Welcome to the DCG 201 Guides for Hacker Summer Camp 2023! This is part of a series where we are going to cover all the various hacker conventions and shenanigans both In-Person & Digital! This year in 2023 somehow bigger than it was in 2022 and thus we will have a total of 15 guides spanning 3 Months of Hacker Insanity!
As more blog posts are uploaded, you will be able to jump through the guide via these links:
HackCon XI by Major League Hacking
Date: Friday, August 18th — Sunday, August 20th
Accessibility: Currently it’s In-Person Only. MLH Hackcon XI tickets range from $225-$325 depending on when you buy, so we encourage you to purchase early. They also offer scholarships and a number of other available discounts. Email them for more information.
Code Of Conduct: https://static.mlh.io/docs/mlh-code-of-conduct.pdf
MLH Hackcon is an in-person conference that takes place in Copake, New York and teaches organizers skills to build their communities and hackathons.
MLH Hackcon is the official conference for hacker community leaders. It’s an opportunity to unplug, learn, build, share, connect, and celebrate the fact that as organizers and hackers, we are all in this together.
With two full days of workshops, talks, and discussion sessions, there’s something for everyone.
New organizers can learn best practices for running hackathons, workshops, and other community events. Seasoned organizers will also share their experiences and help guide the next generation.
Imagine sitting around a bonfire and roasting marshmallows with hundreds of organizers and hackers from around the world.
At Hackcon, you will have access to high-quality speakers and community leaders from around the world that have experienced the same problems you are dealing with.
The best part of the MLH Hackcon conference is the relationships you build over the weekend. You will meet passionate, smart community leaders just like yourself.
Hackcon is the only conference where hackathon organizers and hacker community leaders can come together, learn from each other, and build relationships.
Major League Hacking (MLH) is the official student hackathon league. Each year, we power over 300 weekend-long invention competitions that inspire innovation, cultivate communities and teach computer science skills to more than 500,000 developers around the world. MLH is an engaged and passionate maker community, consisting of the next generation of technology leaders and entrepreneurs.
MLH is an organization for hackers, by hackers. Whether you’re a complete beginner or a returning veteran, you’ll feel right at home at MLH powered events.
We believe that hackers should have access to the latest and greatest technology. That’s why we partner up with the world’s leading brands to get their products and devices into the hands of hackers. At MLH powered Hackathons, students can expect to have access to everything from microcontrollers to free web hosting and domains. Don’t have a laptop? Don’t worry! We probably have one you can hack on for the weekend!
MLH is always looking for new ways to empower hackers and support our growing community. Whether we’re developing a new product or just making one of the many decisions we make every day, these core values guide us towards our mission of empowering hackers:
MLH exists to serve hackers, as a group and as individuals. Everyone deserves the opportunity to be a hacker and MLHers foster those opportunities.
We Take Out the Trash
No task is too small for an MLHer. We do what needs to get done to make things run, even if that means taking out the trash or cleaning up behind other people.
As a team, we leverage our resources to accomplish the impossible.
Learn. Build. Share.
Our success is the success of others. It is an MLHer’s responsibility to share their knowledge with the world and help everyone build amazing things
Standard of Excellence
We are the professionals. MLHers keep each other accountable to do their best work, down to the smallest detail. No bullshit.
A very unique experience, the MLH HackCon is a community driven retreat where you get to meet other folks who create and support Hackathons. Unlike the camping experience of Chaos Computer Camp, this is more of the Salute Your Shorts, Camp Crystal Lake camping experience of your youth instead of being but naked in the middle of the woods Survival Man-style. The campground will have talks, workshops, trainings and community building activities that will allow you to learn and network from the best. If you ever wanted to start your own Hackathon, wanted to know how one works, or need an honest-to-god vacay, this event is for you!
FROM THE CITY TO CAMP GROUND
There will be FREE Shuttle Busses included in your ticket purchase at various times in New York City that will take you to the venue on Friday that will also take you back to NYC on Sunday when the convention ends.
Please note that the MLH Hackcon venue is approximately 2.5–3hrs from Manhattan. The conference will begin on Friday late afternoon. You should plan to take one of our scheduled shuttles to the event.
Book your flights to arrive 2.5 hours before your preferred shuttle departure time to allow yourself to get to the shuttle pickup point in Manhattan via public transportation.
If you are driving directly to the MLH Hackcon X venue, registration will open at 3 PM ET.
The conference will end Sunday afternoon at 2pm.
Shuttles will making stops at EWR, LGA, and JFK directly from the venue.
We recommend booking your flight to depart at 7:30pm or later make sure you have ample time to check in.
TRANSPORTATION TO THE SHUTTLES
Once you’ve arrived in New York City, here are some transit suggestions for getting to the HackCon Shuttle Stations. You can also find suggestions and specific time information at https://tripplanner.mta.info.
MTA Live Subway Map
New York City's digital subway map. See real-time, nighttime, and weekend subway routes, train arrival times, service…
Offline NYC MTA Subway Map for Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.thryvinc.nycmap&gl=US
Offline NYC MTA Subway Map for iOS: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/new-york-city-subway-map/id683294660?ign-mpt=uo%3D8
One ride on a subway or local bus is $2.75 (transfers are free between modes of transit). 7-day unlimited MetroCards, as well as pay-per-ride options, are available; a $1 surcharge also applies for getting a new MetroCard. MetroCard vending machines are available at subway stations and transit hubs, but not at bus stops. All buses and subway entrances are also equipped with OMNY readers, which will allow you to use a contactless credit or debit card for your fare. If you do not want to leave a digital trail of your travels, we suggest you purchase a MetroCard with cash or coins. Learn more about buying MetroCards at https://new.mta.info/fares/where-to-buy-a-metrocard.
