Silicon Chef is a women-centric hardware hackathon for humans who identify as female coming up this September 27-28, 2014 in San Francisco’s Mission district.
This is Hackbright Academy‘s annual hardware hackathon – come and build something awesome! Beginners are welcome!
Silicon Chef is “Iron Chef” for hardware hackers! Each team will receive a hardware box to hack on which includes a SparkFun Inventor’s Kit (ie. an Arduino, microcontrollers, LEDs and sensors, to keep – if you make something with it), and an Electric Imp dev kit.
We will have Mentors who’ve done this kind of thing before to help anyone who isn’t sure where to start, or isn’t sure how to finish. We are dedicated to providing a safe place for attendees to learn and make cool things! Register now as a HARDWARE HACKER or a MENTOR!
Beginners welcome to the women-centric hardware hackathon September 27-28, 2014 in San Francisco:
WHO SHOULD COME?
SILICON CHEF 2014 HARDWARE HACKATHON SCHEDULE
— Saturday, September 27th —
Noon — Lunch
12:45pm — Welcome, Registration & Logistics! by Meggie Mahnken, Hackbright Software Engineer
1:00pm — Tech Talk: “A brief but fun history of hardware!” by Julia Grace, Tindie Head of Engineering
1:20pm — Sponsor Remarks — Sukrutha Raman Bhadouria, Salesforce Senior Member of Technical Staff
1:30pm — Tech Talk: “What’s In The Box!” by Nick Avgerinos, Hackbright Academy Instructor
2:00pm — Hackathon Starts – Teams receive hardware boxes!
8:00pm — GO HOME!
11:00am — Hack!
Noon — lunch
1:00pm — Tech Talk: “The Hardware Fun Continues!” by Elecia White, Author of O’Reilly’s Making Embedded Systems
1:30pm — Hack!
5:00pm — Presentations & Prizes
7:00pm — GO HOME!
SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR PLATINUM SPONSOR:
SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR GOLD SPONSOR:
THANKS TO OUR SILVER SPONSORS:
SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR HARDWARE SPONSORS:
AND THANK YOU TO OUR PRIZE SPONSORS:
BECOME A SPONSOR!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I get a hardware box to hack on?
- To get a box, you must register here on Hackathon.io and join a team of 5-7 people. Please note that teams of 5-7 people will get ONE box. To register a new team, click the “projects” tab. Everyone on your team must be registered on Eventbrite. Mentors do not count towards your 5-7 people. At least 5 people on your team must be present at the event at the time we’re giving out boxes to receive a box. Supplies are limited, please arrive on time on Saturday morning!
Do you supply the hardware? What exactly is in the box?
Yes, we will be supplying the hardware. Each team on Hackathon.io will receive a hardware box guaranteed to have an Arduino and an Electric Imp dev kit. It is recommended that you bring a laptop and your enthusiasm.
What are the guidelines for prizes?
You’ll be handed a prize for just walking in the door with your team – a box of hardware to hack on! The point of this hackathon is not to win. It is to learn and make something that you are proud of with your team. There are some fun prizes (ie. “best team name”, “best hack”, “crowd favorite”).
How was Silicon Chef 2013?
Here’s what happened at last year’s Silicon Chef hackathon — MAKE magazine reported on the event, the Leap Motion team has a writeup by Melanie Warrick here, and we have a blog post of Silicon Chef 2013 pictures here. The event was thoroughly documented on social media / Facebook as well.
Who are the SPEAKERS?
SPEAKER: Julia Grace is Head of Engineering at Tindie, where she was the first employee and built the engineering team from the ground up. Prior to joining Tindie, Julia was CTO of WeddingLovely (a 500 Startups company), Product Manager at a mid-stage startup, VigLink, and a Research Engineer as part of one of the world’s top User Experience Research groups at IBM Almaden Research. Julia is on the board of the Computer History Museum in Mountain View and actively mentors early-career engineers. Follow her on Twitter at @jewelia.
SPEAKER: Sukrutha Raman Bhadouria is a Senior Member of Technical Staff at Salesforce. She is a frequent contributor to the Women in Tech blog at Salesforce. In her spare time, she serves as the Managing Director of Bay Area Girl Geek Dinners, hosting dozens of sold-out networking events for women in technology. Dinners are sponsored and hosted by companies including Google, Facebook, Pandora, Indiegogo and more. Sukrutha holds a M.S. in Electrical Engineering from USC. Follow her on Twitter at @sukruthasays.
