Spring’s event (FYI, we hold another Hack Day in the summer with our engineering interns), while technically unthemed, asked participants to get back to basics. No fluff or frills; the focus was on just making something great.
Often the projects selected are ideas that live on the internal AppFolio Property Manager or MyCase “product wishlist” and sometimes they are completely out of the realm of our software. It allows product developers and software engineers to step out of their day-to-day comfort zone and look at things from a different angle. It’s an opportunity to stretch the creative muscles, so at the end of the day, everyone is motivated and energized to get back to work on making the best AppFolio and MyCase products they can.
What’s so cool about Hack Day? “With Hack Day, you have these 24 hours to come up with something, and it doesn’t have to be perfect,” says Sebastien Cuendet, director of software engineering for AppFolio Property Manager. “You get to work with different people who you usually don’t work with, and there’s a sense of mission – you want to finish before the deadline and you want to pack in maximum value.”
“I’m always impressed by all the projects that people come up with. It’s crazy what we come up with. It’s very encouraging.” – Sebastien Cuendet, Director, Software Engineering, AppFolio Property Manager
Logistically, there were over 25 presentations across the two offices and 8-10 winning products. While I can’t divulge many of them (you never know, they might make it into a future product release someday), I can say they ranged from chat messaging tools and translations to bug fixes and something called “Definitely Not a Vegetarian Salad” which was exactly what it sounds like.
Here are some photos from the day: