Anatomy of a WordPress Hackathon

The Chicago Creative Coalition undertook a herculean task in 2011-12. The programming committee hatched an idea to recreate the C3 website in a decidedly “democratic” way. We would collectively re-think the purpose of our website for our membership and create it in a four-part hackathon. Utilizing the skills of the Chicago Web Professionals meetup group, we would start our planning in November 2011 and end with a “pedal to the metal” implementation in May 2012.

The WordPress platform was chosen for the website, also a decidedly democratic way to communicate. Those of us used to working in our studios or offices turning out finely tuned work to our own standards are a bit reminded of the sandbox rules of our youth. The object here will be to play well with others and swallow hard or look the other way if the offerings don’t pass muster. Yes, that means iPhone photos with red-eyes and non-writers generating all kinds of heresy! (We hope to have a bit of grammar oversite, at the very least.)

The operative word for both the hackathon and a WordPress site is collaboration. We are learning a new paradigm for communication for our creative organization — one that will evolve and expand as people come aboard to test the water. Indeed, our programming year for 2012 started with a session on “how to create a compelling blog post.”

If your tolerance for new ideas is turned up just a notch, you’ll recognize that out of the chaos emerges all the good stuff… new ideas, creative collaboration, enjoyment of colleagues’ viewpoints. The barn raising analogy was used more than once during the year and it still holds true.

Join in the fun, friends. To those who are shopping for creative professionals, take note of the gold mine within the hyperlinks on this site. You’ll find a wealth of what you need to move you, your business or your organization to greater heights.

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