One of the challenges in organizing volunteers around building civic web applications is that there are a lot of people with a lot of different skills and many projects to choose from – particularly in Chicago.
Over the past few weeks, Derek Eder, Forest Gregg, Eric van Zanten and others have been building opengovhacknight.org to help aggragate information on civic innovation projects in Chicago. Now, with the addition of Hack Dash – it just became much easier for people to get involved in civic hacking!
Hack Dash is a platform originally born out of the problem of organizing ideas at hackathons. Originally built by Mariano Blejman and Dan Zajdband to help with the Media Party Hackathon, the team found that it was helping to fill a real need. here’s Mariano Blejman explaining the platform.
Combined with the project page at opengovhacknight.org, techies and non-techies alike can find and connect to projects that interest them. The page brings you to Chicago’s instance of Hack Dash.
Hack Dash will show you a list of projects that you can check out or you can create your own. You can import the information from GitHub or fill the information out manually.
Hack Dash lets you enter the name of the project, a description, links, subject tags, and even photos. From there, the project page will show whose managing the project, who the contributors are, and allows you to comment on the project.
The site is a great way for people to see what projects they can jump into or if they have project ideas to get them on the board. Since the site doesn’t require a GitHub login, it makes it easier for people who aren’t web developers to contribute and comment as well. (And that’s important)