DonorsChoose.org is looking for developers to build either apps with its API or perform analysis on the datasets. The former is important as, despite the impact the organization has had, the team remains small. "There's only so much we can do," says Oliver Hurst-Hiller, DonorChoose.org's CTO, who says the organization would like to improve its UI and have a mobile app. But the API and data are open to any number of projects as part of this hackathon. And the data is fascinating. It will include grade level and geodata, type of school (public or charter), and poverty level, for example. It will include information about the resources teachers are requesting - the amounts and prices for musical instruments, cameras, iPods, calculators, and the like. It will also include - all anonymized, I should add - the text from teachers' essays. It isn't just information about what teachers need help funding. It's what donors are interested in supporting. Again, the data is anonymized, but there is information about donation sizes, topics, and preferences. And the data also includes search logs, so you can see for example, that most donors who go to the site search for projects related to Autism.To this dataset and the contest, the educational social networking site Edmodo announced today it would also contribute data about social media usage in over 80,000 public schools. It also gave a nudge to teachers and students to enter the contest, whether it's to crunch data or build apps. The contest's grand prize is a trophy, handed to you by Stephen Colbert (along with tickets to watch a taping of his show). There are tons of prizes here and some great judges involved, but the big winner here I think will be education.
by Audrey Watters on 15 Apr, 2011
Audrey Watters is an education writer, a recovering academic, a serial dropout, a rabble-rouser, and some days, ed-tech's Kassandra.
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