UPDATE This topic is closed and kept for archival reasons. It is from the first 18 month of OSCEdays when everything was Challenge based. It was replaced with ACTIONS.
META: This topic is about "What Is A Challenge". If you want to get suggestions "How To Post A Challenge" in the community forum click here.
What is a Challenge?
The OSCEdays is a HACKATHON. A hackathon is a physical gathering where people come together and build things - like prototypes for example or tangible experiments. Sometimes the projects start and end at a hackathon, sometimes just first steps are made, sometimes a just a milestone in larger and ongoing project. Have a look at Science Hack Day Berlin as an example.
A CHALLENGE in the OSCEdays is a project to take on - "hack" on during or with the days. It can be all kinds of things. You can work on them in an already existing group or use the event to invite new people. Below you can find some possible meta-structures for challenges.
If you are looking for inspiration what could be good content for an Open Source Circular Economy challenge, have a look into the OSCE Future Wish-List.
Do you have an interesting, unexplored question or problem for example around a "service" innovation, a "supply chain" innovation, "logistics" innovation, a „communication“ innovation or a „hardware“, „software“ or „design“ innovation, that hasn't even been discussed? Sit down and start. The goal could be to find further questions for investiagtion, or an idea, or even fully-fledged action plan or model to start working on. The outcome could be short document describing your findings or even a quick and illustrative prototype made with cardboard.
Do you already have a great idea for a service, system, software or hardware solution? Start (or continue) prototyping! Use the OSCEdays platform to show people what you are doing, ask for help and invite them to join you.
Building & Implementation
If there is already a good practice, solution or plan developed, the challenge might be to implement it, for example in a local neighbourhood, factory, project or community. Form a group and swarm out to the city to talk to shop-owners. Or have an action-day to build more content for your project. Or do extended betatesting. Or build more copies of it... Do whatever steps are necessary to get to the next level.
You've already created a good technical solution or 'best practice' but it is not well-documented (open sourced) yet? Sit down and start the documentation. Invite people to test your documentation, give feedback, suggest good tools or structure, or provide other help with design, language or anything else. Communication is key.
Playing & Researching
Creativity means to jump outside of the box. Some challenges will be very unusual or different from the ones above. Well, the 'play' tag is for you. It might be research or experimentation, for art or protest, for laziness or communication.
These are some general ideas for challenge meta-structures and their tags. Note that there is a variety of tags available for the content of challenges like „textiles“, „3dprinting“, „packaging“, „materials“ and many more.
Use the Event to Accelerate Existing Projects
A hackathon event like the OSCEdays is a methodology that produces certain energies and possibilities that can be used to accelerate existing projects:
Motivation: It makes it easier for people to commit and contribute to something. Because they commit only to an event (which is something easy to understand and has a defined end-point).
Attention: It creates attention and therefor networking possibilities. In the case of the OSCEdays even on a global scale.
With the right framing of your challenge you can use this to make a lot of things happen for your existing project: Get things done and get new partners and ideas. Defining a challenge is a creative task. In its core it is a question or task that can be answered or solved during or with the event. In the best case your challenge covers one ore even all of these 3 aspects:
It is easy to understand and communicate, and appealing. A defined outcome that is tangible, easy to understand, inspiring and maybe even funny or surprising is great for this! Practical and hands on things also.
It is a real and useful stepping stone for the development of your project - something that is on the to-do-list anyway. Use the event to get things done. Activating the help of others.
Uses the marketing and networking possibilities of the event. For example to get in touch with potential partners or collaborators. Ask them to do a small project together for the event (see Motivation above) and build first bridges, that might grow into more stable collaboration in the future.
Example : Textile Group in Berlin
The textile group in Berlin is thinking about creating and having an interactive model of an assembly line at the venue reaching from textile production to manufacturing to selling to use-phase to recovery to recycling. Tangible and and visible. To make this happen they would have to talk to a lot of manufacturers. But those would have to commit just to an event, not for ever. Which is easier. But once this is done, they are already in an "how to do things" not in the "if to do things" dialog anymore. (Of course this challenge takes time to prepare. But it is a smart use of the event.)
Provide open ends that allow others to jump in or connect. Be open about your resources as well as about your problems. Resources create attention. Problems create interest. MORE IN: How To Post A Challenge