diversity goal met
projects available under open source license
better than a 10:1 participant to mentor ratio
The Reality Virtually Hackathon is a purpose-built hackathon community of 400 participants selected from approximately 1,600 applicants to create original cross reality (XR) work. The hackathon is a learning experience that deepens the extended community’s understanding of how immersive technology can be applied to solve real-world problems. It takes place in the iconic MIT Media Lab, overlooking the breathtaking Boston skyline in the heart of Cambridge’s tech scene-- a setting that inspires the most creative work.
The guiding principles of the Reality, Virtually hackathon rest on interdisciplinary teams. Networking with new people, and exposure to new ideas and skill-building workshops set the stage for impassioned individuals to fuse into teams, with each team sharing a common vision to implement an impactful, original idea. The distillation of the approximately 400 unaffiliated people into teams of up to five individuals produces a creative dynamic, resulting in unique applications of immersive technologies to create ingenious, never-before-seen XR experiences and applications
The distribution of participants will be 50% students and 50% working practitioners. We will meet or exceed last year’s diversity and inclusion results of 43% female with 53 races/ethnicities and countries of origin represented
If the Reality, Virtually Hackathon holds true to past events, it will have life-changing impact. For example, Gautham Pasupuleti, a 2017 participant, developed his winning submission into a UNICEF-supported pediatric eye care and healthcare project for under-resourced geographies. Two-time hackathon winner Jackie Assar joined Google’s hardware team along with her teammate Anish Dhesikan, who is now a software engineer on the Google AR team. Companies formed from winning teams, such as 2016 winner Waypoint RX, have gone on to be acquired (Waypoint was recently acquired by PTC.)
Last year’s hackathon–the largest ever immersive event–attracted sponsors such as Samsung, Microsoft, AT&T, Google, HTC VIVE, HP, Autodesk, and Ricoh’s Theta camera group. Last year’s submissions represented fields such as education, healthcare, entertainment and storytelling, commerce and industry, and human/social interaction.
of learning, building, new people and new ideas
Participants in previous years have asked for more time to build, so we’ve added a fifth day to the schedule to expand creative time to almost 60 hours. Another request by participants was the opportunity to see the submissions built by other teams. On the last day of the hackathon, beginning right after the awards ceremony, the Insider Expo will begin, where participants can visit other teams’ tables to see their creative and original work. The hackathon will close with a public expo for the Boston/Cambridge AR/VR technology community at large.
The hackathon will kick off on January 17, 2019, with a full day of skill-building workshops on XR design, development, and XR platforms like the Vive, Hololens, and MagicLeap. Workshops will feature speakers covering hardware, development methodologies, and immersive design concepts.
Skilled in XR design, development, and with domain expertise in verticals such as healthcare and medicine, 40 mentors will help teams throughout the hackathon, coalescing individuals into teams, ideating, creating, troubleshooting, debugging, and refining for submission to the judges.
The Reality, Virtually Hackathon is a platform that cultivates unique innovations in the field of immersive technology. Our mission is the creation of a community of inclusion, where imaginative minds across all dimensions of diversity can collaborate to inspire innovation and build better together.