By Riley Kaminer
At today’s Founders Fund flagship conference in Miami, the organizers from Miami Hack Week announced that they will be moving their annual event to coincide with April’s Miami Tech Week. The nonprofit event, which this year took place in January/February, brings top talent from around the world to Miami. This change will go into effect during the next Hack Week, coming in April 2024.
Co-founder Ja’dan Johnson told Refresh Miami that the team decided to move the event to April primarily for practical reasons. “It is always a question of how we can be most effective with the resources we have,” he explained. The idea is that hosting the Hack Week during a time when there is a large number of events also taking place will provide participants with the full Miami experience.
“Now we’re force multiplying,” said Johnson. “Two massive events overlapping creates many more opportunities for people to participate.
Inclusion is also top of Johnson’s mind when it comes to the future of Miami Hack Week. “Hack week is intended to be a unique event that is catered to the whole community,” asserted Johnson.
This stands in stark contrast to the majority of Tech Week events, which are invitation-only. Much to the contrary, Johnson asserted that it is the Hack Week organizers’ intention to keep their event as accessible as possible. For instance, this week Miami Hack Week and Craft Ventures co-sponsored a day of programming about all things artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Apart from the change in date, the rest of the Miami Hack Week’s structure will stay the same. The one slight change Johnson mentioned was a slightly increased focus on appealing to more technically-minded hackers.
“Last year’s event was definitely successful,” said Johnson of the event, which brought 3,000 hackers to Miami. The Miami Hack Week team brought all of the main venues within walking distance in Wynwood – a change from previous Hack Weeks, which were more geographically decentralized. “We felt that this model was strong and really helped facilitate a sense of community,” added Johnson.
More broadly, Johnson remains bullish on the Miami tech ecosystem, noting its sustained momentum. “At the end of the day, the numbers don’t lie,” he said, citing recent reporting funding for companies in Miami has nearly quadrupled in the past three years. Closer to Johnson’s day-to-day, he noted that a recent Miami Hack Week build-a-thon attracted 600 attendees.
Of course, Johnson underscored that this growth has been a long time coming: “10 or 15 years of hard work, and we’re finally starting to see major results.”
“I’m very excited to continue being part of the rise of Miami tech and show people that there is some substance to what’s being built here and what’s happening in our community.”
READ MORE ON REFRESH MIAMI:
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