Numbers That Matter aims to explore what would happen if people could create smart devices that reported very specific data to the wearer – numbers that mattered to them the most. If we could invent a watch that told you that your neighbours were probably bored and looking for companionship, if we could invent a litmus badge that changed colour telling you how healthy the areas you frequent are, if we could invent a bandana that unfurled in sociable places, how would it affect us? Would they change our behaviour as individuals – but more interestingly, could they help us become more aware citizens?

Numbers That Matter has identified the needs of individuals and communities – now it’s looking at ways of realising them. We’re opening this up to the makers and developers of Manchester for an intensive two-day hackathon with a number of challenges from the communities around Manchester. The winning hack will receive further development support for a full field trial – though it’s a great opportunity to meet up with others exploring wearable technology!

We have a body of documentation we’ll make available about what people want, how they understand and relate to data around them, and ideas for possible devices. You’ll be able to explore and help realise these ideas – either as they are, or from your own perspective. We’ll have equipment for you to use, from Raspberry Pis to Arduinos, and experts on-hand who will help you get to prototype.
We encourage collaboration between participants – if you don’t already have a team to work with, you can meet up with people at the start of the event. It’s easier to complete a hack if there’s a range of skills and people working together.

Entry is open to anyone; professional developers, activist hackers, design students, anthropologists, sociologists, geeks and social entrepreneurs are welcome, as is anyone who feels they can contribute to the day.