TADHack mini London Review Part 1 of 3

tadhack mini london

Thank you to everyone who was involved in making TADHack mini London an amazing event. We had 98 people registered both onsite and remote, and over the 2 days we had 70 people take part (both onsite and remote) generating 18 world-class hacks, which demonstrate the power of telecom application development: from controlling drones in the English countryside from the middle of London, through start-ups discovering they can extend their applications and services to any phone with a couple of hours of development, to innovative teaching applications using WebRTC. TADHack mini was in competition for developer attention with 2 other weekend hacks taking place in London: NASA’s Space Hack and Major Leagues Hacks, search on Twitter to see which event had the biggest buzz in London over that weekend 😉

Before getting into the meat of describing the hacks an important point needs to be addressed, on the prejudice that exists in our use of the word telecommunications. I’ve stated this before, we’re reclaiming the word telecommunications from the legacy telco industry for all developers, now that the internet has democratized it. We proudly use the word, please check out the hacks in this weblog to see the amazing potential of adding telecom capabilities to your applications, services and business processes. In the Bay Area the cowardly term to use is Cloud Communications, cloud being a BS marketing term for anything not onsite, and communications is what PR people do. Cloud Communications = BS PR 😉 We’re not scared to use the word telecoms and ask all developers to not be scared by the term, join us and see what amazing potential it holds for you.

Compared to TADHack Global in June last year, we had more mash-ups, more risk taking with some amazing feats of coding, more newbies making their first hacks, and more web developers discovering how easy it is to, as Igor CTO of LyteSpark eloquently put: ‘remove the distinction between “internet” and “phones”’. The list of winners is given in this TADHack weblog. Our focus here is to quickly review all the hacks. Many developers / entrepreneurs (deventrepreneurs?) simply visited TADHack, like Joey Connor who joined in to discover new capabilities, meet potential collaboration partners, and get himself ready for TADHack Global 13-14 June.

Now onto the hacks, this weblog lists the first 6 from Rob Pickering from ipcortex, Svetlin Mladenov from Viblast, Andrey Zakharchenko, Raj Sunder from Wootag, and Sam Machin. You can see all TADHack mini pitches at YouTube playlist. I list the pitches in the order they were presented on Sunday afternoon.

Keevio Eye, Rob Pickering (@RobinJPickering), CEO ipcortex, UK

This was a great hack to kick-off, showing real-time video over WebRTC from a drone in Bletchley Park with a Raspberry Pi blu-tacked (yep that’s correct blu-tacked) to it to run the WebRTC stack.  We’ll have separate weblogs on all the hacks going into the implementation details, GitHub repositories, etc.

Viblast Showcase, Svetlin Mladenov (@s_mladenov), Lead Developer and Co-founder Viblast, Bulgaria (Remote entry)

At TADHack we allow some showcases, these are near commercial or commercial cool services from small companies that need help getting broader awareness of the good work they are doing related to a sponsor’s technology. Viblast has an interesting WebRTC based peer to peer content delivery network.

WebRTC Computer Vision, Andrey Zakharchenko, Developer, Russia (Remote entry)

This was a fun hack, ably demonstrated by Andrey receiving an honorable mention from Dialogic. It analyses a video stream to check if the viewer is watching, and if not sends an alert.  Andrey’s demo is so straight-faced as he demos a student falling asleep, its classic. His hack uses the Dialogic XMS media server and the Oracle WSC.

Wootag Interactive Video Experience, Raj Sunder (@rajsunder) CEO Wootag, Indonesia (Remote entry)

Wootag is an interactive video provider, that is they tag videos at particular points with calls to action, and for TADHack they made one of them a ‘click to call’ with Apidaze. Wootag has experimented with click to call services in Indonesia and experienced call through rates as high as 22%, which is amazing compared to western markets. They were a joint winner of Apidaze prize ($500).

Beacon Calling, Sam Machin (@sammachin), Director & Consultant at SamMachin Limited, UK

Sam was showing off his full stack programming skills, with an iOS app, and backend logic using the Truphone API. Its taking calling back to the days when people called places, and if a mobile phone is near a bluetooth beacon the call is diverted from the beacon’s number to the mobile phone number. This hack won the Truphone Prize of $1000.

Asticus, Guilherme Jansen, Developer, Brasil (Remote entry)

Guilherme gave a good practical demonstration of how easy it has become to create information services for phone numbers.

Other hacks will described in Part 2 and Part 3 of this series.

A big thank you to everyone who gave their time, congratulations to all the winners, thank you to Ideal London for providing a great venue and Feast Food for the catering. Please register for TADHack Global 13-14 June, locations include Chicago, London, Lisbon, Madrid, Istanbul, Israel, Sri Lanka (Colombo and Jafna), New Dehli, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Australia, and the comfort of your home (remote). Plus we’re trying to line-up additional locations in Dubin and Rayleigh, North Carolina. TADHack is a new kind of event, it is not easy to pull off, unfortunately many marketing people struggle to understand its relevance. My request is to all the CxOs who see the relevance of what we’re doing, start innovating in your marketing and take part in TADHack!

Below is the list of weblogs about people’s experiences with TADHack mini London:

Sebastian Schumann
Sacha Nacar