A Winning Hackathon Project: the Lunch Button

A Winning Hackathon Project: the Lunch Button

At Bluecore, we have a very specific and wonderful problem: we have catered lunch every day. While this is great for our appetites and our wallets, it proved to be an organizational challenge. Each day, someone had to write into a Slack #lunch channel that lunch was available. Some days, people would forget. Other days, people were accused of purposefully holding back information.

In August 2018, Bluecore hosted an internal hackathon with a hardware theme. My lovely coworker Bahar Shah and I decided to tackle the lunch problem… there had to be a better way! We created a simple button that automatically post to the #lunch channel, making lunchtime notifications that much easier.

We worked together to wire up the breadboard, attach our button, and test our circuit. We formatted our SD card, downloaded Raspbian, and got coding. The code itself turned out to be a fairly simple Slack Webhook. Honestly, the hardest part was probably getting the newly-created button on Bluecore’s wifi!

We demoed our completed button at the end of the hackathon... and we won! Bahar and I were happy to have spent a quick day and a half filling a company need and learning more about hardware.

So now every day around noon at Bluecore, Bluecorians keep their eyes peeled for the signal in #lunch: