Join California Code Rush 4 at NICAR in Denver

A fourth challenge to hacks, hackers and newbies of all ages

There will be swag.

Our crew is headed to Denver this week for the annual NICAR conference. And we’re packing a trunk full of tickets to continue our open-source quest to master CAL-ACCESS, the government database tracking California campaign cash.

We’re asking you to help us close them out.

We call it the California Code Rush. It’s a simple game. Submit a patch, win a prize.

We’ve had a blast running with the idea at NICAR last year in Atlanta, Media Party 2015 in Buenos Aires and ONA15 in Los Angeles. We’re back to try it again.

Don’t worry if you’re new to open source. Spend some time with our team and we’ll guide you through your first contribution, from fork to patch to pull.

A small-sized ticket won’t take longer than 20 minutes. You’ll learn how to use GitHub, make your first open-source software contribution and walk away with a limited-edition sticker (designed just for this event by our man Thomas Suh Lauder, using his mind-altering, Scoobymorphic Design™).

You’ll also be entered in raffle to win a prize from this year’s swaglode of California collectables. It includes:

Our whole crew will converge on the “Colorado A” room for a scheduled session Saturday March 12 at 2:15 p.m. to spend the afternoon hacking. Meet us there to learn more and get involved.

Or find us around the conference and we’ll help you start in. We’re planning on pitching a tent during our free time and blasting the location on Twitter with the hashtag #NICAR16.

You don’t have to be in Denver to win a prize. Close a ticket at any time between now and the conference’s close on March 13 and your prize will soon be in the mail.

Challenges are waiting in our core application, django-calaccess-raw-data, a backend app for downloading, extracting and loading the raw data from the state. Grab one and get going.

Many of the small ones, particularly the ones asking for documentation, won’t require you to install any software. But if you take on something big you’ll need to download the code as described here.

Want to know more? Email me at ben.welsh@gmail.com.