Calling the hashtag

Calling  #code4oakland as #hashtag  for todays event!

Code for Oakland- Stipends and prize money-almost $6,000 worth


Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, we have $5,500 in stipends and prize money promised to developers who present their projects and are awarded contracts by our panel of judges on behalf of CFO. Here’s the breakdown:

$1500    Ramsell prize

$500      Ramsell prize for youth

$1000    Mozilla

$1000    Pandora

$500      Urban Strategies Council-for work with Re-entry Data API

$500      City of Oakland, for work with Oakland files

$250      Full Court Communications

$250      Full Court Communications

plus  an in-kind prize from Citizen Space, 3 months of workspace( worth $1350)

This is SO amazing!

Code for Oakland: What’s the schedule?

Code for Oakland is a combination unconference/bar camp and a hackathon.  We recognize some people will be there to build apps and compete for stipends and prizes; other will be coming to get ideas, brainstorm, learn about data and perhaps find a team.  We’re structuring the day to accommodate both sets of people. Here’s what the basic schedule is going to look like:

8:30-9: breakfast, sign in-purchase the groovy t-shirts for $10 each
9:00-9:30: Welcome, overview, rules, process, thank yous to sponsors, coordinating team
9:30-10:15: Quick intros/pitches from attendees - putting hack team ideas up on charts (ideas will be numbered, with contact name)
10:15-10:45: Forming teams: Find people to hack with if that’s your prime focus for the day
10:45-11 Break, hackers go off to start coding

Branch conference for folks who are in unconference/brainstorming mode
11-11:15: Finalize unconference session lineup (Data reviews,
technology explanations)
11:15-12:15: unconf session  1
12:15-1:15: lunch for all
1:30-2:30: Unconf session 2

2:30-5pm: Everyone should be prototyping or wireframing their ideas by now
- Concurrently for those who want it:
- 3-4: Unconf session 3

4-4:30 Sign ups to schedule team presentations in auditorium for prizes/stipends competition

5-6pm: presentations

6-6:30: Judges deliberate, attendees debrief

6:30: prizes awarded

6:30-9 PM: Afterparty at Dogwood, 19th & Telegraph Avenue, Oakland

Check out Data 1.0-CFO’s evolving data catalog!

Napoleon famously said “An army marches on its stomach.”  When it comes to Gov 2.0-style bar camps and hack days like Code for Oakland, the saying could be ” The coders ride on the data.”

That said, one of the biggest and most exciting collaborative efforts of planning Code for Oakland was pulling a team together to make sure coders and developers had some idea of what data sources would be available for CFO attendees to us.  This data catalog, a meta-list of data from city, county, state, and national sources, would  be a starting point to access, research and download data to use in the apps people would build.

Only catch?  Well, not only didn’t we have a data catalog, in the case of the City of Oakland, we started with very little publicly available data.  However, over the past six weeks, thanks to the hard work of people on the data team for CFO-Steve Spiker and John Harvey from Urban Strategies Council, Michal Migurski from Stamen Design, Anca Moiscu from Tech Liminal,  Nicole Neditch from the City of Oakland, plus aid from Paul Richardson and Sian Morison, data has been identified, people have been mobilized, and all sorts of new data sets are going online and becoming available.

So, we’re heading into Code for Oakland, one week away, with a much fuller catalog of APIs, GIS files, CSV files and plain old Excel spreadsheets.  Many people across Oakland and beyond have pulled the data together, and there’s a strong interest in taking this early catalog and continuing it-and creating a server space where all of you who find and create data sets you would like to share, can upload and host them (talk to Anca and John Harvey about that).

Links to the data sets are on the data page-if you have data to add, please let us know ([email protected])

DATASF: help us by suggesting other data sets to look for!

An idea for Oakland-from Shayne Martinsen

Here’s an idea from an Oakland resident:

This idea would be in-cooperation of an ongoing effort in North Oakland and could be useful to all of Oakland as well as other cities facing the same issues.  I am part of a community group in north Oakland called the Longfellow Community Association and Friends.  We are constantly trying to make our neighborhood a better, cleaner, safer place to live.  This would be the main purpose for the app I want to propose.

