Friday, January 27, 2012

"Hack the Future" Event at the Tech!

Over 100 students will participate in a full day “hackathon” to learn about innovation from rock-star tech leaders like Pong creator Allan Alcorn and engineers from Facebook.

SAN JOSE, SILICON VALLEY, CA - On Saturday, January 28, 2012, the third Hack the Future will take place at The Tech Museum in San Jose, California. Hack the Future is a one-day hackathon, designed to inspire and encourage middle and high school geeks to take learning into their own hands and show them what it's like to be a hacker.

Joe Mathes, startup engineer and Hack the Future co-creator, explains, "Hack the Future is the first chance many kids will have to enter the exciting, advancing field of technology. Programming is literacy. To be great, you have to start when you're young, and you have to learn it from someone who knows the language. As professionals on the cutting edge, we wanted to teach what we know straight from the front lines."

Over 30 mentors will teach the day-long event, which consists of a series of stations where young hackers can experiment with everything from creating computer games to soldering. Lee Felsenstein, the designer of the first mass-produced portable computer, will be helping to inspire the next generation of future tech leaders. Local engineer Allan Alcorn, best known as the designer of the wildly popular 1970s video arcade game Pong, will also be on hand to share his remarkable story and to help guide students’ tech creations.

“The highlight of the day is seeing the kids accomplish something they are proud of,” says mentor Sarah Elliott. “You should see their faces when they create code that ends up moving a half million dollar robot. It’s incredibly rewarding.” 

Mentors from companies including Facebook, Twilio and other Bay Area-based startups will mentor the students. Microsoft is one of the event’s primary sponsors, as well as The Tech Museum.

Jeff Lindsay, Founding Director at Hacker Dojo, says “With a laptop, you can change the world, start the next Facebook. Nowhere is this passion more evident than at Hack the Future.”

For Willie Yee, 12, the event is like Christmas in January; it's the reason he signed up so quickly. "I like programming," says the San Jose 7th grader. "But I really want to learn more complex commands for some programming languages." 

Reporters interested in interviewing Hack the Future mentors or students should contact Daniel Jabbour at 516-642-1119 or

For more information on Hack the Future visit

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