Greg Gopman had his fantasy of hackathons smashed when he showed up to San Francisco four months ago, so he created one that he could be proud of.
This past weekend in San Francisco, Gopman hosted a hackathon called AngelHack, designed to be a platform for people to turn their ideas into working prototypes and pitch them to investors.
The idea is for budding entrepreneurs to walk away with not only a team, but with access to the infrastructure that is critical for ideas to grow into mature startups: mentors, VCs, and a community of other entrepreneurs.
We think this 27-year-old is someone worth paying attention to. The boy certainly knows how to hustle. He moved here from Miami, Florida, just four months ago and it seems like he already knows half of Silicon Valley.
"I came here and didn't know anyone. I always envisioned hackathons as places to test out ideas and gauge investor interest," Gopman said.
But that wasn't what Gopman saw when he showed up at TechCrunch Disrupt this fall. "There's no organization to it whatsoever. They don't help you — there's no mentorship. It's all about making money for TechCrunch. There's no incentive to help them build startups," Gopman said, ironically wearing a bright green TechCrunch Disrupt T-shirt during AngelHack.
So Gopman created one that would tap the talent in the valley and provide the participants with resources to keep their ideas alive after the hackathon ends.
It was a scramble to get the hackathon together in the last couple of weeks, Gopman said. The planned venue fell through at the last minute — so Gopman charmed Adobe into hosting the hackathon and talked Docusign, GitHub, and Box into sponsoring it.
AngelHack attracted more than 300 people over the weekend. Starting at 5 p.m. on Saturday, teams hacked away at their project for 24 hours. About 50 slept overnight. Finally on Sunday evening, teams presented their ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win $15K in seed funding from Startup Labs, among other prizes.
Joey Mucha showed up in a tiger outfit and brought a Skeeball machine. He's standing there with Greg Gopman.
Mucha is a competitive Skeeball player and challenged hackers to a match during the night.
The event started on Saturday. About 300 people came, 180 participated, and 135 presented.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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