s current website:

More About: general assembly, government, hackathon, new york city, rachel sterne

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nyc image

Rachel Sterne is Chief Digital Officer for the City of New York, where she focuses on the City’s digital media strategy. You can follow her on Twitter @RachelSterne or follow the City @nycgov.

Today is the last day to sign up for Reinvent NYC.GOV, the City’s first-ever hackathon. Civic-minded designers and developers who want to help improve NYC government are encouraged to apply at: reinventnycgov.com.

Why have we decided to invite the best and brightest of NYC’s tech community to help us improve NYC.gov? Here’s the backstory.


Improving Our Digital Footprint


When we asked New Yorkers for their input on New York City’s “Road Map for the Digital City,” one of the biggest topics of feedback was NYC.gov, the City government’s main digital presence.

Some New Yorkers praised the scope of information offered and ability to pay bills and look up records online. Others suggested we had room for improvement. Comments included: “NYC.gov is a little hard to navigate/search,” “NYC.gov could use a refresh” and “NYC.gov is just too unwieldy.” The refrain was clear: The site was muddy, but we had an opportunity to make NYC.gov more cohesive and user-centric while integrating it with different communication channels in social media.

Last week, New York City Government and General Assembly announced Reinvent NYC.GOV, our first-ever hackathon to help solve this challenge in an open, transparent, participatory environment.

Taking place July 30 to 31 at entrepreneurship-focused community learning space General Assembly, it’s an important step in our our Road Map to realize NYC’s digital potential. Here are a few reasons why we’re doing it:


Why NYC Is Hosting a Hackathon


  • 1. It will bridge sectors and connect the government and technology communities around a shared challenge.
  • 2. It will encourage collaborative problem-solving and a more open government. We’ve invited developers to share their ideas for improving a major digital “public space.” NYC.gov has almost as many visitors each year as Central Park and should be similarly cared for.
  • 3. It will create a mechanism for the public to share feedback and ideas for a website that exists to serve them.
  • 4. It can serve as a model for other governments, helping to affect national and international change.
  • 5. It will introduce creative and innovative concepts that could help to evolve NYC.gov to be more efficient and effective in serving and empowering New Yorkers.
  • 6. It will provide both individuals and teams with face-to-face access to the City’s decision makers.
  • 7. It creates a precedent and platform for evolving government through open innovation and participation.
  • 8. It will serve as the first step in a transparent design process. We want to gather as much input as possible. This is a way to move quickly to achieve our goals.
  • 9. It helps remove subjectivity from the design process by clearly showing what the public wants and needs.
  • 10. It equips developers with the internal data they need to make user experience decisions, such as analytics, as well as support from our tech partners, including DonorsChoose, ExpertLabs, Facebook, Foursquare, Google, Meetup and YouTube.

We think this model is an important part of New York City’s digital Road Map and feel that it can be an effective piece for other cities, as well. What are your ideas for the future of NYC.gov? Tell us in the comments below or tweet using the hashtag #reinventnycgov.


Image courtesy of Flickr, houyin

More About: dev, developer, government, hack, hackathon, new york, new york city, NYC, nyc.gov, Politics, Social Media

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Hacking for social good is more than just a hacktivist reaction to injustice. Many developers and designers are taking a proactive approach to affecting social change by making web apps that aim to improve individual lives and whole communities, too.

At a recent event in San Francisco, about 100 hackers of all stripes gathered to do exactly that: work around the clock for 24 hours to create apps for social good. This resulted in 17 (still quite new) web and mobile applications with a slightly higher aim than that of your average consumer app.

The hackathon, called Hack for Change, was sponsored by Change.org, and was intended to allow some of the smartest people in the Bay Area to create “any feature or app that does good.”

Most of the apps are not yet launched, but you can click through on the links below for early access and sign-ups.

SEE ALSO: Hacking for Good: Three Ways for Devs to Get Involved

The winners of the day, all of whom received a small cash infusion to help continue building and launching their apps, were three stellar ideas from local devs.

The first-place winner was Good Neighbor, which lets users get quick SMS messages when their neighbors “need a hand with quick tasks or errands.”

Runners-up were FindMeAPet and AnonyMouse. The former is a simple SMS app that notifies users when new dogs arrive at nearby animal shelters. AnonyMouse’s goal is to help people looking for anonymous advice to find guidance and mentorship. Initially, the site will be geared toward closeted LGBT folks.

Other apps built during the hackathon include:

  • AnonyMissing, an anonymous location-based app to report missing persons.
  • Corrupt, an app for tracking and reporting corruption in your area.
  • GoChipIn, which allows users to find volunteers for events they’re organizing.
  • GovContrib, a browser tool that helps users find information on government contributions to charities and lobbies.
  • IGotUGot, a food exchange for home gardeners.
  • PDB, which stands for “personal daily brief,” the kind current and former U.S. presidents receive. These briefs are tailored to each user’s locations and interests.
  • Picketline.us lets would-be activists share the word about boycotts.
  • Piece of Mind aims to create a Kickstarter-funded mosaic of stories from veterans.
  • Safehood lets users keep an eye on their neighborhoods through web and mobile interfaces.
  • ShoppingAdvisor shows users how their decisions as consumers might be affecting the rest of the world.
  • GreatDebate helps community leaders and activists get connected with policy and decision makers.
  • WhatsaboutmyCity is an app for identifying and fixing finite, local problems in a community.

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Hack for Change

Image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Top image courtesy of Flickr, kshep

Disclosure: Mashable is a media partner of Hack for Change.

More About: change.org, developers, development, hack for change, hackathon, hacktivism, hacktivist, social good

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