Thursday, December 27, 2012

CloudSpokes Partners With Daffodil International University!

We like being the leader in crowdsourced cloud development, but to maintain a bold status requires rapid growth, dedication to remaining the best and a commitment to finding new ways to evolve. We're not just talking about adding contests that require working with new technologies, or introducing functional challenges that are different from our historical focus. We believe that these changes make the community great, but at CloudSpokes, our number one priority is our members. We know that it's impossible to thrive without them.

During the past week you may have seen our member count jump quite a bit. Today, we're happy to announce that CloudSpokes has officially reached a sponsorship with Daffodil International University in Bangladesh! A partnership that not only has grown the CloudSpokes community by more than 10,000 new members, but also marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter in CloudSpokes history.

This new chapter comes on the heels of what we hope is a mass movement towards getting involved in higher education across the globe. During the partnership process, we've come to understand that this generation of students is unlike any other that we have seen before. They have attributed their advanced skills to the accessibility of technology from a young age and we're looking forward to watching them compete in challenges alongside our current CloudSpokers.

DIU students wearing CloudSpokes t-shirts
We have an opportunity with DIU to bridge the gap between young developers, designers and the professional world, by offering them a platform to learn the newest technologies and benchmark their skills. It is also an exciting day for existing CloudSpokers everywhere, who will now not only have a new class of competitors, but also a young generation to mentor and teach!

Also, DIU recently hosted the International Collegiate Programming Competition, on December 8, at their university in Bangladesh. For more information about the event, keep an eye on our blog in the near future for a featured guest blog by our very own Das Nobel, who helped facilitate the partnership and played a crucial role for CloudSpokes at the live event.

Banner outside the expo hall showcasing CloudSpokes as a partner

If you are interested in getting CloudSpokes involved in a partnership with your University, please reach out to me ( to get started. There will be extra benefits and rewards for those who set up partnerships! 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Introducing #DifferentSpokes

It seems like everyday a new idea comes along that we get really excited about, but don't always have the bandwidth to make a reality, or gets pushed to the low priority bucket where it might never see the light of day again. Sometimes all it takes is a refresh of an old idea to make new ones come to life.

That is the case with our Member Hangouts of old, and a new idea of a CloudSpokes book club. We decided to relaunch the hangouts, only now to be called #DifferentSpokes, and feature a segment called "Tech Book Club".

The Tech Book Club is something that we have been wanting to do for quite some time now and just needed the right place and time. Well that problem has been solved. On Wednesday, January 9th, at 8AM PST we will host our first #DifferentSpokes, a new twist on our old Member Hangouts. At that time, we will discuss our plans for #DifferentSpokes and our "Tech Book Club" segment, which will be pioneered by "JavaSript: The Good Parts" by Douglas Crockford.

#DifferentSpokes will be a recurring show, airing every three weeks from our original start date. For more information on #DifferentSpokes keep your eyes peeled for more announcements on our blog or our Twitter.

Also, make sure that you read "JavaScript: The Good Parts" by our first show on January 9th to be actively involved in our "Tech Book Club" segment. The book can be found on Amazon here and on Google Books here. There might even be some prizes dished out to those who are most active during the hangout.

If you have any feedback on what you would like to see talked about or featured in #DifferentSpokes, post your comments here.

BigQuery and D3js Mashup Winner!

In November we had this challenge running as our month long "First Time Submitters Challenge", and just the other day it was set to be scored. Well when we scored it we knew we had a special submission on our hands, and we finally announced the winner Today. 

Jady, who was the sole winner for this challenge had an absolutely incredible submission that completely crushed the requirements.
What we asked you to do was to just build something awesome with Google BigQuery with the options of using BigQuery through a web UI called the BigQuery browser tool, the bq command-line tool, or by making calls to the REST API using various client libraries in multiple languages, such as Ruby, Java, JavaScript, Python, etc.

Check out jady's submission video below and mess around with the sample app here. Make sure to stay tuned for the next First Time Submitters Challenge as the winner could be you!
Place: 1
Money: $750

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Introducing the CloudSpokes Referral Program!

Here at CloudSpokes we are always trying to come up with new ideas to make our community even more awesome. Over the past year and a half since our creation, we have done some pretty amazing things and have had some pretty innovative ideas, which you all have helped create, implement or even build from scratch. From a new mobile site, to Code Your Way to Dreamforce, CloudSpokes has always had our members as the top priority, and we really want to show our appreciation. To do so, we came up with something that might just be cooler than anything else we've ever done!

The CloudSpokes referral program! Much like that of a major credit card company offering cash back for using your credit card in certain places, you can now win some serious cash for referring your friends to CloudSpokes! We are excited to announce that starting immediately, when you refer someone you get 10% of all their winnings in their first year as a member! Now, you can win money, even if you don't win the challenge!

To do so, all you need to do is use your unique URL and when someone signs up, and goes on to win, you get that cash money as well! Sending out invites is super easy. Just head over to this page and we'll do most of the hard work for you. You can even see when your friends sign up and start winning money. We are also working on a cool little leaderboard for bragging rights. 

Not only does this allow you all as members to earn some extra money, but it creates another level of competition between you and your peers. Plus, there is no limit on how many people you can refer, so the more the merrier! It's a win win for everyone!

What are you waiting for? Start referring today!