SPEAKER: Nick Avgerinos is an instructor at Hackbright Academy. His technical career spans companies of many shapes and sizes, from small startups building satellite-based vehicle tracking systems, WiFi access management and VoIP to large companies like Adobe. More recently, he was Director of Engineering at gaming company KIXEYE. When his girlfriend attended Hackbright’s second session, he immediately saw something special and wanted to get more involved, and is now teaching at Hackbright full-time! Follow him on Twitter at @gambel.
SPEAKER: Elecia White is the author of O’Reilly’s Making Embedded Systems, host of the Embedded.fm podcast, and co-founder of Logical Elegance, an embedded software consulting firm. She has worked on DNA scanners, inertial measurement units for airplanes and race cars, children’s toys, a gunshot location system, wearables, and other interesting consumer and medical devices. Follow her on Twitter at @logicalelegance.
Who are the MENTORS?
We will have many MENTORS — these are people with backgrounds with hardware who want to help!
MENTOR: Ahdil Hameed is a third year UC Berkeley student studying Applied Mathematics and Computer Science. Ahdil has hardware experience including bread boards, soldering and setting up mini circuits. He is now an upcoming software developer trying to improve his skills and help develop software through hackathons, projects and various internship and work opportunities.
Ahdil will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Alex Glowaski is a Resident Maker at Pinoccio, an easy Arduino-compatible kit for building your own Internet of Things. She is a hardware-focused maker, blogger, and former Artist in Residence at Instructables. An alumna of the all-girl FIRST Team 677, she focuses on small robots, wearable tech, music, and EEG hacking. Alex is bringing a limited number of Pinoccio Scouts to lend out during Silicon Chef hackathon! Follow her on Twitter at @glowascii.
Alex will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (2pm-6pm) and Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Ayori Selassie is a Senior Software Engineer at salesforce.com, where she has also held roles in Product Management, Business Analysis, and Technical Engineering. Prior to salesforce.com, Ayori held engineering roles at large global outfits such as ABB Inc and Schneider Electric. Ayori is an Oakland, California native, a mother, entrepreneur and tech professional. She is a self taught software developer since age 11 and first founder at age 16. Follow her on Twitter at @iayori.
Ayori will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Brent McCullough is VP of Technology at RedAwning, a startup where he connects travelers with thousands of great vacation rental properties using lots of APIs, AWS, and more PHP than he would like. Brent got his start in embedded systems and medical devices and is skilled with C, microcontrollers, and real-time OS’s. He has interfaced with a myriad of sensors, and actuators including motors, lamps, high power LEDs, accelerometers, photodiodes, and thermoelectrics, among others and the analog circuits needed to capture data from them. A master solderer, Brent can solder just about anything that can be soldered by hand and some things that probably shouldn’t be soldered by hand. He is also skilled with control theory, medical sensors, imaging, serial buses, and low-power wireless. Follow him on Twitter at @BrentMcCullough.
Brent will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Carol Hsin is an Engineer at Plethora, a rapid manufacturing service. She did theoretical physics research on cosmic strings at Columbia University before attending Yale University to study environmental engineering. Her interests lie in engineering, energy, environment, air pollution, and US-China collaboration in Beijing. Follow her on Twitter at @CarolHsin.
Carol will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Celia Oakley is a consultant at a stealth startup. In the past, she has built robots, written web applications, published open-source software, designed a house, programmed an iPhone application, managed the installation of a sewer line, built a 24-foot wooden half-pipe, and designed hydraulics to make a bed stand up. Celia was a member of the Stanford Racing Team, which created Stanley, the self-driving vehicle that won the DARPA Grand Challenge. Celia holds a BS in ME from UC Berkeley, and an MS and PhD in ME (with a PhD minor in CS) from Stanford University.
Celia will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Christine Matheney is a Developer Evangelist at Microsoft, where she helps developers build awesome things. She just finished up a project where she programmed a drone to play hide and go seek with a Sphero robot. She has experience with Arduino and hardware design. Follow her on Twitter at @Matheneyc.
Christine will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Chuck Yin is a Hardware Manufacturing Lead at Square, a mobile payments startup in San Francisco. Prior to Square, he worked at Apple as a Senior Instrumentation Engineer and Qualcomm as a Research Scientist. Prior to that, he was a Senior Mechanical Engineer at CoAdna and a Senior Optics Engineer at MicroDisplay. Follow him on Twitter at @Yin_Chuck.
