In a blog post a few weeks ago, we talked about the role hacking plays at Electric Imp. In short, we (a) love to hack and (b) actively encourage hacking within our fast growing community of makers and inventors. We recently brought these two loves together at Hack With Us, a day-long Electric Imp hackathon held in San Francisco in partnership with New Relic.


It was an amazing day and we had a terrific turnout from lots of enthusiastic and innovative makers who came to meet the like-minded, learn from us, Firebase, and each other, and create some cool imp-enabled devices. In all, an eclectic assortment of 10 clever devices were made – including robots, YouTube video view LED counters, and a “Simon Says” type memory game. Of those, the following four were voted by attendees as particularly prize worthy.


Tying for third place in the hackathon were two unique projects – one intended to measure the “beating” of the earth and the other the beating of the human heart. The first was from a hacker group calling themselves the Quakers who made a small, inexpensive piece of hardware that senses vibrations, then sends a message to a central server to let you know when the vibration occurred. When crowdsourced over several devices in various locations, it can alert you when an earthquake is occurring and estimate the epicenter.

The second project hacked a LED bracelet given out to hackathon attendees by Firebase. Originally, the bracelet lit up through fast arm movements via an accelerometer. The project integrated two imps, one which was attached to a heart monitor and the other connected to the hacked bracelet, enabling the device creator’s wife to monitor his heartbeat.

With Valentine’s Day right round the corner, what better way to show your significant other how much you love them!

Second prize was awarded to a group who created a couple of imp-enabled HexBots, and controlled the pair through a browser to perform synchronised dance routines.


Grand prize went to a device called Implay, created by a team from IFTTT, which consisted of tiny speakers connected to a breadboard that played four channels of music simultaneously. The device enabled songs – in this case, video game tunes – to be tweeted through Music Macro Language.

Once again, a huge thanks to all the participants and our friends at New Relic and Firebase for their hackathon partnership, support and generosity. We can’t wait for the next one!

Until next time, keep on making!

Tom Sarris
Communications Manager