Hackathon aims to improve voter experience in NYC

Earlier this year, I posted a blogentry discussing the role of the cloud in helping local governments manageand track their election activity.  An example of this is the workMicrosoft is currently doing with the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Voting Information Project (VIP). In 2008, VIP launched cutting-edge technology tools to provide access tocustomized election information to help voters cast a ballot.  Microsoftwas proud to join the project in 2011. VIP provides election information tovoters by allowing states to share official election information includingpolling locations, registration deadlines, and ballot information across bothweb and mobile platforms. Therefore, when Election Day is upon us, voters areprepared to make informed decisions and are able to get answers to questionssuch as “Where do I vote? What issues are on the ballot?  What do I needto bring with me to vote?”

Today I’m pleased to announce that Microsoft continues itspartnership with Pew and the VIP project as a sponsor of the first-ever NewYork City hackathonAugust 2nd and 3rd at AlleyNYCin midtown Manhattan. This event is reaching out to developers and designers inthe greater New York City area to help generate socially innovativeapplications that will improve the voting experience for the 2013 primary andgeneral elections, including the city’s mayoral race.

Microsoft and Pew encourage elections-interestedtechnologists to register for andjoin this hackathon.  The Friday evening event will include a presentationregarding usage of Microsoft provided APIs and platform, including WindowsAzure, and will also announce a prize for best usage of Microsoft technologies.On Saturday, Microsoft is sponsoring a pizza lunch for hackathonparticipants.  It promises to be fun for attendees, bringing togethercreative minds to share ideas, experiment and learn from one another, andencourage the development and design of innovative new tools to improve thevoter experience in New York City and beyond. 

Whether you canmake it or not on August 2-3, you can follow the action on Twitter @VotingInfo and shareyour thoughts using #VIPHackathon.


Andy Pitman
Microsoft eGovernment Solutions

About the Author

Andy Pitman | Microsoft eGovernment Solutions

Andy is focused on helping government customers improve the efficiency and quality of their technology. He works with customers and partners to develop innovations in areas such as information fusion centers, elections, records management, and more. Read More