AngelHack: Hacking My Life

AngelHack is not just any other opportunity. I am not writing this to get featured but this has been an amazing journey for me right after my graduation to meet some kick ass people here in Hyderabad itself. I was running a website which showcased events and my colleague who knew Kamrin, Community Manager at AngelHack suggested me to organize AngelHack Hyderabad. Diana, VP of Operations does a call with me to understand if I am the best fit for the position and if it is good to have me on board along with others. Excitement filled in me as I knew nothing of what AngelHack was and how it was going to happen. Honestly, I was a noob with all these things related to running a hackathon and coordinating things. Initial stages seemed simple as I got through and I also got to know that there are already two guys from Hyderabad who are working to do AngelHack here in Hyderabad. Then I get introducted to them and here is how the journey began.

Ratish and Vishnu are the two of my team mates, whom I didn’t even know until we all met at SkyPark Cafe, our common spot even till now where Ratish pays for whatever we all eat together. Ratish is this big man who looks serious but is always cool and chilled out. Vishnu is the typical south indian who works for Infosys but loves organizing AngelHack, mind you only AngelHack. I am this recent graduate kid on board who nothing but knows how to run social media well and do things when needed all of which I discovered only because of AngelHack. Otherwise, I would be someone who just goes to office everyday and back home, nothing more important in life. I learned to work together and in fact we 3 came together as a team and kicked off one of the best AngelHack hackathons ever through out the world here in Hyderabad on November 9-10, 2013.

Kamrin, the community manager was supposed to help us with the hackathon at Hyderabad as it is very first time for all of us and all she tells us in front of all the developers that it was our hackathon and our city and we should do it all by ourselves. Now what do we do? First, we introduce her and pass on the mike to her and try to escape from the reality that she will anyways take care of it. But NO! She doesn’t. She introduces herself and us to the whole audience and passes on the mike to me. Now comes my turn to talk, and I have no clue even till date what came into me. What made me get on to the stage and host the hackathon for the next 24 hours or even more. I try to still figure out the same but I politely answer people that I discovered myself at AngelHack which is nevertheless the truth. We all get this presentation dock well ahead of the hackathon which needs to be edited based on the city and I do it during the morning time of the hackathon and I have no clue what each of the slides meant but I explained everything to the audience without me having prior knowledge of what they meant actually. Everything was correct for my realization which saved my ass.

All three of us knew was only to make this hackathon as cool as possible and give the best experience to everyone who was at the hackathon. There will always be hurdles which you have to face and people will be disappointed. I learned how to still keep my calm and smile at whatever I do, because you should be angry of anything because its because of you. Now Ratish has kick ass contacts and he manages to bring in the best food for the hackathon that the attendees of other events in the venue come down to your food area and have it without you not noticing it. And he was also responsible for some midnight Red Bull which is what every developer loves to have and also at the right time. AngelHack Hyderabad Fall 2013 was one of the best experiences ever. Today, whomever I talk to or who ever is my friend in this startup community is some way related to AngelHack itself. Vishnu on the other hand was a great help to the attendees and also one best mentor we had because he was a designer by profession and also an Android developer. We 3 worked together so well that we had to make it a success. Having less tshirts was a disappointment for the participants but you know things like that happen and they happen for a reason that you don’t repeat them again when you are doing such an event.

Some Amazing Surprises:

1. RedBull girls coming during midnight to surprise all the hackers with RedBull

2. CupCakes – One of the best cup cakes ever for all the participants specially made arrive during mid night, thanks to Ratish for this one again from SkyPark.

3. 170+ hackers and you only have about 100 tshirts. You are in deep shit. To those who didn’t get the tshirts, forgive us.

4. Microsoft allows the participants to play around with the games which strictly is out of their rules.

With such enthusiasm and meeting over 150 kick ass students and developers under one roof with unlimited refreshments from Microsoft, what else can you ask for at a hackathon? AngelHack ended with a good note last year and we are back again with some cool offerings to chill out in this hot summer here in Hyderabad again. AngelHack Spring 2014 edition in Hyderabad is the second in this season and we are looking forward to meeting many new developers, ideators and more. Are you coming? Oh you have to!

Thanks for the amazing love and support for the whole AngelHack team and special thanks to my counterparts here at Hyderabad Ratish and Vishnu for bearing me till now and for the future as well. We came in this together and we will be in this together forever! Yo!!

Here are some perks which you should know now: Some guys here in Hyderabad call me ‘a hackathon expert’. Oh well, I didn’t know that I was so good at it. Its always been learning to me and it will be. I have organized more than 10 events in this city already including 3 big hackathons :O. For the record, I just attended one hackathon even after which I never knew what a hackathon was supposed to be but today I am organizing them. #LOL

Harish Kotra

5 thoughts on “AngelHack: Hacking My Life

  1. Wonderful summation of Angelhack last hackathon Harish, I hope this time it leaves different experience which will be remembered until the next.

  2. Oh,that was awesome. Hope so there will be more surprises on May 10&11. Much excited to be in the team.

  3. Wow! What an incredible journey this has been.
    Kudos to you for stepping out of your comfort zone and entering these uncharted waters with ease.
    You inspire me, Harish! Keep up the great work.

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