Problem Statement

Why Human?

This year’s event will focus on our inherently human connection to art and how technology is changing that relationship, exploring topics such as immersive and embodied storytelling, creative artificial intelligence, radically inclusive fashion, and more. The human race has always practiced creativity. The urge to create art is rooted almost as deep as our instinct to survive. Today’s emerging technologies are disrupting the ways we use our creative minds and are dissolving the divide between human and technology.  Now, Hollywood parades a  future dominated by technology and artificial intelligence.  But at Hacking Arts 2017, we want to start a different discussion.  What makes art created by a human unique? What are the technologies altering humanity in art as we know it?  Is art the last frontier for tech?  If so, what new doors are opened up at this intersection of art, technology, and humanity? These questions all underly our broader question “Why Human?”

You are a team of artists, dreamers, innovators, entrepreneurs and technologists.  In a time where technology is continuing to be integrated into our human activities and interactions, your task is to design or build a prototype that envisions a future where technology and art are used to enhance our collective humanity.  Use your imagination to illustrate how art and technology will intersect in the future to encourage unique forms of human expression, identity, perception, communication, and connection.

Your hack should address at least one of the following topics, with bonus points for addressing more than one:

The Future of Artistic Creation

How will the artist’s creative process continue to evolve with the advent of new tools and technologies?  Develop an example of the future of art-making, and speak to the implications this future has on artist identity.

The Future of Performance

What will it mean to participate in live performance in the future?  How will boundaries around time and space be altered?  Demonstrate how technology will allow for people to experience live performance in new ways, and what implications this future has on the way artists craft their careers.

The Future of Artist-Audience Connection

How will future artists be able to develop meaningful connections with audiences through commerce, patronage, tribes, communities, collectives, or more?  Illustrate the future of artist-audience connectivity.

In addition to the above challenges you may also address one or several of the below branded challenges:


Christen Lien Artist's Challenge

Looking for:

Cutting edge concepts and execution that utilize the artist's abilities or assets in order to create new art / experiences / assets / insights that can inspire, engage and positively impact people's journeys.  Technologies utilized may encompass AR, VR, AI, Biometrics, Motion Capture, Neurometrics, and more.

Judging criteria:

- creativity
- innovation
- aesthetic quality  
- fan experience
- ability to build into a bigger project
- commercial viability
- wow factor 

Assets to utilize: 

- Depth Kit volumetric video of live performances
- song loop stems for immersive / 360 audio
- final compositions
- video performances
- photography
- graphics
- live viola for Perception Neuron hacking
- ability to perform as part of hack
- your brilliance

BuzzAngle Challenge


BuzzAngle Music is a New York-based music technology company that provides a unique SaaS application that revolutionizes the way businesses research music consumption and related trends. BuzzAngle Music’s state-of-the-art platform analyzes the daily sales, streaming and airplay activity of albums, songs and artists in North America and beyond. BuzzAngle Music launched in the U.S. and Canada in May 2016 and collects daily data from:

 - Sales retailers such as Apple, Amazon, Google, Target, Best Buy and hundreds of independent music stores
 - Streaming providers such as Apple, Amazon, Google, YouTube, Spotify, Napster, Vevo
 - Terrestrial radio airplay from iHeart/Mediabase
 - Shazam tags

Challenge description

BuzzAngle has captured the attention of the music industry for its ability to provide transparency, granularity and deep query capabilities of current and past results. The challenge is to determine if the data BuzzAngle is collecting can be used in a predictive fashion, such as to provide forecasts, to predict a hit song before it becomes a hit or to determine how, when and where to promote a song. The winner of the challenge will be the team that best provides a predictive analytics model using the BuzzAngle data.

BuzzAngle Music APIs

The following BuzzAngle Music private APIs will be made available:

 - GetSongSalesChart - the top 1,000 songs ranked by digital song sales for a given week
 - GetSongStreamsChart - the top 1,000 songs ranked by streams for a given week
 - GetSongShazamsChart - the top 1,000 songs ranked by Shazams for a given week
 - GetSongProjectChart - the top 1,000 songs ranked by a weighted value of digital song sales and streams for a given week
 - GetSongHistory - for a given song, weekly historical transactional data and ranks for each consumption type (sales, streams, airplay, Shazams); also possible by market area
 - GetSongMarketData - for a given song and a given week, detailed consumption data including ranks, rank changes and index values

You may find more information here:

Perception Neuron Challenge


Noitom is the global leader of versatile and affordable motion capture technology. Headquartered in Beijing and Miami, Florida, the company is dedicated to making motion capture technology accessible to everyone.