Chuck will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Dot Silverman is a Maker and member of the design team at Instructables, which hosts a website specializing in user-created and uploaded do-it-yourself projects. At Instructables, she designs and builds electronics projects for the website. In the past, she has worked with Jet Propulsion Laboratory and City of Hope Hospital. Dot holds a BA in physics from Pomona College and gets overly excited about anything at the intersection of science, math, and technology.
Dot will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Fadi Mahmoud is a founder of a new startup which is currently working on new products in Wearable quantified self focusing on innovative first to market fitness solutions using unique and common sensors. In addition to designing more than 17 successful products and solutions in storage, embedded, web, mobile, Fadi was also one of the main system designer for the first RAID on Motherboard for major OEM (Dell). He successfully turned many ideas into shipped products at Adaptec, Dell, Microsoft, and other companies.
Fadi will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (2pm-6pm) and Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Gino Miglio is an engineer at Electric Imp who spends his days making nifty demos and helping people build their own internet-of-things products. Gino is super excited to help you make cool things with Electric Imp, so feel free to flag him down if you have any questions!
Gino will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Jean Rintoul is a Biosignals Researcher at Ibis Biofeedback. She is interested in the applications of engineering to biological organisms, namely biometric self-tracking, Emotiv brain computer interfaces, machine learning algorithms, neurofeedback and brain training games like Neuroracer. She works at the intersection of technology/biological life and neuroscience for a better world. Her hardware hacking knowledge is around biomedical engineering (ie. heart rate, GSR, steps, accelerometers; interfacing with these in any way).
Jean will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday morning (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Jinal Dalal is a Product Manager at Google, where he works in the Google Maps Team. Before product management, Jinal was Technical Lead for Google Storage Hardware Infrastructure where he has experience building hardware using processors, controllers and sensors. He also has experience working with Arduino and Spark. Follow him on G+.
Jinal will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Jonathan Harris is a Research and Development Engineer at Vu1, a small startup company developing a state of the art lighting technology. Jon studied Electrical Engineering at UC Davis and has built successful projects in a number of fields including medical field and automotive. With an emphasis on analog circuit design and control systems, Jon first started using the Arduino microcontroller in 2012 for automated testing systems.
Jonathan H. will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Jonathan Stults is an Automation Engineer at Plethora, where he is currently working on machine and system automation. Jonathan is a mathematician and software engineer. Prior to joining Plethora, he was employed by the Department of Defense as an applied research mathematician. His experience includes GPU programming, signals processing, and mathematical applications. He has also worked with vertical CNC milling machines, as well as Beaglebone and Arduino boards for various control applications.
Jonathan S. will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (10am-2pm) and Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Justin Alvey is CTO and chief hardware hacker at Birdi, the smart smoke detector. Justin is an electrical engineer and industrial designer by training. He’s worked on building Electric cars, to low-cost renewable energy systems in Africa, to making Red Dot Award baby spoons for the NY MOMA Design store. Justin helps shape ideas and bring them to life through prototyping hacks while advising on designing for manufacture.
Justin will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Juan Carlos Asensio is a Research Developer at EdTech Guatemala. His main areas of expertise are business model engineering and social entrepreneurship. He is currently building a social enterprise based on Keepod technology. Juan has worked with several tech companies and science labs to help them tweak hardware products and making them relevant, user-friendly, attractive and useful for a specific target market. Juan understands human behavior and lovse to help engineers make great products at the intersection of humanities and technology. Businesses are about markets, not products.
Juan will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday and on Sunday (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Kaki Flynn is working with OpenExplorer.com, started by OpenROV founder Eric Stackpole, to revolutionize the world of ocean exploration and beyond by providing Remote Operated Vehicles to the Maker Space. Kaki, whose background includes building websites for sports in the US Olympic Committee family as well as training contracts with HP and Gateway Computers, is also an Outward Bound instructor. She brings team building and leadership skills as well as a deep faith in duct-tape. Follow her on Twitter at @KakiFlynn.
Kaki will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (10am-2pm) and Sunday (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Karen Robinson is an Electrical Engineer and Founder at Get the Quill. She has experience designing battery systems and power systems, for server power supplies, underwater robots, and thin-film manufacturing equipment. When she gets the chance, Karen enjoys machining metal using both subtractive tools such as the drillpress and lathe and additive processes such as welding. She presently works with a team in Google’s Advanced Technology & Projects group and will be jetlagged on Saturday from a recent trip to China. Follow her on Twitter at @kerobinso.
