#HackTheBern A Huge Success!

Apr 13, 2016

Apr 13, 2016

Apr 13, 2016




So you may have heard of this past weekend’s #HackTheBern hackathon by now. We knew what we were taking on when we started this initiative, but we didn’t know how viral it would end up going. But more on that later, let’s dive right into the winning project, cause this could be a game changer (it’s gonna be used this Wednesday out in the field!).

Meet Bernie 360.

Visualize it. You, amongst the masses in the middle of a Bernie Sanders rally. You see Bernie up there in the front, then you turn around and see the crowd behind you. Then, you take off the VR goggles and relax on your couch, thinking about what you just saw.

That’s what the team behind Bernie 360 envision, and that’s exactly what they created, over the span of one weekend in New York City.

The Bernie 360 team in the middle: Jeffrey Zitelli, Kent Rahman, Dre Smith. On the left is Thomas Gilroy of NY For Bernie, and the on the right is Zach Schneider, Director of Tech for Bernie Sanders.

The team will take a bunch of GoPros on a pole, sync them to a remote via WiFi signal from each camera. And it records in the field.

This is our camera rig. It's made up of 14 GoPro HERO4 Blacks arranged to record 2 simultaneous 360 videos about eye-distance apart that allow for stereoscopic 3D playback no matter which direction the viewer looks.

The implementation utilizes the in-development WebVR API to deliver the VR experience via a web-browser. It can be used with Firefox or Chrome web-browsers, either on a mobile phone with a Google Cardboard viewer (ideally no special apps need to be installed), or a decked-out VR rig (e.g. desktop computer with Oculus Rift). At various points, 3D visualizations appear in the VR scene, hopefully to convey/emphasize information that Sanders is delivering at that particular moment.

As judge and Senior Writer at TechCrunch, Anthony Ha, said, “This was really cool, and I like that you were realistic about how it can spread beyond people who have VR gear.”

The second place project was You Got Berned! (lol).

Duncan Wall presenting You Got Berned.

Creator Duncan Wall designed a way for users to “nominate” someone politically on-the-fence and send them a fun and non-aggressive info sheet personalized to their interests. The user picks 3 things that their target loves (cats, Star Wars, etc.), 3 issues they care about (social security, immigration, small business, etc.) and someone she admires (Spike Lee, the Pope, Oprah, etc.) and a cheeky but informative graphic will be generated!

It’s designed to trigger a connection, by presenting his policy on 3 issues she cares about, how he addresses the issue she's concerned about, and then an endorsement from someone she admires.

Check out the rest of the great projects here!

And there’s more to come, plus an opportunity for YOU!

So stay tuned, the campaign is excited and cool stuff is coming soon! Very soon ;)

And the Bernie 360 team is looking for experienced VR people! Specifically those with experience implementing video in VR on the web. If that’s you, email zachschneider (at) berniesanders.com.




And thank you to our esteemed and amazing judges!