On Thursday, 23 May, just one day before the big Wikimedia hackathon in Amsterdam, Wikimedia Israel held its first hackathon in Tel-Aviv.
Israel has a thriving software industry, as well as a healthy Wikipedia editing community. Despite this, there are relatively few software developers in Israel who work on Wikimedia-related projects, so the primary purpose of this event was to show new people who are skilled in programming and web design how they can contribute their talents to our free knowledge projects.
Wikimedia Israel already organized a hackathon as part of the Wikimania 2011 conference, which was held in Haifa, but this was the first time that such an event was produced in Israel independently of other events.
In the best hackathon style, the event focused less on talks and more on code, but I was very happy to host one guest talk by Mushon Zer-Aviv, a developer of the freely licensed Alef font, designed as a modern Hebrew and Latin typeface for the web.
I want to use this opportunity to give my very sincere thanks to the people who helped me organize the event: Chen Davidi, Itzik Edri and Dorit Shafir-Diamant, who were instrumental in organizing the event’s logistics; Michal from Google Israel for providing the venue; and also to Yair Talmor, Chezi Reshef, Yael Meron, Elad Alfassa, Oren Held, Moshe Nachmias and Yair Podemasky, who very kindly volunteered to help with setting up the venue, handled the registration and cleaned up at the end of the day.
The event was very satisfying, and we hope to have another one soon!
Amir E. Aharoni, Wikimedia Israel
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