There was a bit of a flurry of activity in the third week of October as various members of the ProZ.com site team gathered in Syracuse for a second hackathon.
For those not already familiar with the term, a hackathon is short event where developers and others get together to work intensively on one or more projects, with the goal being the creation of usable software, services, or other features. The first ProZ.com hackathon was held in July of 2016, and resulted in the creation of the What I am working on feature, in which to date just over 19,000 entries have been made.
This year, the team broke off into smaller groups to tackle four different potential services:
- Directory improvements (through self-ranking of services and specialty fields for the freelancer directory*, and a modernization of the Company directory)
- WWA ratings, a supplement to the Willingness to Work Again (WWA) feature
- ProZ.com payments for freelancers (“Get Paid Now”)
- Cloud jobs / Automated management of translation jobs
* The announcement of this project was made to the Certified PRO Network forums and will only be accessible if you are a member of the network.
A big thank you goes out to all the ProZ.com site members who made themselves available on short notice to participate in testing some or all of these potential services, and provided feedback which will help determine the value and direction of each.
A hackathon is a lot of work for everyone involved. For a group as culturally and geographically diverse as the ProZ.com site team, it is also an excellent opportunity for team building, to work face to face with coworkers who are usually in another country and/or time zone, and to get to know each other better, both professionally and personally. And it is a lot of fun! Despite the long days, the team still made room for other activities: group breakfasts, lunches, dinners and drinks, a bit of walking and talking around the town of Syracuse, and some team members might have been spotted in impromptu ping pong and football matches (not at the same time).
In addition, this hackathon included the celebration of the impending retirement of Enrique Cavalitto, who many may know from his seventeen years on ProZ.com as site user, member, moderator, conference speaker, powwow attendee, and staff member of eleven years.
Enrique helped start and oversee the Argentine office of ProZ.com, spent years coordinating with Translators without Borders, and more recently has been coordinating the development of the ProZ.com translation center, a service available to Business members on the market for ways to improve the management of their translation projects. As part of the celebration, Enrique was inducted into the ProZ.com Hall of Fame. I don’t think you’ve seen the last of him on ProZ.com, though. Best wishes in whatever comes next, Enrique!