The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019 - 30

Chapter News

CHAPTER BEST PRACTICE: BOOSTING MEMBERSHIP AND EXCITEMENT

H.A.R.D. Hack: Hash out. Analyze. Research. Design.
Keshav Rungta, Kappa Psi Chapter '18

Every year, Kappa Psi, the HKN chapter at the
University of California, San Diego, helps put on
H.A.R.D. Hack, a 24-hour hardware-centric hackathon
for nearly 200 students at the Jacobs School of
Engineering. This event is very special in the UCSD
community because it provides an environment not
only for students to code, but also to be able to get
hands-on with hardware, building everything from
robotic cars to smart fridges and smart street lamps.
Teams come in groups of four to five students from
all different backgrounds to compete by building a
hardware project in 24 hours.

The Set Up:
H.A.R.D. Hack planning begins 6-8 months before
the event, with a core team of 7-10 committee
members built up from IEEE and HKN members and
officers. The first thing to do is finalize the time and
venue for the event. Weekly meetings are required
to keep up with the various tasks to organize a
successful event. The size of the event to aim for
will depending on your school size and how much
experience the committee has with planning large
events, but this was our 3rd time hosting the event,
and it has grown dramatically in the past few years to
incorporate nearly 200 students this year. Anything
larger than 200 students will be eligible to be hosted
in partnership with Major League Hacking (MLH), but
applications will need to be filled out to be eligible
for that.
Obtaining support and sponsorships for this event
are key to a successful event. Qualcomm loaned
many Dragonboard 410c for hacker use. Linaro
provided mentorship and workshops. Lab41
sponsored a database called VOiCES (Voices
Obscured in Complex Environmental Settings). Texas
Instruments sponsored many robotic kits. The IEEE
SCSS sponsored other hardware parts. Reaching out
to these companies and organizations helps add
diversity to the event.

Qualcomm hosted a Dragonboard 410c workshop before the hackathon to help students get oriented with the device.

Since H.A.R.D. Hack was a hardware hackathon,
we needed a way to manage parts. We set up
CHEQROOM to help keep track of which team had
which parts. We had many sensors, microcontrollers,
motors, wheels, cameras and more in our stash.
One note is to schedule at least one experienced
hardware EE person to help with parts distribution.

Food for the event came from many different
vendors. We had bagels for breakfast, pizza,
sandwiches, pastries, and midnight milk tea. We had
extra volunteers to help transport the food during
meal times.

Parts Distribution was fun chaos.
We had many volunteers help out with this!

This article discusses how the chapter helped carry
out the H.A.R.D Hack and how sponsoring this
friendly competition could serve as a "Best Practice"
for HKN chapters looking to engage more students
in an effective, fun way.

THE BRIDGE

Everyone hard at work on their projects! We had a soldering station, electrical engineering equipment, and project space facilities for hackers to use.

HKN.ORG

31


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The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019

Contents
The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019 - Cover1
The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019 - Cover2
The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019 - Contents
The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019 - 4
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The Bridge - Issue 3, 2019 - Cover3
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_issue2_2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_issue1_2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2020_issue3
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2020_issue2
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2020_issue1
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2019_issue3
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2019_issue2
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2019_issue1
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2018_issue3
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2018_issue2
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ieee/bridge_2018_issue1
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