Monday, December 17, 2012

So You Wanna Be a CloudSpokes Judge?

Do you love looking at code? Are you so awesome that you actually code in your sleep? Is your idea of an exciting Friday night browsing through Github looking at the latest commits? If so, we've got something right up your alley!

Be a CloudSpokes judge! Take your awesome development skills and help the community by judging CloudSpokes submissions. But wait, this isn't just a "for fun" proposition, we'll actually pay you $25 for each submission that you judge and a bonus of $50 for every 10 submissions that you judge within the same month. You can judge as many submissions as you'd like.

What are you waiting for? Head on over to the judging queue and find a challenge that matches you skills and sign up. You'll get instructions on how the judging process works and what it entails.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

OAuth2 with Eventbrite to Winners!

There is a long list of things that qualify as awesome by our standards here at CloudSpokes, and when you get a chance to combine multiple things on that list into one...well that qualifies as super awesome!

When we launched this challenge, and asked you to build some integrations with Eventbrite and, it definitely lit up our excitement light bulb. This challenge actually combined three of our favorite things with OAuth, Eventbrite and, transforming from a simple big rig truck into a crime fighting alien machine of domination just super awesome into #superfrickinawesome!

Ultimately sgurumurthy appeared to be the Optimus Prime of this challenge, crushing all of the Decepticons requirements and building a super slick app and winning first place. Deepu8 cruised into second place with a great submission, and a really good demo video as well. Check out his video below, and as always, congrats to all who participated!
Place: 1
Money: $500
Place: 2
Money: $200

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Salesforce Duty Calendar Winners!

Is there anything worse than trying to schedule on call shifts for a group of people? There is always someone who writes down the wrong info, and messes the whole thing up. Well not anymore, thanks to this challenge!

What we asked you to do was create a custom Visual Force page that displays a calendar, and allows users of the system to sign up for the on call shifts by day. That way everyone can sign up for a day, see who else signs up, and not worry about getting information mixed up ever again. Super awesome right?

Per usual this challenge garnered a lot of interest, and of course some really slick results. Soe came in first place with another great submission, which seems to happen every time he submits! Wrapping up the rest of the winners for this challenge were cloud110989 coming in second, and saransh coming in third.

Both soe and cloud110989 also included some really good demo videos with their submissions which are below, and are definitely worth a look! As always, congrats to all who participated!
Place: 1
Money: $750
Place: 2
Money: $200
Place: 3
Money: $50

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Unzip Files to Git Winners!

Sometimes here at CloudSpokes, the coolest challenges often create the most useful apps, that we end up using in our day to day jobs! This challenge was no different!

The task was to write an application in Java, that downloads a .zip file form S3, unzips the content, and pushes the file to a Git repo! A super cool, fun challenge that will boost our youtube cat video watching time productivity 10 fold!

This challenge is actually so useful as a productivity tool, that it is basically even writing this blog for me! Well, actually wcheung is just such a rockstar that he not only won this challenge with his killer code, but also with a super detailed write up, explaining his app, Octavius3! The following snippet from his writeup explains why Octavius3 is so #superfrickinawesome!
"MultiSourceCommitService supports both username/password and OAuth credentials for GitHub, lets you configure what gets committed and how, and accesses GitHub via the open-source GitHub Java API from The Octavius3 UI is backed by a Play Application controller which does the OAuth dance with GitHub and uses an IOUtils class and the MultiSourceCommitService to then download a source zip and commit its unzipped contents to GitHub as a new repo. The app downloads to a temp file and unzips to a temp folder, cleaning up when it's done committing. The app can be deployed to either Heroku or Cloud Foundry since both support Play and a system temp dir."
There were also some great submissions from  danielszak, jeffh and Enreeco who rounded out the winners circle, making some slick apps with great functionality! Check out the demo video for "Octavius3" below, as well as videos for 2nd and 3rd place, to see the awesomeness that this challenge created!
Place: 1
Money: $500

danielszak - Demo Video
Place: 2
Money: $250
jeffh - Demo Video
Place: 3
Money: $100
Enreeco - Video Part 1 | Video Part 2
Place: 3
Money: $100

Monday, December 3, 2012

Opportunity Heat Map Winners!

One of the best things about CloudSpokes, is the amazing pool of talent in the community, and their relentless dedication to innovation and perfection! Ever since CloudSpokes started, the high level of competition from our challenges has created submissions of outstanding quality, proving time and time again, the power of the community.

Just two weeks ago, we launched this challenge, of hefty requirements and a short turn around time. Despite Thanksgiving Day falling smack dab in the middle, the submissions we received, blew us away!

The challenge was to create a heat map that would graphically represent "White Space" for a given Master Account, all while creatively showing where we have opportunities of various types for a particular master account by region and by business unit.

The first place submission for this challenge, came to us via soe, who completely shattered the expectations and annihilated the requirements, going far above and beyond what was asked in the short period of time. However, this wasn't just a one pony show either! Logontokartik and Manish_Kumar both had excellent submissions as well, rounding out the winners and making this a challenge for the ages!

Make sure to check out the first and second place demo videos below to see with your own eyes the awesomeness of the submissions, and you'll see why we are so excited about this one! Hopefully it fires you up as much as it did us! So what are you waiting for? Go get involved, and the next story could be yours!
Place: 1
Money: $1500
Place: 2
Money: $750
Place: 3
Money: $100