Functions of this App…

1. Assist the city in an ongoing effort of street cleaning-

The user of this app would assist the city of Oakland in cleaning up unwanted garbage dumped on the streets or in vacant lots, as well at clean up unwanted graffiti. When the user sees blight or unwanted graffiti, the user takes a picture and presses the correct associated button which would send that picture, and a mapped location of the undesired community  blight to the appropriate city email (Garbage Dumping, Graffiti, Etc..), Allowing them to access the infected area and send the appropriate  public works crew out to clean the infected area. The user would get a tracking number so that they can have a log of the problems in their neighborhood, which would allow the community to see how effective the city is maintaining its streets.  A data base of all events would be created allowing the city and the citizen to have an accurate table of hot spots, which is a useful tool for everyone involved. With this, the police could patrol these spots more frequently, cutting down the amount of unwanted activities and in turn saving the city money in the long run.

2. Assist the city in making our neighborhoods a safer place to live.

a.) The city of Oakland has a non emergency police number, which you can call when you are witness to undesirable activity (drug dealing, vandalism, loitering, squatting,  animal control,  etc..) If you call this number, the police come out on routine call to break up the un-desirable groups, stop drug dealers, evacuate squatters, etc.. With this app you could send a text stating the issue you are having, and a description of the people involved  with a picture (if possible), and location.  You could also have the phone log you and your location at the time of the report.  This would be sent to the non emergency operator and they could in turn send the police as necessary to the most critical calls. This would allow the creation of a log of the calls for the user, they would follow up with data stating weather the situation has been resolved or not. Then the police and the user could track the progress of events.  This would create a useful data set for the city, community, and police with on-going issues. Helping solve the issues that are logged with the correct resources and actions

b.) The city of Oakland has an emergency police number.  This app could be used to alert the police of a true emergency, while calling 911 the phone would simultaneously log your location and record your conversation for the emergency police to use, to help the victim.  This data could be automatically added to a data base providing important information to the community and police for the use of stopping crime in our communities.

Please let me know if this is an acceptable app for your project…

Thanks, Shayne Martinsen



Looking for a Developer or Designer?

Are you a local non-profit, local or faith-based organization that provides services to people in Oakland and the surrounding area? Do you have an idea for getting information to the community you serve using a smart, feature, some such similar device ? Interested in competing at a national level for prize money totaling $100,000 ?

Welcome to Code for Oakland’s Pre-Session

There will be two Q&A sessions (specifics below), These sessions will answer, or at least work to answer questions around how to structure your idea or proposal so that others can assist you in possibly developing a mobile or web application (computer program) which can then be used in your local service community. Questions you might ask are “Where can I get the information I am interested in sharing with my organization/community ?”, “Do I have to know how to write a computer program ?”, “Who are these people that will help me take my idea and turn it into an application ?”

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Volunteer to help out at Code for Oakland

Want to get involved with Code for Oakland, but not sure what you’d do there? Consider becoming one of our CFO Volunteers!
The CFO team is looking for 12 or so smart, hard-working, responsible people to help out with critical tasks like:

  • manning the door
  • helping attendees navigate the building/rooms
  • manage the food/clean up between meals and snacks
  • help facilitate discussions
  • be a runner
  • ??

If you’d like to volunteer, fill out this form

Volunteers get a cool t-shirt at cost and we’ll buy you drinks, later. Really.

Announcing! Code for Oakland

A one-day bar camp on using local data to build apps for Oakland at Kaiser Center.

June 4, 2011, Oakland, CA, 8:30 AM - 6 PM

Innovate Oakland (InOak),  Oakland Local and Code for America are organizing a day to brainstorm and work on concepts for mobile apps for the Knight/FCC Apps for Communities competition.

What’s going to happen?

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