Chrome, webdev

Dart Hackathon TLV Summary

So we had during last Friday and Saturday a Dart Hackathon in Tel Aviv. When you have a group of people (OK… hackers, geeks, coders and software engineers ninjas) coming to spend their weekend hacking on the bleeding edge of technology you know good things will come live. I thought we will have some cool demos in the end but the level of the projects we saw was very impressive. From a generic library of Types to new math game that is doing some clever things with inheritance, canvas and other goodies both on the server side and the client.

Few teams that I would like to mention here:

  • DJ web app – A cool web app that let you ‘play’ the DJ part.
  • Volfied like game, only much better –
  • GraphMVC – A modular framework for graph (vertices/edges) data structures
  • Implement the Novem game in dart – It’s a new math game that doesn’t exist on the web (nor on mobile) so they are keeping the source for now. We might have some parts without the algo in Github in the next few days.

All the information about the teams with their ideas and links to their Github repositories

Few hackers came to me during the event with questions about Dart server side. Here is a basic example to server side crawler: it took me less then ten minutes to write it and I’m sure you can take it from here to the next level. I’ve also had a bit of time (not too much) to work on a web app. It is a simple way to watch cool photos from Instagram on your browser. The code is in Github under DartInsta and this project uses several technologies:

  • Dart – of course… all the main logic of the web app is written in Dart.
  • Twitter bootstrap – yes, let’s have some good responsive layout without to invest too much effort.
  • Y! pipes for the feeds – who said you can’t enjoy JSON from any web site on the web?
  • Instagram (or the unoffical web.stagram API) – After all, we do need some photos and it’s better to have some real good ones.

Some thoughts for the future:

    • Dart is a cool pre alpha technology that (I hope) going to help us build solid web apps without the need to be a ‘guru’. It’s still very (very) early so there are many things that we could improve over time.
    • The community (web developers, Java developers etc’) should try and see what are the libraries the will give the most ‘bang for the buck’. Since it’s so early in the life cycle it will be great to have some libraries that moving everyone forward and not something like the case with jQuery slideshows (= too many not so ‘great’ ones).
    • We should do more events like this but not on weekends so people that can’t drive on Shabbas could join us.
    • Dart is very easy for Java developers. It’s not the case with ‘hard core’ JS ninjas.
    • In case you are going to organize an hackathon here are few great tips.

(*) For hebrew speakers, here is a great explanation that was recorded two days after the event.


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