Our friends over at Bootstrapper Studios, the makers of our app demo video for Pay Up Sucka, have been hard at work working on our documentary. To make it more digestible, we’ve decided to make it 2 5-minute parts vs 1 10-minute film.

Here’s part 1:

Now, a little bit of explanation is probably needed on how this film came to be.

We love hackathons as a team, for many reasons. I’ll break the reasons out here and give a little bit more background. The purpose of the film was to put in video what we have in words down below. It also introduces you to our team and should help you understand how we act and how we think.

1. A Good Challenge

I think all programmers inherently like challenges. It’s sort of a requirement if you want to be a good programmer. Hackathons give you that challenge. “In x amount of time, make a working app. Go!” We like to see how far we can get in that specified time. In this case, we didn’t use the official start time at home, but instead used the actual onsite hackathon as our time constraint (of roughly 3 working days).

2.  A Chance to Come Up with Our Own App Idea

We excel particularly well in challenges where we get to come up with our own app idea. We took first place at the Sears Dev Challenge by coming up with the winning app idea. (Look for it to launch real soon!) We took second at the Novartis Health Challenge by coming up with an app for caregivers of Heart Failure. (Look for a write up and breakdown of the app soon). At the Salesforce Hackathon, we came up with what we think is a great app idea: Mobileade. It’s an app to help any sales team track mobile calls better. Despite the fact that it didn’t win, we’re still moving forward with the app as we think it’s a great idea.

3. An Opportunity to Hang Out and Break Bread

Omega Ortega is a fairly distributed team (only 2 of us see each other in person regularly). Because of this, we look for reasons to come together and hang out. When we do a hackathon, we often don’t eat the food provided. Not that we don’t appreciate the offer, but we like to use that downtime as bonding time. There’s nothing better a team can do to boost morale and become tighter than to share a great meal. The ability to catch up on life and share our dreams is priceless.

4. Team Betterment

We walk away from each hackathon as a better team than we were before we started it. The reason for this is that we treat each and every hackathon as if it was a real paying project for a real paying client. We use the same tools and processes that we use with our clients. However, since we’re in the same room, we get to optimize how things are done so that when we go back home, those optimizations are put into practice.

Part 2 Coming Soon

Part 1 is the first half of the documentary. We hope you like it and enjoy getting to know us. Hopefully, for those who have never done a hackathon, this helps you understand what they are and why people like us like them. Part 2 will be coming later this week, so stay tuned for it!