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5 months ago

7 tips for creating award-winning apps


1. Think about the audience

“Our research shows previous Codegeist entrants that engaged in a more user-centric way of generating ideas had more success (made more money!) than those who didn't consider the user need.”

~ Caitlin McCurrie, Ph.D., Lead Researcher, Atlassian


2. Allow yourself time to dream

A hackathon can be your chance to try approaches you might not attempt in your day-to-day work. Have fun experimenting and learning!

If you don’t yet have that inspiration, “Just find the public issue tracker for the product you want to build on top of… it’s a gold mine of ideas.” ~ Vit Zurian, Appfire


3. Adopt an agile mindset

It is ok to not have all the answers from the start. Start small and grow from MVP.


4. Creativity (and clarity) counts

Do some quick research to see if your project is unique and then be sure to improve upon any existing solution.

Clean, organized video submissions and written explanations really do make a difference. So does well-formatted documentation and packaging of code.


5. Get feedback early, and often

Our most successful app developers in our Marketplace recommend getting feedback early and often. This doesn't need to be expensive or time intensive; just ask a friend, your Linkedin network, colleagues, even reach out for feedback on


6. Demo, camera, record! Don't forget to explain your "why"

Aim to finish your app at least one day before the deadline and spend the final day creating the video and completing the submission page. The code is important, but so is how you relay it to the judges! Get a friend to proofread. Make use of images, Markdown, and the optional prompts on your submission form.


7. Create accountability, and squad goals!

If you really want to make sure you follow through and don't lose your momentum, set some calendar reminders. For an extra incentive to do your best work, commit to showing your app to someone whose opinion you value.


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