We’ve Added Some FAQs
January 29, 2014
Got questions about Capitol Code? Hopefully we have answers for you in our new FAQs page. As more details are finalized leading up to the event, we’ll add more questions and answers to the page, and we’ll update the blog to let you know.
- What do I need to bring?
- Bring yourself, a computer, charger, perhaps some pens and paper for ideation, and some friends!
- Will there be food? (Vegetarian? Vegan? Gluten-free? Dairy-free?)
- Yes. Lunch, a light breakfast, and afternoon snacks will be provided. Be sure to fill out the Dietary Requests question when RSVPing, or contact the event organizers, to let us know of any food needs you have.
- Do I have to pay for parking?
- Some free street parking will be available around CoCo Uptown, but it will probably fill up quickly, so get there early.
- CoCo recommends participants use the Calhoun Square Ramp, located 2.5 blocks west on Lake Street. Calhoun Square Ramp provides all day parking for $11.
- We also encourage participants to carpool or use public transportation to get to and from the event. OMG Transit (a civic technology project born out of a previous Twin Cities jam), is a great resource for finding information on buses, Car2Go, and other transit options in the Twin Cities.
- Is it okay if I can’t be there the whole day?
- The event will open with some important background information and presentations about the data, and will close with demos and judging. We hope you can be here for the entire event, but as long as someone from your team is present, all will be good.
- What does the Registration Agreement mean?
- The only requirement that the Registration Agreement is placing on event attendees is to grant the SoS a nonexclusive license to access and use things built at the event. Because it is nonexclusive, you and your team are still free to do anything else with the code (as long as it doesn’t require exclusivity), including open sourcing it with whatever license you wish. In fact, I plan on encouraging participants to use open source/creative commons licenses with whatever they produce, and Open Twin Cities plans to catalog Capitol Code projects along with other civic tech projects happening locally, in the hopes that future civic tech folks will work contribute to the projects.
- A little bit of background: because of the source of funding used to sponsor this event, MN law requires that OSS have access to tangible products of the event. We originally thought of placing an open source requirement on participants as a way to meet this requirement, but we realized that forcing participants to use an open source license is actually a bit un-open source.
- Will I have to present something?
- Teams that have worked together during Capitol Code will be asked to make a short presentation at the end of the event so that all participants will get a chance to see what everybody worked on. This presentation should consist of no more than five slides or pages that illustrates the problem being solved, the solution being proposed, your team’s creation, the data being used and how it’s being used, and short bios for each of your team members. This will be shared publicly and posted on the Capitol Code site after the event.
Ideas and Teams
- Do I have to have an idea before I come?
- Not at all, but it’s highly recommended you stop by the Ideation Social Jam on Wednesday, February 12, 2014, from 5:30-7:30pm at SoMakers at DevJam Studios, 818 46th St in Minneapolis, to meet with some of the agencies supplying data, to meet your fellow Capitol Coders, and start brainstorming. It’s also recommended that you vote on, comment on, and submit project ideas on Capitol Code’s IdeaScale community.
- Are teams set before the event? Or at the event?
- Participants will have time in the morning during the event to form teams based on their interests in project ideas. It’s alright if you come to the event with a team, but we encourage you to be open to other participants joining your team during the event.
- How big should a team be?
- There are not going to be any rules placed on how big or small a team can be. Based on previous jams though, we do recommend that participants form teams of 4 to 6 people with varied backgrounds and skills.
- Can I work alone?
- It’s not required that you work in a team, but it is suggested so that you can maximize time and collaborate with folks with varied skillsets.
- Can I use data from sources not listed on the Capitol Code site?
- Please be sure to use at least one data source listed on the Capitol Code site in some capacity. Mashups of multiple data sources, including data sources not provided at Capitol Code, are more than encouraged. Think big!