This blog was co-authored by Dave Casavant, Chris Venne and Bhavna Balani.
This Thursday, more than 100 engineers in five international locations will participate in our largest-ever Pega Hackathon. Fueled by caffeine, engineers will work through the night on bringing dozens of original ideas to life. The Pega Hackathon, our fourth one to take place, gives developers an opportunity to research and use Pega technologies to prototype and build new features, tools and product enhancements. At the end of the 24-hour development period, participating teams present their work to the entire company.
The Pega Hackathon has come a long way from its inception three years ago. What initially began as a grassroots project focused on improving company culture has evolved into the fastest-growing and largest internal creative initiative since Pegasystems adopted Scrum. The first Hackathon consisted of a dozen projects and merely 30 engineers in one location – Cambridge, Mass. Each Hackathon since has increased significantly in size and now takes place across the globe to include engineers in Cupertino, Cambridge, Amsterdam, Krakow, Hyderabad, and Bangalore.
Here’s what makes this one even more interesting: 100-plus engineers world-wide will simultaneously begin development at 11 a.m. EST on Thursday, Sept. 11. At the conclusion of the 24-hour development period at 11 a.m. Sept. 12, participating teams will be invited to showcase their latest creations with the rest of the company. Five prizes will be awarded including “Best User Interface” for the project with the most polished user experience; “Ready to Ship” for the project determined to have best met our company definitions of done and complete; and “The Red Porsche Award” for the project that most positively impacts the performance of our industry-leading software.
"The Hackathon has been an amazing source of research and development, but more importantly, it is a catalyst for innovation and our vibrant culture"
The Hackathon has been an amazing source of research and development, but more importantly, it is a catalyst for innovation and our vibrant culture. The participants at each Hackathon form a unique bond that continues to flourish well beyond the energy-filled 24 hours. Hackers wear their event shirts like badges of valor, proud to highlight their ability to “survive” the event. Not all of the hackathon projects make their way into the product (some such as PRPC and the Internet of Things become an inspiration for future work). However, others, such as a case explorer, a faster tracer, or better developer tools become immediate features in the Pega product. The Hackathon is not only a fun experience for Pega employees, it is a great opportunity to explore the depths of what Pega 7 is capable of.