Artists, writers, designers, and students will gather to make cool science happen at the Science X Kickstarter Hackathon, hosted by the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at NYU Tisch, February 28- March 1.

Stock photo of a man's hands typing on a laptop

The first-of-a-kind hackathon brings scientists – both professional and amateur – together with artists, designers, makers, writers, and experts from the Kickstarter community to develop compelling crowdfunding campaigns for their projects.

“Hackathons have traditionally been the realm of software developers, interface designers, and project managers, but we believe amazing things will happen if scientists are paired with artists who have a tech sensibility,” said Nancy Hechinger, a member of faculty at ITP and co-organizer of the Hackathon. “The concept of bringing arts and tech together is at the heart of what we do at NYU ITP. We know the concept works, and we’re excited to see how it plays out in an accelerated environment.”

Organizers of the Science X Kickstarter Hackathon selected 16 scientists to participate, focusing on projects that range from using big data for sorting trash to laser cooling for detecting antimatter, and from developing a genomics-based beer analysis tool to GPS-enabled mine-sniffing dogs. Participants are invited to weigh in on the development of each of the projects (full list below).

Beer DeCoded
The 1,000 beer genomes project

an app and joystick controlled gaming system where you control the motions of an aquatic microorganism.

Broadcasting Ecological Restoration at Freshkills Park
Bringing restoration and scientific research at the closed Freshkills Park site to the public via digital applications and resources.

Cities at Night
Make a color map of the Earth at Night with images taken by astronauts from the ISS


Cosmic Pi
A compact Cosmic Ray detector designed by scientists working at CERN for educators and enthusiasts to visualize particles from space.
eCan Machine Learning
Earn rewards by cleaning up litter! eCan is a project to update old public waste baskets with technology that rewards users!

Gelfoo - smart gel imaging for everyone
Capture, upload, analyze, save, and print, all with the click of a button! Gelfoo: open-source wifi-connected digital imaging

Guardian Angels: Rovers Protecting Threatened Tortoises
With remotely controlled devices we will give online helpers the tools to do environmental good while having great fun.

Ice drop
First-ever laser-cooling of negative molecules to cool antiprotons to make ultra-cold antiatoms to test gravity.

LabLessons: Bring Digital Laboratory Exercises To Students
LabLessons aims to bring technology into STEM classrooms, providing students with digital simulations to make learning more intuitive.

Leaf Chamber Project - The Photosynthesis Calculator
Our device enables an economical way to estimate respiration of vegetated areas and determine their role in mitigating global warming.

PhotosynQ: Global Plant Health Tracker
PhotosynQ is an open source platform to create, share, and analyze plant health information across the globe.

SMARTDog. The wearable tracking and demarcation system for dogs in rescue and de-mining operations

Strømlingo DIY AFM Kit - A Nano Microscope For Everyone
Exploring "Real Nanoworld" becomes affordable now! Build your own 10,000,000x magnification microscope with the Strømlingo DIY AFM Kit!

The Kitty Microbiome Project
Just like people, cats depend on microbes in their guts to aid digestion, provide nutrition and support immune function.

Urban Decay -- Food to Compost
NYC food scrap collection & compost sites. Map, monitor & message. At the heart of disruption is activitsm. "Measure-Data-Truth"

The Kickstarter Science X Hackathon is co-organized by NYU Tisch ITP, Kickstarter and the Citizen Cyberscience Centre, a partnership between CERN, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research and the University of Geneva. The event will take place at NYU Tisch ITP, located at 721 Broadway, 4th floor, between Washington and Waverly places. Participation is free and open to the public, though a limited number of tickets are available. To register, visit Eventbrite.

About NYU Tisch ITP
ITP is a two-year graduate program located in the Tisch School of the Arts whose mission is to explore the imaginative use of communications technologies — how they might augment, improve, and bring delight and art into people's lives. For more information, visit


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