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CitSci Association Conference 2017 - Hack Days & ThinkCamps for Citizen Science

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Many modern day citizen science projects are powered by mobile and web technologies, which enable ordinary citizens around the globe to take part in science research, and open up many fields of science to the participation of volunteers for the first time.

These same underlying technologies also provide a unique opportunity for the co-creation of new tools, and the creative application of existing citizen science platforms.

One way to harness this is through 'creative collaboration' events such as Hack Days, Code Sprints and ThinkCamps. Ever since the Hackathon and Hack Day event formats were first invented in the early 2000's the number and range of these 'un-conference' events have continued to grow in popularity as a creative outlet for developers and 'makers', and a way to enhance software & platform development while engaging with a wider community of participants externally.

These events have long since expanded beyond their initial software developer orientation and for the past decade have alsobeen applied to an increasingly wide range of subjects -such as Science.

In this talk I will outline the unique properties of a range of creative collaboration event formats and describe how can they be used as a tool to achieve outcomes such as increased engagement and innovation.

I will also share lessons learned in running the first Citizen Science Hack Days at the London Citizen Cyberscience Summits and ECSA2016, and make recommendations for future event organisers, Citizen Science project owners, and policy makers.

Published in: Science
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CitSci Association Conference 2017 - Hack Days & ThinkCamps for Citizen Science

  1. 1. Hack Days & Think Camps
  2. 2. Hack Days / Hackathons
  3. 3. •8 years of events •3,000+ community •600+ attendees •36 hours of mobile development •50 workshops •1 overnight Hack Day
  4. 4. http://gilbertsinnott.com/nhm/
  5. 5. Science Hack Day
  6. 6. MozFest Open Science Track
  7. 7. https://public.etherpad- mozilla.org/p/IOTforSchools_Mozfest_2015
  8. 8. Game Jams
  9. 9. GameJams – Get a picture of Redwire GameJam • Imperative Procedure -> Reusable Building Block • Aka first order functions, scripting, macros • Many examples in science and arts. – Music: tracks – Biology: Synthetic biology tools: biobots, gene databases, etc. – Physics: Gauss->Tensors, Rivet (CERN): publish, run, reuse tunings • Share solutions. • Increase intelligent behaviour across users. • Unstable but extremely powerful.
  10. 10. REDWIRE
  11. 11. ThinkCamps
  12. 12. …the basics…
  13. 13. @MobileMaggie

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