Karen will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Kate Jenkins is a Software Engineer at Ejenta, an AI startup in San Francisco where she is doing sensor integration and data visualization using the D3.js she learned at Hack Reactor. She went to MIT in materials science and eventually got her PhD working with new materials for hard disk drives and high performance computing. At her most recent hackathon, she was on a team that flew a model helicopter using a Tessel and she is excited to see what everyone builds at Silicon Chef! Follow her on Twitter at @katemonkeys.
Kate will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Laura Kassovic is CEO and Co-Founder of MbientLab, an engineering design firm responsible for building the hardware for companies coming out of Orange, YCombinator, and Techstars. Automated systems, beacons, wearables, and more. She will be bringing some MetaWear boards (Bluetooth ARM sensor boards) for Silicon Chef attendees to write iOS or Android apps to control. Follow her on Twitter at @LauraKassovic.
Laura will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Mark Pauley is a Lead iOS Developer at Anki, a startup bringing artificial intelligence and robotics into everyday lives. Mark specializes in robotics, wireless communications (like Bluetooth and Bluetooth LE) and mobile development (iOS and Android) and network communications (like TCP/IP). He has using Arduino’s for a long time, and helped build this crazy thing with an Arduino – watch this Pyrosphere video on YouTube. Follow him on Twitter at @unsaturated.
Mark will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Melanie Warrick is a Data Scientist at Change.org. She is a graduate of Zipfian Academy for data science and machine learning, and Hackbright Academy for software engineering. She was on the winning LeapRobo Microprocessor Robot team last year at Silicon Chef, where she coded the Python script to capture hand motions through Leap and passed the responses through USB serial port files that were interpreted by the C program, coded on the Arduino. Follow her on Twitter at @nyghtowl.
Melanie will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Mercedes Coyle is a Data Infrastructure Engineer at Ulive, where she helps keep the data flowing in a realtime analytics system that indexes 50 million events daily. She got started programming when inspired to create an illuminated dress using a Lilypad, and has continued hacking on Arduinos in her spare time. Mercedes is a Hackbright Academy alumna and mentor. Follow her on Twitter at @benzobot.
Mercedes will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday and Sunday morning (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Nick Audo is a Software Engineer and Instructor at Hackbright Academy. He hails from the Pacific Northwest and has been passionate about software development for as long as he can remember. After mentoring for several sessions at Hackbright Academy, Nick was excited to take the skills he learned in the field and share them with the students of Hackbright Academy. He was a mentor at Silicon Chef in 2013 as well. Follow him on Twitter at @NAudo.
Nick A. will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Nick Lupien is a Pest Crop Advisor at Lyman Ag Group, working in Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino and Lake counties. He consults vineyard operations on pesticides and fertilizers. Nick is interested in remote sensors for agriculture and has experience with Arduino hardware.
Nick L. will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 both days, Saturday and Sunday!
MENTOR: Nick Pinkston is Founder of Plethora, a rapid manufacturing service. Previously, Nick started CloudFab, the first manufacturing-as-a-service API, and HackPittsburgh. In San Francisco, Nick organizes the Hardware Startup Meetup. He is a hardware generalist with knowledge of MechE/CAD/Manufacturing, Arduino’s, basic circuit design, robotics / sensors and more. Follow him on Twitter at @NickPinkston.
Nick P. will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Sunday!
MENTOR: Owen Smithyman makes projects, tutorials, and documentation for the Othermill, an ultra-precise desktop CNC mill. He loves electronics, building things with his hands, and collaboration. He has a wide range of interests that encompass electronics, a cappella singing, winemaking, and psychology. He is very enthusiastic about basically everything, and will be bringing an Othermill.
Owen will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Peiyao Zhang is an Electrical Engineer at Proteus Digital Health, a digital medicine startup in Redwood City. Prior to Proteus, she was an electrical engineer designing automation machinery to make baby wipes at Kimberly Clark in Atlanta, Georgia. She also has considerable hardware knowledge from the various medical device companies she has worked at in the past and can help with project scope, design feasibility and optimization.
Peiyao will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Rachel Allen is a Design, Technology and Hardware Campaign Specialist at Indiegogo. She works directly with campaign owners to offer strategy feedback and provide educational resources. Prior to Indiegogo, Rachel researched Internet policy and broadband competition as a Google Policy Fellow, consulted on social media strategy for The National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture, and taught undergraduate courses in communications history and media criticism at UC Santa Barbara. Follow her on Twitter at @therja.
