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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Can Hackers Change the World?

Posted By on Wed, May 25, 2011 at 1:45 PM

click to enlarge changing the world, one hacker at a time
  • changing the world, one hacker at a time

We already know what harm hackers can cause. But what good can they do?

San Francisco's, a online activist platform, is challenging local hackers -- designers, coders, and programmers -- to put their talents to good use and build philanthropic apps meant to bring some positive change.

This "Hack for Change" contest will gather some of the Bay Area's brightest techies, put them into a room at's headquarters, and wait for 24 hours to see what cool apps they come up with that will help transform politics, government, and the nonprofit sector. The top three winners will get $10,000 in seed money.

"The San Francisco Bay Area is home to the world's top web designers and developers -- many of whom would like to use their skills for social change, but have not been asked," said Ben Rattray, founder of "Hack for Change is looking to tap into the tech community to help build apps that change lives."

Any developer or designer interested can register for the hackathon at The June 18 event will begin at noon with presentations from leading nonprofits and companies featuring data sets useful for building social change apps. And then contestants will have 24 hours to build a useful mobile or web application.

A panel of judges will then select the winning applications and award.

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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