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HackSantiago: The experience

Editor’s noteKarla Lopez is a Start-Up Chile entrepreneur, JobConvo co-founder, a platform which provides online job interview solutions, currently on their public beta. You can follow her @vivoandando

We were looking for ways to bring together Startup Chile entrepreneurs and Chilean developers when the idea of HackSantiago came up. Hackatons are always a good opportunity to experiment with different technologies and start new projects and we thought that would be a great way to connect local developers to an international network.

The first step was finding a place that could provide the informal and collaborative environment we were planning to the event. Co-Work was a perfect fit. Teaming up with a local partner like Huevapi also helped find our way into sponsors and other partnerships.

HackSantiago was received with a warm welcome by the online tech media in Chile. It makes us think why there aren’t more hackatons around here. Santiago has lots of talent and they are hungry for real challenges and opportunities to get together and build great things.

The results?

New connections started, ideas came to life and people had real fun. From all the 20 ideas pitched on friday, 11 got selected by teams up to 5 developers and 9 managed to be ready to demo on sunday night. From a ping-pong game using post-its as paddles to a mobile bank transfer app, the jury had a hard time to elect the winners.

One week after the event, some projects have already got some attention from potential investors. Bertrand Fan, one of our Startup Chile buddies, solved TheUnshredder (an Instagram Engineering Challenge) during the hackaton (his hack scored high on HackerNews).

We are very happy and we sincerely hope that HackSantiago sparkle starts a wave of hackatons and others meetups in Chile.

Putting together an event like this is not that hard, anyone can do it, and here is PropiedadFacilJobConvoLoveBlip and Picket tip for Chilean entrepreneurs:

If you are starting an online business and need to find some awesome developers, a hackaton is the best place to find them. Someone willing to spend a whole weekend (with almost no sleep) developing something just for fun has passion and talent enough to help your business go global.