Pound Around the World – My Thoughts from Random Hacks of Kindness

random hacks of kindness logoThis weekend, I took part in Random hacks of Kindness, a social enterprise hackathon taking place all around the world (Google is one of the sponsors).

I usually attend these things as a mentor, but this time I decided to roll up my sleeves, pitch an idea and get a project done in one weekend (48 hours). Time flew by and it didn’t feel like ‘work’.

Since the organizer in London was a charity call Mybnk (teaching youth financial literacy), the problem we focused on was financial literacy for kids – who are under increasing pressure to spend more money on having the right toys, brands, clothes by TV and friends. Parents have a hard time teaching them the value of money.

Our solution – Pound Around the World, is an online/tablet game for kids to learn the value of money, by showing them just how far 1 GBP can go in different continents. For example, you can save 7 trees in the rain forest in south america for £1, and in India you can get all you can eat curry…(see the presentation on the link below – 300 views in about 1 hour from posting!)

We deployed a demo on the cloud using Heroku – and I re-learned some of the challenges developers face in the early stages. Google App engine doesn’t support Ruby on Rails, and many game developers have to start from scratch because there aren’t many frameworks to easily develop in HTML5 format that’s friendly to mobile browsers (i.e. Israeli startup Mominis is one of them, but the usability is pretty poor and it’s in .NET)

Random hacks of kindness project London

Once we brainstormed potential features for the Pound Around the World game, it was important to move quickly to game mechanics and wireframing to have a working demo by the end of the weekend.

Our team was really kick-ass, we jelled well from the beginning which made the process so much more enjoyable. PAW (Pound Around the World) ended up winning 2nd place, which we were really proud of, in light of the 8 other groups that worked on some great projects. We all enjoyed it and learned something in the process. If you want to learn more about the organization and the projects around the globe, check out http://www.rhok.org

Eze Vidra
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Eze Vidra

Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote
Eze is the Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a startup helping patients search and match to clinical trial, to accelerate medical breakthroughs. Previously, Ezewas a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before GV, Eze founded and led Campus London, Google's first physical hub for startups, and was the Head Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He's an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.
Eze Vidra
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Eze Vidra

Eze is the Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a startup helping patients search and match to clinical trial, to accelerate medical breakthroughs. Previously, Eze was a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before GV, Eze founded and led Campus London, Google’s first physical hub for startups, and was the Head Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He’s an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.

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