Announcing: The 2014 Hack’nShow at Gold Coast Science and Tech Fair

2014-Hack'nShow at GCSTF masthead
A celebration of creativity. We want to see lots of tech, from simple and small to …, from lots of people.

Why should the community become involved in this year’s Gold Coast Science and Tech Fair?
Gold Coast Science and Tech Fairs are the best opportunity for schools and the general public to come together at one event each year to engage in areas of common interest within science and technology. The event is organised by Study Gold Coast. This year, Gold Coast TechSpace is taking an expanded role in organising and exhibiting examples of “citizen tech” from its own members, local schools and the general public. Citizen tech is a recent phenomenon. Such factors as the advent of the internet, web2 and social media, open source software and hardware, the expiration of patents on 3D printing technologies, and the release of cheap open-source electronics development and prototyping platforms such as Arduinos, have combined in recent years to allow any person to take the initiative to create items of technology themselves. The range of tech that citizens can create and modify (thus hack) themselves is huge, from tiny items to large robots, from simple personal items to networks of complex tech that crawl, walk, fly and interact across the globe. There is an abundance of free sources of information available on the internet. The possibilities are largely limited by an individual’s imagination, initiative, drive, and enthusiasm.

What is the Hack’nShow(TM) competition about?
Gold Coast TechSpace has trademarked Hack’nShow for any group to use gratis as a name for any event where citizens can bring examples of items they have created and exhibit them at an event. The “Hack” component implies that the creation of a piece of tech might involve someone taking other existing tech apart, learning how it works, and reusing parts to create new tech. This is the original and positive meaning of the term “hack”. It implies a lawful and creative activity within the community, not an illegal nor destructive one. The Hack’nShow event at the 2014 Gold Coast Science and Tech Fair is the inaugural Hack’nShow event, and we encourage the free use of the name globally by other non-profit associations and groups wishing to hold similar events.

How can the community become involved in this year’s TechSpace marquee?
Gold Coast TechSpace invite the public to visit us in our marquee on Saturday 16th August at the 2014 Gold Coast Science and Tech Fair at Broadwater Parklands, Marine Parade, Southport, bringing in and showing us the the public any tech that they have created, or just to view what others are doing and showing. TechSpace members will be on hand to help explain the tech, and to help anyone thinking about starting to convert/hack their own ideas into reality.

  • In addition, on the Friday we will present 30 minute tech demos and talks to Gold Coast year 10 high school students between noon and 2pm. These students can also enter the Hack’nShow, and will have the opportunity to briefly present their tech onstage.
  • On Saturday we will exhibit TechSpace tech, and also, under the banner of Hack’nShow, we will exhibit tech that has been created/hacked together by school students and the general public. In addition, the City of Gold Coast has supported Hack’nShow with funding for prizes [More: details of prize categories and registration].

Student and public exhibitors must register during July. They will be included into an email list where they can converse with other exhibitors and some TechSpace members. This will be useful to exhibitors and TechSpace members alike, especially for those that are less confident in developing or showing people their tech as we can help them out in both cases.

Who should be attending this year’s event?
Anyone who is in any way interested in science or technology is encouraged to drop in, view what tech is on display, talk to Gold Coast TechSpace members and exhibitors, and hopefully become interested in creating and hacking technology themselves.

Please pass this news on to everyone that might be interested.
Enquiries: hacknshow@gctechspace.org

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