- When the space would not let some people sleep on site as planned, James literally arranged an Uber and AirBnB for them. What a hero!
- Although it was hard to tell what was going on at any given time (an admitted downside), James overcame this by literally walking around and informing us constantly about what was next – the next presenters, food was here, etc. Maybe it actually worked better that way, because we all had had some quality facetime with him by the end (although the poor guy probably got sick to death of repeating himself!).
- All kinds of things didn’t work out as planned. Presenters dropped out or rearranged, judges had obligations elsewhere, and internet wasn’t what we hoped. Nevertheless, this was overcome by both James’ amazing powers of improvisation coupled with the supercalafragilistic-coolness of the Workbar space we were in, so fun was had by all.
For these reasons, during a debriefing where James solicited reactions, after the initial lovefest was over, it was hard to put forth even constructive criticism. This was because, it became clear, that James had somehow ended up with a ton of responsibilities, and when some things that needed to happen needed to happen (like finding crash space for those stranded guys), other things that weren’t as important got backburnered. Those other things included a lot of the topics ironically discussed at the hackathon: social media, getting information out there, being seen and interacted with by your customer, etc.
So here’s the solution to any criticisms of MassHack 2014: Let’s all volunteer to help James with MassHack 2015!