Rachel will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday afternoon (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Rauhmel Fox is the CEO of WHOmentor, a scientific research organization and an H-1B exempt employer, leads a coterie of executive trainees to inquire into any subject or occupation that evokes their intellectual concern while constantly deriving independent economic value. He is executive producer of Objective-S/he, a documentary on women in tech and gender neutrality. Rauhmel will come with several hardware devices and kits: Leap Motions, SEEED Grove, Intel Galileo, Spark Core, and Tessel microcontroller with modules. Follow him on Twitter at @RauhmelFoxCEO.
Rauhmel will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (10am-2pm) and Sunday (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Simone Davalos is the Project and Tech Support engineer at Other Machine Co. She enjoys taking things apart to see how they work and then teaching people how to do the same thing, only better. She will be brignging an Othermill and showing people how to hack with them! Follow her on Twitter at @MissySB.
Simone will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
MENTOR: Tom Byrne is an Engineer at Electric Imp, where he designs internet-connected devices. Tom is an Electrical Engineer, and is happiest working at the intersection of hardware and software. Tom is the person to ask if you want help getting started with the Electric Imp dev kit that will be included in your team’s hardware box. Follow him on Twitter at @tlbyrn.
Tom will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 all day Saturday!
MENTOR: Tony Chen is a co-founder of Pantry, who makes a an RFID-enabled, Android-based smart kiosk that allows cafeteria and cafe managers to sell their fresh food unattended. He put together the first prototype of Pantry kiosk with several Arduino boards and sensors. Prior to Pantry, Tony worked across software and hardware teams at Ericsson, Qualcomm, Intel, and several other tech companies. He is passionate about bridging the gap between software and hardware.
Tony will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Sunday (10am-2pm)!
MENTOR: Yann Ly-Gagnon is a Wireless Engineer at Qualcomm. For the last 12 years, he’s been an Electrical Engineer for startups to big established companies. Currently he’s at Qualcomm Atheros, designing the cool Bluetooth and WLAN chipsets that we all use. His main expertise is in algorithms (speech processing/recognition, wireless systems/ modem design and machine learning). He can also help with iOS, Angular and Ruby on Rails, since he was an indie dev for an app available on app store (Yumget). He will bring a spark core. Follow him on Twitter at @yannlygagnon.
Yann will be mentoring at Silicon Chef 2014 on Saturday (2pm-6pm) and Sunday (2pm-6pm)!
Who are the hackathon judges?
JUDGE: Carolyn Grabill is a senior software engineer at Salesforce.com. She works on customization tools for database schema and globalization, and holds a patent for her work on the Salesforce Schema Builder. Carolyn supports women in technology through salesforce.com’s WIT outreach program and volunteers to teach kids how to code. She holds a BA in Computer Science from Vassar College, plays a lot of video games, loves to cross stitch cartoon characters, and tweets under @CarolynCodes. Follow her on Twitter at @CarolynCodes.
JUDGE: Dot Silverman is a Maker and member of the design team at Instructables, which hosts a website specializing in user-created and uploaded do-it-yourself projects. At Instructables, she designs and builds electronics projects for the website. In the past, she has worked with Jet Propulsion Laboratory and City of Hope Hospital. Dot holds a BA in physics from Pomona College and gets overly excited about anything at the intersection of science, math, and technology. In addition to tinkering with electronics and programming, Dot loves running, crocheting, and traditional West African dance.
JUDGE: Kat Li works on community development at Stripe, a suite of APIs that powers commerce for businesses of all sizes. Prior to Stripe, she worked on product marketing and partnerships at Quora. Kat studied linguistics and psychology at Stanford University and loves bad puns. Follow her on Twitter at @kitchenettekat.
JUDGE: Minoo Ayat is a Talent Acquisition leader who has been on the hunt for tech talents
in Silicon Valley over the last 12 years working for Fortune 100 companies such as Yahoo! and
Amazon. As a Talent Acquisition leader, she enjoys solving hiring complexities while partnering with technology leaders to build top tier engineering teams. Minoo has been an advocate for diversity and woman empowerment by coaching, mentoring and supporting women empowerment causes in the tech world. Her philosophy is such that our society should consciously push for policies that encourage women excelling in their career while supporting their family.
JUDGE: Pamela Fox is a curriculum developer at Khan Academy, where she works to improve the computer science curriculum. She was born to a duo of computer scientists who told her that she could learn programming without their help, thanks to the internet! On the side, Pamela teaches web development workshops for Girl Develop It and writes programs to figure out her next hair colors. Before Khan Academy, she worked at Coursera as a software engineer and Google as a developer evangelist. Follow her on Twitter at @pamelafox.
Is there a hackathon code of conduct?
We reserve the right to remove anyone from the event if they do not follow the code of conduct!