Hack Day
DATE: Saturday, June 1, 2013
TIME: 9:00 AM-10:00 PM
VENUE: NYU Interactive Telecommunications Program
HOST: Francois Grey
PARTICIPANTS: Clay Shirky, Darlene Cavalier, Steven E. Koonin, Tom Igoe, Beth Simone Noveck

The World Science Festival and New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) team up to launch Science Hack Day in New York City. This two-day event will bring together scientists, designers, developers, and innovators. Hackers work in groups to mash up ideas, media, and technologies to create quick solutions: use bacteria from dollar bills to collect NYC’s genomic data, hack micro satellites to reflect sunlight, build a distributed computer simulation of the Large Hadron Collider, and much more. Join us for hacking, workshops, and the opportunity to work side-by-side with scientists. See what you can accomplish in just two days.


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Physicist, Citizen Science Leader

Francois Grey is a physicist and the head of Citizen Science at NYU’s Center for Urban Science and Progress. He launched the popular Science and the City hackfest series at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program and the first Science Hack Day NYC, which premiered at the World Science Festival in 2013. Grey has also started several volunteer computing or online citizen science projects, including LHC@home, Africa@home, and Asia@home. In 2009, he established the Citizen Cyberscience Centre in Geneva, a global partnership involving CERN (where he spent six years), the United Nations Institute for Training and Research, and the University of Geneva.


Interactive Telecommunications Professor

Clay Shirky is a leading voice on the social and economic impact of Internet technologies. Considered one of the finest thinkers on the Internet revolution, Shirky provides an insightful and optimistic view of networks, social software, and technology’s effects on society. Writing extensively about the Internet since 1996, he is the author of the best-selling Here Comes Everybody and Cognitive Surplus. Shirky holds a joint appointment at New York University, as an associate arts professor at the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) and as a distinguished writer in residence in the journalism department. He is also a fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, and was the Edward R. Murrow visiting lecturer at Harvard’s Joan Shorenstein Center on the press, politics, and public policy in 2010.

Over the years, he has had regular columns in Business 2.0 and FEED, among other publications, and his writings have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Wired, Computerworld, and Foreign Affairs. In addition to writing, Shirky has a consulting practice focused on the rise of decentralized technologies such as peer-to-peer, web services, and wireless networks that provide alternatives to the wired client/server infrastructure that characterizes the Web.

Citizen Scientist

Darlene Cavalier is the founder of SciStarter, an online citizen science community. The site is a one-stop-shop for citizen scientists and a shared space where researchers recruit participants. She is also the founder of, a site that creates mechanisms for public engagement in scientific research and policy discussions but is far better known for giving rise to the Science Cheerleaders, comprised of more than 250 current and former NFL and NBA cheerleaders who are also scientists and engineers. Cavalier herself was a cheerleader for the Philadelphia 76ers. These so-called Science Cheerleaders playfully challenge stereotypes, inspire young women to consider science careers, and involve people from all walks of life in citizen science. Cavalier is also the director of special projects at Discover magazine.

Cavalier collaborated with the NSF, NBC Sports, and the NFL to produce the Emmy award-winning Science of NFL Football series. Cavalier is also a founding partner of ECAST (Expert and Citizen Assessment of Science and Technology) a network of universities, science centers, and policy think tanks working on participatory technology assessment methods to better inform federal and state science policy making.

Theoretical Physicist

Steven E. Koonin was appointed as the founding director of NYU’s Center for Urban Science and Progress in April 2012. That consortium of academic, corporate, and government partners will pursue research and education activities to develop and demonstrate informatics technologies for urban problems in the “living laboratory” of New York City. He previously served as the U.S. Department of Energy’s second Senate-confirmed under secretary for science from 2009–2011. As under secretary for science, Koonin functioned as the department’s chief scientific officer, coordinating and overseeing research across the DOE.

As the chief scientist at BP from 2004 to early 2009, Koonin developed the long-range technology strategy for alternative and renewable energy sources. He managed the firm’s university–based research programs and played a central role in establishing the Energy Biosciences Institute at the University of California Berkeley, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Koonin is a member and past chair of the JASON Study Group, advising the U.S. government on technical matters of national security.

Physical Computing Professor

Tom Igoe is an associate arts professor at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP). Coming from a background in theatre lighting design, Igoe makes tools that sense and respond to a wide range of human physical expression. He is the area head for physical computing courses, and teaches courses in networking as well. He is also interested in how to lessen the impact that making things has on the environment, and how open hardware development can contribute to that. He has written three books for makers, and is working on a fourth. He is an occasional contributor to Make magazine as well. He is a co-founder of Arduino, an open source microcontroller environment built for non-technicians. He has consulted for various museums and interactive design companies as well.

Beth Simone Noveck
Professor of Policy and Technology, Author

Beth Simone Noveck served in the White House as the first United States deputy chief technology officer and founder and director of the White House Open Government Initiative. UK Prime Minister David Cameron, appointed Noveck senior advisor for Open Government. Noveck directs the Governance Lab funded by a grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Housed at NYU Wagner, the Governance Lab accelerates and assesses progress toward smarter, more collaborative, and decentralized governance.

Noveck founded the Democracy Design Workshop: Do Tank, a program for the design of law, policy, and technology to foster openness and collaboration. With support from the Sloan Foundation, she is currently prototyping OrgPedia, the Wikipedia of firms. With the support of the Omdiyar Network, MacArthur Foundation, and seven leading patent-holding firms, she designed and built the U.S. government’s first expert network Peer To Patent. The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the Council of Europe, and AmericaSpeaks have sponsored her research on online communities by funding then Cairns Project, graphical software to support group formation and collaboration.

Her new book, The Networked State, will appear with Harvard University Press.