Attendee Information


Getting to Hack UCSC

The location of Hack UCSC is at Porter Dining Hall at University of California, Santa Cruz (Google Maps linked here). You can start lining up for registration before 8:30 pm on Friday, Jan 20. 

Parking at Hack UCSC

If you need parking for Hack UCSC, you should have received a general email on Sunday, Jan 15 that included parking details. If you have not received this email, please email right away. 

Taking the Public Bus to Hack UCSC

If you are planning to take the Santa Cruz Metro bus to Hack UCSC (Please visit the Santa Cruz Metro site for fare information), take the buses that are numbered 10, 15, 16, 19 or 20 from the Santa Cruz Metro Station (Schedule linked here). You will get off the stop for UCSC - Rachel Carson College & Porter. Walk up the hill opposite of the Rachel Carson College sign and follow the path. Turn left at the koi pond and up the stairs is Porter Dining Hall. 

What to Bring to Hack UCSC?

You MUST bring a photo ID (school ID, driver's license, passport etc) to the Hack UCSC registration in order to receive your Hack UCSC badge. This badge will be used to get food, enter workshops etc.

Other recommended items to bring:

  • Your own laptop/charger
  • Sleeping bag and/or pillows/blankets
  • Umbrella/Raincoat (As it may rain that weekend)
  • Headphones (For when you need to concentrate on hacking)
  • Notepads and pens (or even a whiteboard-for brainstorming!)
  • A big backpack to keep all your things together
  • Toiletries such as toothbrush/toothpaste and deodorant
  • A water bottle and small snacks (Food/drinks will be provided at event.)

Event Map


What's Being Offered at Hack UCSC?


Hack Categories & Prizes

Hack UCSC has a number of categories that individuals and teams can submit their hack for. There are two main categories, Innovation and Tech Cares which you can submit your hack for one or the other. There are also many sponsor categories that have various prizes that you can submit your hack to if they fulfill the requirements of the category. Reference below to see rules for teams and hack submissions. 


Workshops & Talks

Hack UCSC are offering workshops from 9 am to 6 pm on Saturday, Jan 21. At these workshops, you'll get the opportunity to learn about different parts of the tech industry from current professionals, learn a new skill or be able to get industry advice for your own projects.

From talking about how Pokemon Go was built to getting app advice from an Apple engineer who worked on the original iPad, Hack UCSC has a plethora of workshops that is sure to excite you!

Hack UCSC Rules

Hack UCSC Submission Rules

  • If any hack submission breaks any of the following rules, they will be immediately disqualified from judging. 
  • All hacks submitted for judging cannot have started coding before 11:59 pm on Jan 20, Friday. Pseudo-code is ok. Actual code is not. 
  • All hacks submitted for judging cannot have code comitted after 12:01 pm on Jan 22, Sunday.
  • Any hardware submission is allowed to be pre-built before the hackathon but the main coding aspect of the hack MUST be accomplished at the hackathon.
  • All hacks submitted for judging must be appropriate for public display and cannot be purposely created for malicious/illegal intentions. 
  • All hacks that wished to be judged for a category must be submitted to the Hack UCSC 2017 Devpost (See below)

Hack UCSC Team Rules

  • Maximum 5 people per team.
  • All team members must be Hack UCSC attendees.
  • All team members must currently be students in an educational institution (high school or college).
  • All team members must be 18 or older during Hack UCSC.
  • Mentors are NOT allowed to join teams, only offer advice. 
  • All team members must follow and agree to the MLH Code of Conduct and Hack UCSC's Terms and Conditions.

Hack UCSC Schedule


January 20, 2017

  • 8pm - Sponsor Setup. Special parking permits will be provided.
  • 8:30pm - Doors Open. Registration for all participants. Dinner will be provided.
  • 10:00pm - Opening Ceremonies

January 21, 2017

  • 12am -  HACK!
  • 8am - Breakfast
  • 10am - Devpost submission creation ** EXTENDED TILL 3 PM
  • 12pm - Lunch
  • 6pm - Devpost submission for categories due
  • 8pm - Dinner

January 22, 2017

  • 8am - Breakfast
  • 12pm - Code Freeze, Lunch
  • 1pm - Round 1 Judging
  • 2:30pm - Guest Speaker
  • 3pm - Round 2 Judging
  • 4:30pm - Closing Speakers, Winners Announced
  • 5:30pm - Awards Ceremony


What do I do at the hackathon?

Build anything you want. Literally anything! (as long as it doesn't break the team or submission rules listed above) Take this opportunity to go beyond the classroom assignments, grades and testing and just do that One Thing you've always wanted to do. Want to finally figure out the what you can do with the Google App Engine?  Open up a tutorial and get cracking.  Want to build a GPS tracker for your cat, Coco because she always gets into the weirdest of places? Go ahead. Saw a hack category that caught your eye? Take a look at the requirements and brainstorm some ideas to build around the category. Of course, if you decide building something isn't just working out, there will be plenty of mentors from the industry coming in that you can talk to about anything you want as well as all the workshops happening on Saturday. The only requirement for this hackathon is to enjoy yourself!

I don't know what to build/hack!

Here You Go. ~(‾⌣‾~)

I want to learn something new but I don't know what.

How about something awesome?  ;)

This is my first hackathon! I'm terrified!

Take a deep breath and relax. You'll probably be a little overwhelmed on the first day and that's fine! Take a look here and here for some first-timer hackathon advice. Everyone needs to start somewhere but just to let you know, we are glad you started with us :)

If you have an emergency during the duration of the hackathon, please call either Zimraan (904-891-4876) or Anjali (510-541-7012). Any non-emergency issues or questions can be directed to