Perception Neuron by Noitom is the revolutionary full-body motion capture system that has democratized the MOCAP industry with its affordability and adaptability. Perception Neuron’s technology is based on inertial sensors that are able to capture motion data in real time, both wirelessly via WiFi or tethered to a computer system. Perception Neuron makes it possible to record motion data to apply to animation or visual effects, or it can be used to capture movement in real-time for live presentations or performances. Perception Neuron can be adapted to a variety of applications including animation, game development, virtual reality, visual effects and live stage performance. The sensors are placed on various parts of the body, including hands, to capture all or parts of its movements. Since Perception Neuron does not require an optical camera tracking system setup, and because it offers the flexibility to work both indoors and out in a large working space, the system allows for great freedom of movement that includes every part of the body all the way to the fingers. 

Perception Neuron is currently being used by various industries for a variety of applications requiring the capture of the human body’s movement. Increasingly, the system has been adopted by creative individuals looking to capture human movement to enhance their visual artforms and connect more closely with their audience. Some of the most unique applications of PN have been created by digital arts professionals such as: 

Fuse, Digital Arts Studio (Italy) - “Dokk, A Digital Journey”  (

New Media Limited, Film Directors - “The Giant” (

Marco Tempest, Multimedia Magician - “Magiclab 24 Drone Flight” (

Andrew Thomas Huang, Visual Artist and Filmmaker - “Flesh Nest” (

Ed Coy, Film Director - Ed Coy and The Mish Band - (

Method Studios (Australia) - "Dissipate” (

Challenge description

As Perception Neuron makes it possible to “give the body a digital voice” and enables us to actually capture human movement and translate it into digital data, how would you take this “digital voice” to create the art forms of the future?

To download Perception Neuron’s software, Axis Neuron, please visit: Password: 7JVwbKssUqbdn4MW

To learn more about Noitom, visit:

For more information about Perception Neuron, visit, don’t forget to check out our showcase!

Judging Overview

Your project will be judged based on the following four criteria:

Overall Quality of the Idea and Delivery

Project addresses problem statement, is innovative, and is communicated effectively.

Creativity / Use of the Arts

Project has high creativity, design and originally with strong ties to the arts. Arts includes but is not limited to: print, architecture, gaming, VR, digital design, music, dance, theater.

Technical Maturity

Project has a high level technical maturity. Examples of how this can be achieved are: sophistication of implementation, working prototype, integration of hardware and software, and/or diverse use of APIs endpoints.

Impact and Business Viability

Project is a viable business idea (for profit or nonprofit) and could potentially disrupt or significantly improve the particular aspect of the world in question.


Hacking Arts Best Overall Hack

We will award two Best Overall Hack (1st, 2nd) prizes to the top two teams that achieve the highest overall scores from the judges, indicating well-presented  innovative, creative, and impactful ideas that present a viable business opportunity.

First place - $2,500

Second place - $1,000

Hacker’s Choice Award

We will award one Hacker’s Choice Award to the team that receives the most votes for this award from the participating hackers.

Hacker's choice - $500

Branded Challenge Prizes

Christen Lien Artist's Challenge

$1,000 in prizes

BuzzAngle Challenge

First place - $1,000

Second place - $500

Perception Neuron Challenge

First place - $1,000 and a Perception Neuron 32 Kit

Second place - $500 and a Perception Neuron 32 Kit


Team formation

Team formation will be take place day-of. After the kickoff we will invite 45 second pitches - if you have a great idea and want to recruit team members please share! We will also create opportunities to meet other hackers with similar interests or complimentary skill-sets on the day of the Hackathon.  *You do not have to already be part of a team to register for the Hackathon* 


Time: Sunday 9:00am-10:00am
Participants: Mentors and all Hackathon Teams
Location: Multipurpose room and Silverline Skyroom

Each team will have two minutes for a lightening round “pitch practice” with mentors, who will provide feedback.


Time: Sunday 11:00am
Participants: All Hackathon Teams

All teams must upload their project to Devpost and their code to a github repository to be considered for judging. 


Time: Sunday 11:00am-12:30pm
Participants: Judges, Mentors and all Hackathon Teams
Location: Multipurpose room and Silverline Skyroom

Each team will have two minutes to present their project to a group of Mentors and Judges. Mentors and Judges will evaluate projects according to the rubric provided and the top ten teams will be selected as finalists. 


Time: Sunday 1:30pm-4:00pm
Participants: Judges and Hackathon Team Finalists
Location: Multipurpose room

Final teams will have 3 minutes to present, followed by 2 minutes of Q&A. After presentations, Judges will deliberate to determine top three teams. At this time, we will open up voting for the “Hackers’ Choice Award”.

After deliberation is complete, the judges will announce all the awards. Awards are cumulative, meaning you could win the Hackers’ choice and a top three spot.