Rex St. John | Developer Evangelist
July 25, 2014

APIs: The Key to Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse?

 

This post originally appeared on the Mashery Developer Blog where our Developer Evangelists recount the best stories from Hackathons they attend around the world. 

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ToorCamp is a unique hacker camping event which occurs every other year in remote Neah Bay, Washington. As a developer evangelist, ToorCamp interested me because 1,000 or so hackers, makers, engineers and software types make the trip and I wanted to see what it was all about. While I was out there I dressed like a yeti and threw the world’s first “Mashquatch Survival Hack” to challenge these wilderness hackers to show me their best survival projects.

It was a unique experience.

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Some very creative folks show up at ToorCamp including HackerFriendly (pictured above). Last ToorCamp, he built a massive sky-laser which required 3 months to get FAA approval. This year, he focused his energy on Tesla Coils and a highly dangerous “Tesla Cannon.”

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Music is a big part of the event. Many creative music hacks and wearables were on display. In the above image, Jeff Records of OlyMega demonstrates a wearable helmet decorated with flashing lights tied to his DJ rig.

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One of the annual favorite survival hacks comes in the form of “ShadyTel.” ShadyTel is a “real” cellphone and phone network which is constructed on the fly by a group of telephony junkies. By the end of the event, the entire camp is wired for land-line calls and 2G cellphone coverage (including the bathrooms).

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Some of the survival hacks on display included a “Solar Death Ray” like the one above which proved useful for heating frozen chimichangas.

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The above survival hack involved using a radiator, a campfire, the bed of a pick up truck and a hose leading to the ocean to produce a “hot tub.”

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The pickup truck “hot tub.” Unfortunately, the tide was out so these folks had problems filling their tub.

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The Mashquatch enjoying a few minutes in the foam pit between judging survival hacks.

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Franklin Hu demonstrates his solar panel…made from other solar panels (very creative!).

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Ultimately, Franklin won the “Golden Squatch” award for the best overall survival hack for his Solar Death Ray. The Mashquatch is partial to chimichangas in general so it was a slam dunk.

ToorCamp was a real challenge to pull off but I enjoyed myself thoroughly and met numerous influential members of the maker community.