Christian hackathons are now a global trend. Five years ago there were virtually none. However, since 2013 we have seen over 40 hackathons from Leadership Network’s Code for the Kingdom, a few from Cru’s Indigitous, and one from InterVarsity’s Urbana. In fact, Indigitous has a 28-city global hackathon coming up this weekend (Nov 4-6, 2016), and Code for the Kingdom just completed a 12-city global hackathon in October.
If you aren’t familiar, a hackathon is an event where computer programmers, designers, and strategists collaborate over a short period of time to create a new project or feature. A Christian hackathon is one where local or global issues are tackled from a Christian perspective. It’s technology as mission.
As a big believer in these events, let’s take a look at some tools to help you make the most of a hackathon whether you’re a seasoned hacker or it’s your first time.
Product Research & UX Ideas
Open Church Cause Directory (free)
Use Open Church’s directory of causes for market research on what projects, tools, and technologies already exist. Such insights are great for inspiration and for accelerating your concept by learning from others.
ZURB Library (free)
Decades of research and designs curated by user interface patterns, behavioral patterns, code snippets, and UX factoids.
Christian APIs & Tools
Bible.org API – NET Bible (free)
API access for using NET Bible text in your web application or service.
Bibles.org API – American Bible Society (free)
The Bible Search Application Programming Interface (API) allows any developer to include Scripture content and text anywhere in their website or application for non-commercial purposes.
Biblia.com API – Faithlife (free)
Biblia.com API provides Web, mobile, and desktop applications with access to Bible text through web services. Specifically, there are services that get information about the available Bibles, download the text of those Bibles, and search those Bibles. Additional services support validating Bible references, comparing Bible references, and finding Bible references in text and HTML.
Church.io Open Source List
A list of open source software for churches.
Digital Bible Platform API – Faith Comes By Hearing (free)
The Digital Bible Platform provides simple API calls for easy access to Bible text, audio, and video in 800+ languages.
FellowshipOne API – Ministry Brands (free)
FellowshipOne is church management software that offers member care, check-in services, and small group management. Their REST API is a REST-based web application that uses several open protocols and patterns to provide consumers access to secure resources.
Harvest Information System (free)
A collaboration of several mission agencies to create standardized categories and codes for people groups, languages, dialects, geography, and more.
Jesus Film Project API (free)
Contact Jesus Film for more details on how to access their API of over 200 titles in 1400+ languages and 80,000+ videos.
General APIs & Tools
A customizable text editor for integrated development environments (IDE).
Time-saving synchronised browser testing that is fast and free.
GitHub Student Developer Pack (free for students)
If you’re a student, GitHub has bundled some of the best developer tools in one place and will give you free or discounted access to tools like Atom, the AWS cloud, Bitnami, CrowdFlower, Datadog, DigitalOcean, DNSimple, GitHub, HackHands, Microsoft Azure, Namecheap, SendGrid, Stripe, Taplytics, Thinkful, Transifex, Travis CI, Udacity, and Unreal Engine.
Google Drive (free)
Collaborate with your team with file sharing, collaborative documents, and presentation slides.
A collection of CSS3 powered hover effects to be applied to links, buttons, logos, SVG, featured images and so on. Easily apply to your own elements, modify or just use for inspiration. Available in CSS, Sass, and LESS.
Access over 1,700 free and premium APIs. Mashape also offers an assortment of additional developer tools to make APIs and coding easier.
Microsoft Cognitive Services (paid)
Build apps with powerful algorithms using just a few lines of code. They work across devices and platforms such as iOS, Android, and Windows, keep improving, and are easy to set up. The APIs include image analysis, facial detection, emotion recognition, speech recognition, audio to text, and recommendation engines.
An all-in-one, collaborative design platform to mockup, wireframe, diagram, and prototype digital concepts.
You can simplify mobile testing as well as demo without deploying. With ngrok, you can run personal cloud services from your own private network.
Origami Studio (free)
Explore, iterate, and test your ideas. A new tool for designing modern interfaces that is built and used by designers at Facebook.
Postman helps you develop and test APIs faster.
Search a directory of over 16,000 APIs.
Create and configure lightweight, reproducible, and portable development environments.
ZURB Foundation for Sites 6 (free)
Foundation is an advanced responsive front-end framework designed to get your project from prototype to production more efficiently. It includes a wide range of modular and flexible components that are easily styled.
Thousands of premium graphics, photos, audio, and video curated with Christian audiences in mind. A free account allows 3 free downloads per month.
Search through 1,203,391 icons or browse 27,094 icon sets.
Graphic Burger (free)
A buffet of free, high quality design resources including mock-ups, UI kits, icons, text effects, backgrounds, and more.
Over 50,000 premium royalty-free stock photos featuring Christian-specific content like Bible studies and Bible stories.
Open Church Resource Library (free)
Get over 2,000 free stock photos for your UI designs, presentations, and branding materials.
Tens of thousands of free stock photos.
Keep in mind this is far from a complete list! If you have a favorite, must-have resource that you bring to hackathons, you can share it in the comments.