H.A.R.D. Hack


H.A.R.D. Hack is a hardware hackathon that HKN holds annually in collaboration with IEEE. We provide the materials and the tools needed to make a hardware hack. Come out and build something cool! Anyone can attend, regardless of skill level, major, or university.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a hackathon?

    A hackathon is a gathering where people collaboratively build a project from the ground-up over a short period of time. While working on a particular project, the idea is for each group member to have the ability and freedom to work on whatever they want.

  • Is it free?

    YES! There is no fee associated with H.A.R.D. Hack. In fact, there will be food, water, and hardware provided at the hackathon. Just make sure to bring yourself! (And check out the next question to find out what's suggested to bring.)

  • What do I bring?

    These are some highly suggested items to bring: laptop, blanket, resuable water bottle, layers of clothing, comfortable clothes/shoes, change of clothes, toothbrush, deodorant, energy drinks, extra snacks, and any hardware you wish to use.

  • Do I need a team?

    Teams are up to 5 people, so feel free to work by yourself, in a pair, or with a full team of 5! However, it is recommended to form a team of 5 just because it's you and 4 other people working on one project versus just yourself.

  • Where is it?

    Price Center West Ballroom, UC San Diego

  • When is it?

    January 17th and 18th, 2020


Pre Hack Workshops
Wednesday (15th)Qualcomm WorkshopEBU1 2512 2:30 - 5:00 PM
Thursday (16th)NKK Switches WorkshopEBU1 2512 4:30 - 6:30 PM
Friday (17th)
4:00 PMGates OpenPC
4:00 - 6:00 PMTeam SearchPC West Ballroom
6:00 - 7:00 PMOpening CeremonyPC West Ballroom
7:00 PMHacking BeginsPC
7:00 - 8:00 PMDinner/Team SearchPC West Ballroom
7:00 - 10:00 PMMakerspace HoursECE Makerspace
8:00 - 8:30 PMAlwaysAI WorkshopERC Room
9:00 - 9:30 PMWearable Sensing WorkshopERC Room
11:00 PM - 12:00 AMIEEE WorkshopERC Room
12:00 - 1:00 AMACM WorskhopERC Room
Saturday (18th)
8:00 - 9:00 AMBreakfastPC West Ballroom
9:00 - 9:30 AMDigikey and NKK Swtiches WorkshopERC Room
10:00 - 11:00 AMNorthrop Grumman WorkshopERC Room
12:00 - 1:00 PMLunchPC West Ballroom
12:00 - 6:00 PMMakerspace HoursECE Makerspace
6:00 PMDevpost closesPC
6:30 - 7:30 PMDinnerPC West Ballroom
7:00 PMHacking EndsPC
7:00 - 8:30 PMJudgingPC West Ballroom
8:30 - 10:00 PMClosing CeremonyPC West Ballroom
10:00 PMDoors ClosePC



Request parts here

Slack Channel - our main form of communication for the hackathon:

Join the slack channel using this link!

HELPq - get live mentoring help:


Developer Discord - a place to have your technical questions answered:

Discord Server name: Developer-Evosystem
Global Server Invite Link: https://discord.gg/H5ETM7C
Direct invite to HARD Hack channel: https://discord.gg/XZFhUtM


Link to Challenge and Resources

Link to DragonBoard Slides/Documentation

Link to Hack Kit Contents

Northrop Grumman:

Link to Challenge and Resources


Link to Challenge and Resources/APIs

Digikey & NKK Switches

Link to Challenge

NKK Smart Display Overview

Smart Display Slides

Wolfram Alpha:

Link to Wolfram API Instructions


Diamond Sponsors:

Gold Sponsors:

Silver Sponsors:

Food Sponsors:

Hosted by:

Interested in sponsoring us? Please send an email to hardhackucsd@gmail.com

Contact Us

For inquiries, please contact us through this form!