VIA MTA LOCAL TRANSIT
For those who have been away from awhile, in addition to the crappy hard-to-scan MTA Metro Cards, the MTA System has their now RFID NFC Tap-To-Pay OMNI System:
VIA THE AIR TRAIN
VIA MTA BUS
(You will need a MetroCard to ride the MTA. 7-day unlimited options, as well as pay-per-ride options, are available; a $1 surcharge also applies for getting a new MetroCard. MetroCard vending machines are available at subway stations and transit hubs, but not at bus stops. If you plan on utilizing the Express Bus option, one ride is $6.75. You can also purchase a 7-day unlimited MetroCard with Express Bus availability for $62.)
VIA LONG ISLAND RAILROAD (LIRR)
(Long Island Railroad tickets are available for purchase at LIRR stops, including Penn Station. They may be purchased in conjunction with MetroCards at marked kiosks. You will need a MetroCard to get on the local bus.)
VIA NY METRO-NORTH
VIA NYC TAXI
VIA CITI-BIKE RENT-A-BIKE & REVEL SCOOTER
VIA THE NY WATERWAY FERRY
FROM NEW JERSEY (REPRESENT!)
How to Buy a Ferry Ticket with the NY Waterway App
Check out how to buy a ferry ticket for a trip from Hoboken to New York City with the NY Waterway app!Guide to NYC…
DRIVING TO CAMP PONTIAC VIA CAR
CAMP PONTIAC RECON
MLH Hackcon XI takes place on the ancient homeland and traditional territory of the Munsee Lenape, Schaghticoke, and Mohican people and at a camp that uses the name of an Odawa (Ottawa) chief. We are attempting to do our part through land recognition before and during the conference, adopting sustainable practices, and making a donation to Manna-hatta Fund in recognition of our role as settlers and to recognize our responsibility and relationship to Native peoples.
All attendees will be required to submit proof of full vaccination. You are up to date with your COVID-19 vaccines when you have completed a COVID-19 vaccine primary series and got the most recent booster dose recommended for you by CDC. If you have completed your primary series — but are not yet eligible for a booster — you are also considered up to date. We accept any WHO-approved vaccinations.
We will continue to monitor the situation as MLH Hackcon XI gets closer and may change our policy to include proof of a negative test.
ATTEND VIA SCHOLARSHIP
Scholarships cover conference tickets but do not cover travel.
Please remember that we have a limited number of scholarship tickets, so only apply if this will make or break your ability to come to MLH Hackcon.
We offer partial or full scholarships up to the full cost of the conference ticket. If your scholarship is approved, you will be required to provide proof of a flight or other transportation to the conference.
SO ABOUT ALL THOSE SUBSTANCES & BOOZE YOU CONSUME…
MLH Hackcon X has a strict “No Drugs and Alcohol” policy. Please do not bring these to the conference. Tobacco smoking is allowed only in designated areas.
AMENITIES PROVIDED BY MLH
Tickets cover two nights of housing, six meals, snacks, drinks, a swag item, fun group activities, transportation between Manhattan and the venue, and the conference itself.
Looking for things to do when you visit Camp Pontiac? Find places to stay, local events, food and drink and exciting places to visit by checking out Hudson Valley Happenings! Enjoy lunch in picturesque Hudson (where you can stroll along easygoing Warren Street hugging the Hudson River), Rhinebeck (make sure you hit E Market Street and especially Samuel’s Sweet Shop for all things delicious), Millerton (we recommend 52 Main Street or The Millerton Inn), Great Barrington (pizza at Baba Louie’s is a must) or even Lakeville CT (The Boathouse is a favorite). For the adventurer in you, hike at Bash Bish Falls or along the historic Harlem Valley Rail Trail.
DCG 201 TALK & WORKSHOP HIGHLIGHTS FOR HACKCON XI (EST)
This is the section where we have comb through the entire list of talks on both days and list our highlights for the talks that stand out to us. Note that this does not invalidate any talks we didn’t list, in fact, we highly recommend you take a look at the full convention schedule beforehand and make up your own talk highlight lists. These are just the talks that for us had something stand out, either by being informative, unique or bizarre. (Sometimes, all three!)
Friday — August 18th
3:00pm — 7:00pm
Tie Dye with your HCMs
Arts and Crafts
8:00pm — 10:00pm
Welcome & Opening Activity
Kick off Hackcon and get to know your cabinmates at our Opening Ceremony!
10:00pm — 11:59pm
Ladies Storm Hackathons Campfire
Meet outside the Playhouse directly following Opening Cremony to walk together to the Upper Campfire!
Saturday — August 19th
9:30am — 10:30am
The State of the League
MLH CEO and Co-Founder Swift
10:45am — 11:15am
Hack GRRRL: How To Make Your Hackathon More Inclusive for Women
Lavínia Paganini, Alex Luo, Juan Pablo Carmona, and May Márquez
11:15am — 11:45am
Dough-nating Skills: The Secret Sauce behind the MLH Pizza Fund
Alayna Nguyen, Isabel Abonitalla, Gabriela Banaag & Matt Wong, and Abdullah Hasani
12:00pm — 12:45pm
Hacking the Hackathon Organizing Team
4:45pm — 5:45pm
Get the Hack Out of Here
Paul Horton & Cecila La Place
6:00pm — 6:45pm
Workshop: Setting Up your Hackers for Success
Alex Hernandez & Byron Wang
7:00pm — 7:45pm
Fostering Inclusion: Making Tech Tangible For All
Janet Zulu, Anneka King & Danae Wiggins
Sunday — August 20th
9:30am — 10:30am
Discussion Groups: Hackathon Marketing for Dummies: How to Grow Your Audience
10:45am — 11:15am