Québec Ouvert appelle les Montréalais a hacker leur ville

Québec Ouvert 5054Publication de dernière minute. L'événement à lieu demain, le 23 février. Dans le cadre de la Journée internationale des données ouvertes 2013, l’organisme Québec Ouvert organise le 23 février prochain à la SAT une journée de discussion et de travail collaboratif sur les bases de données ouvertes de la ville de Montréal, du gouvernement du Québec et de gouvernements étrangers.  À cette occasion, plus de 170 citoyens, journalistes, développeurs et designers viendront créer des outils informatiques à partir de données ouvertes.  Plusieurs ateliers seront offerts simultanément et les projets réalisés seront dévoilés à la fin de la journée. Tout au long de l’évènement, des experts en données ouvertes seront sur place pour orienter les nouveaux.  L’événement est coorganisé par Nord Ouvert, un organisme sans but lucratif qui oeuvre à améliorer la démocratie au moyen de la technologie, et par les intiatives populaires Montréal Ouvert et Québec Ouvert, dont le mandat est d’organiser des   Read more…


echofab, mini makerfaire, foulab, robotics hackathon: hardware hacking on the rise

echofab, mini makerfaire, foulab, robotics hackathon: hardware hacking on the rise 4675The first hardware hacking space was foulab in Montreal, started a couple of years ago. Supported and run by its members, it allows anyone who likes to play with electronics, use heavy machinery, order or find exotic parts, and generally talk with similarly-minded hackers. Recently, foulab got also their own 3D printers. Since then, more events and organizations started developing: robotics hackathon recently, with about 100 young and old robotics fans learning board programming and robot assembling. In other parts of Montreal, we've seen also the fantastic initiative echofab, the first fablab space in the city. It's similar to Foulab, but with the mindset that it's about creative craftsmanship, and less about the underground and exclusive hacking attitude. Fablab is big on 3D printing, and making a community & friendly space available to citizens, almost as if it were a public library. Here's a good video that   Read more…


OpenIt4Africa helps launch techn projects for Africa

OpenIt4Africa helps launch techn projects for Africa 4645In exactly 2 weeks, a group of entrepreneurs and programmers will gather at OpenIt4Africa, an event aimed to help launch new innovative projects for Africa. In the past 10 years, there's been significant growth in many parts of Africa, with the continent experiencing the highest economic growth in the world, even beyond China and other Asian countries. The growth has been supported by the exploitation of natural resources, although it's mainly fuelled by the ingenuity of entrepreneurs and organizations who see immense needs and opportunities. Ghana, Kenya, Angola, South Africa and Senegal are such countries where new and innovative solutions have been built, with good examples of projects that are unique, such as Ushahidi, or mpesa. It's estimated for instance that a quarter of financial transactions in Kenya are done through mobile, numbers that are hard to imagine in Canada. Behaviours regarding mobile gaming, mobile communication, and   Read more…


Upcoming: HackMTL calls developers to play & hack on APIs

Upcoming: HackMTL calls developers to play & hack on APIs 4643HackMTL, a montreal version of hackdays, comes to Montreal next weekend. It's a full-day hackathon open to programmers and companies who want to use various APIs. The featured API is Yellow Pages's Yellow API, which has in its database hundreds of thousands of small businesses, as well as the associated addresses. There are other APIs as well, such as Context.io's API which lets you integrate easily email functionality in your application. Like Yellow API, it's not the first time that Context.io is engaging local developers, as they've been supporting past developer events. Other APIs are cakemail, wajam, plus other canadian startups such as TinEye or Freshbooks. As announced on the invitation page, you can win prizes for new applications, and of course, a good way to hone up your programming skills. It also allows startups and tech companies to get programmers using their services, in a friendly event. Register   Read more…


twtspire.com| idea for the next startup = One Tweet Away?

twtspire.com| idea for the next startup = One Tweet Away? 4533 Startups solve problems. So if you find a problem there's probably a startup idea lying somewhere nearby. A Montreal developer Kenji Wellman developed an app called twtspire.com that scours twitter and automatically detects tweets from people that wonder why a solution doesn't exist for a specific problem they're having. Here are example of tweets from twtspire.com that could result in some kind apps Why isn't there an app that auto-deletes texts you send after 4am. #facepalm Oh my god. Someone needs to make an app that makes an instrumental out of any song. #IsThatLegal #KaraokeAllDayEveryDay There's also evil ideas like: Wish there was a single website with complete book/movie summaries with spoilers. Twitter has over 50 million daily tweets, so testing and refining the app was done in a single week-end. The app uses a combination of keywords as well as keyword exclusion rules (which eliminate unwanted terms) and keyword proximity rules. For   Read more…


What’s the value of hackathons and hackathons? Interview with Charles Morand from the BDC

What’s the value of hackathons and hackathons? Interview with Charles Morand from the BDC 4506In the past 6 months, we've seen several initiatives in Montreal, such as HackingHealth, the cloud robotics hackathon, Startup Weekend. These events are open to anyone and is a good opportunity to start a project. Participants and partners also love the intensity and the fact that there's a prototype and a (glimpse of) a business at the end of the weekend. What's often missing from these events is guidance to teams about what's next for them, in terms of becoming a viable startup. It's often a hit or miss, before they become ready for launch, VC or angel funding. It's with this in mind that I discussed with Charles Morand, a senior analyst at the Business Development Bank of Canada or the BDC, involved in the "Anges Financiers" event, and also at Startup Weekend. Charles Morand also mentored teams at the event, and I wanted to see what was   Read more…


The growth of the Hacker community in Montreal

The growth of the Hacker community in Montreal 4495In the New York Times, Nadim Kobeissi tells how Sabu, at that time presumed to be the leader of the Anonymous network, tried to befriend him and get him into his schemes. A Montreal-based student and also encryption specialist, Nadim (@kaepora) is also famous for crypto.cat, a communication tool that is used by many security groups and also activists worldwide to send privately messages, without fear of detection. The messages are encrypted, and not even the operator of the infrastructure cannot read the messages. Even with the cryptocat cred, Nadim was still impressed to get messages from Sabu, and even more surprised to be invited to join in attacks. As most of you know, Sabu has know been revealed as the 28-year old NYC resident Hector Xavier Monsegur, paid by the FBI to reveal the identies of hacker "friends". Read more…


Portable Microbiology Lab -There’s an App For That!

Petrifilm Developed 4451The year is 2020. Somewhere in an African village a father is having a conversation with his son. “When you were just a little boy, we didn’t have phones that check water quality.” As incredible as it sounds, the technology is very real. The prototype was developed in just a few days by a local Montreal team during a hackathon called “Random Hacks of Kindness.” The event is about technology for humanitarian needs. The Open Source Android App is called “Portable Microbiology Lab” and here is how it works: A user puts a water sample on a 3M petrifilm and tells the App to register GPS coordinates of where the water was taken. After a 24 hour incubation period, the user photographs the petrifilm (example below). The App then applies filters to the image and counts the bacterial colonies. Sophisticated image recognition shows if the bacteria is ”e.coli” (very bad), “total coliform” (bad),   Read more…