April was #ourmcrhack, a month which gave a snapshot of our city. People were encouraged to post photos, videos, sound and text on social media streams (mainly Twitter) with the #ourmcrhack tag. The end aim, to create content for a Creative Hackathon that was held at Central Library on Sat 28 April.
The Creative Hackathon, funded by the Carnegie Trust, gave a great insight into how our city is viewed by the very people who occupy it, as residents, visitors and places of work. The images and videos (approximately 1000) tend to capture a mix of stunning skyscapes taken from some of the city’s highest places, pet’s (we’re an animal-loving city), iconic buildings and streets, graffiti, nature in all of it’s spring glory, routes to work, shopping, litter, litter cleanups, homelessness and of course reflected the weather this April i.e. torrential rain juxtaposed by brilliant blue sunny skies!!
We visited and met with really interesting groups and people whilst promoting the Hackathon. The Power-rangers an older people’s group based in Moss-Side agreed to their weekly get together being filmed by a young digital volunteer, discussing photography, struggling Marathon runners and Windrush. The Place on Platt Lane’s Talk English group embraced the opportunity of a walk, armed with iPads in sunny Platt Fields Park on the hottest day of the year…so far. Asylum Seekers and Refugees from a community allotment project treated us to a peek of the beautiful haven that they have created and some indoor/outdoor cooking. Market traders from Harpurhey posed in front of their stalls and local children showed us their building a city out of boxes in Newton Heath Library. The children and young people of Moss Side Powerhouse getting in on the act produced great creations of their favourite Manchester people, palaces and events.
About 60 people attended the actual Hackathon, which was run by DigiEnable. They “hacked” photos into new creations using a bunch of free online software to make word clouds, mosaic pictures and a variety of other photo creations. It was great to see Holly from Exeter Libraries, who are planning their own Hackathon and Lauren Coutts from Carnegie. All in alll a great month!!
To have a look at the great pieces created at the Hackathon click on the pointers, on the Map below, then click on the image to enlarge.