Open Sourcing

Chen Ye
Chen Ye
Nov 12, 2015 · 4 min read

Hack@Brown 2015’s infrastructure and website is now available here:

Read on for setup instructions.


Please note that our in-development 2016 infrastructure is not yet available. Stay tuned!

The 2016 infrastructure is significantly different from 2015. As a result, we are probably unable to help support updates or bugfixes from this repository. Sorry.

Documentation + Quality

Be warned that the code was never really intended for public eyes, and as a result, is pretty poorly documented and might be a bit messy in a few places.

My personal apologies for the organization of the CSS.

What’s Not There

We scrubbed personal data, and the reimbursements and acceptance algorithms from the repository.

Certain features require API keys to work properly. You can add these keys at



Download the Google App Engine SDK for Python to get started.

If you’re on Windows, you’ll also need to install Python 2.7, and if you haven’t already, install a git client. I recommend GitHub Desktop.


Clone the sanitized branch of the repository:

git clone -b sanitized

Now, open the Google App Engine Launcher. It should look like this:

Click File > Add Existing Application…

And select

[wherever you put it]/ Note that hack-at-brown-2015 is a subdirectory within the 
// repository, not the repository itself!

as the application path.

Hit Add and your GAE Launcher should look something like this:

Local Deployment

Select hackatbrown2015 in the GAE Launcher, and click the big green

If everything works, you should be able to visit localhost:8080 (or whichever port you have the project configured for), and the website should pop up!

Except you are now running it locally, and can change whatever you please.

If things don’t work, click the Logs button to find out why. If you find a bug, open an issue.

Basic Configuration + Use

Check out to enable registration and change other settings.

Go to app.yaml to modify Google App Engine parameters.

Go to localhost:8080/dashboard to access the organizer dashboard.

This will allow you to access checkin, look up hackers, send out emails, and do a bunch of other management tasks (with the proper configurations, keys, and authentications set up, of course)

Go to localhost:8000 to access the App Engine Admin dashboard.

This lets you access (and modify) the database directly.

Licenses + Copyright; Errata

Please note that the Hack@Brown logo and brand elements are ©2015 Hack@Brown. You may not publicly reuse or modify it without our permission. Contact us if you have any questions.

Sponsor logos are © the respective companies, and their terms apply when you use their logos.

Thanks to the good folk of HH Design for the impetus for this release!

Thanks to Sam Cauchemar (our 2016 dev lead) for helping with the gruntwork of making the repository presentable enough for the public.

Thanks to Sam, Will Thompson, Nick McKenna, Nate Parrott, and Arielle Chapin for being part of the 2015 dev team, and actually making all of this code happen.

Hack@Brown ‎

Make. Play. Learn.

Chen Ye

Written by

Chen Ye

Builds; explores worlds when not distracted by cats. SpaceX Design. Ex-@FacebookDesign, @IBMWatson, @Microsoft, @hackatbrown. Brown ’17.5

Hack@Brown ‎

Make. Play. Learn.

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