Photo Hack Day 4 Recap: 300+ developers and 68 apps in less than 24 hours


On April 6-7th 2013, Aviary brought the Photo Hack Day love back to the west coast at the beautiful Facebook Headquarters in Menlo Park with help from our amazing sponsors: Facebook, Walgreens, AMD, Shutterstock, Windows 8,, Dropbox, GettyImages,, Fujifilm, Chute, ImageShack, FlashFoto, Sincerely, Foursquare, Tumblr, 500px, EyeEm, Imgur, Imagga, IQEngines and TokBox as well as our design sponsors Macadamian, Monkey Republic Design, Method, and Yeti.

In just 24 hours, more than 300 developers and designers teamed up to create over 63 amazing web and mobile apps! The event kicked off with API presentations from our sponsors. From there teams quickly formed and hackers were off to the races!


At 6pm we were joined by this year’s speakers for an incredible panel on “The Future of Mobile Photography.” Brett Wayn (Flickr), Jack Levin (ImageShack), Flo Meissner (EyeEm), Liyan Chang (, and moderator Avi Muchnick (Aviary) regaled us with well-earned insights on the future of photo apps and talked about the trials and tribulations of building a business around this burgeoning industry.

The panel was followed by a taco bar from and beer supplied by Strike Brewery a la API sponsor FlashFoto. Facebook generously allowed us to stay overnight, and let me tell you, walking around Facebook HQ at 2am was a humbling experience. Thanks again to our energy drink and hydration sponsors, Red Bull, Guayaki Yerba Mate, and Zico.

Caffeine taken care of, we organized a game of late-night developer trivia to keep the troops motivated. Accepting the first correct response on twitter, we gave away 20 prizes thoughtfully donated by Mosaic and Joby. Pro-tip: Twitter feeds are eventually-consistent, so if you’re counting on the “first response” for anything, you’ll have some ‘splaining to do. We had more than enough prizes though, so most participants walked away with something. This is definitely something we’ll be bringing back at PHD5.

When noon rolled around on Sunday, we had over 63 mobile and web apps submitted and ready to demo! After a lunch break and a brief campus tour by our favorite Facebooker, Bear Douglas, we all piled into the demo area and watched in awe as the attendees took a mere 2 minutes to walk us through some of the best, most polished apps we’ve seen to date!


Hacks were judged based on technical accomplishment, cleverness, originality, and the overall real-world value of the application.

And now...the winners!

##1st Place: ($5,000)##

Team: Mohamed Mansour, Joey Hiller, Ray Spaddy, Justin Ormont, Jeremy Benaim

*This service functions as a very photo-centric version of Google Maps, although it’s powered by Bing Maps. Users can enter their initial and final destination and will display photos from Getty Images and other sources to give you a more visual experience.*

##2nd Place: Snapsplosion ($2,500)##

Team: Jesse Ditson, Keith Axline

*Snapsplosion is an iPhone app that makes it fun & easy to make photo mosaics from your photos - Take a picture, and snapsplosion finds thousands of photos near where you are and creates a beautiful mosaic from your photo.*

##3rd Place: iMaze ($1,000)##

Team: Boris Suska, Zbynek Nedoma, Jimmy Liu, Zuhayeer Musa, Danish Shaik

*iMaze is an innovative web application that allows people to take an image and create a maze in which users are immersed within a virtual maze experience. The game has two modes: one in which the user can take on the maze by themselves and the other in which the user can compete against each other in a neck-to-neck battle of intellect and endurance.*

##Crowd Favorite: Cardified ($1,500)##

Team: Yang Shun Tay, Joe Chee, Soedar Lim, Benedict Chan, Bang Hui Lim

*Cardified creates invitation cards with customized text and photos automatically from your Facebook graph. For each friend, we automatically search for photos with the two of you and create a pretty invitation card that is addressed to them.*


Thanks again to our esteemed judges, Ken Yeung (TheNextWeb), Drew Olanoff (TechCrunch), Kristina Shen (Bessemer Venture Partners), Eric Kim (Maverick Capital), and Brent Baisley (Shutterstock) for making the hard decisions and whittling the hacks down to 3!  We had a ton of amazing submissions, so this wasn’t an easy task. In fact, the judges were so impressed, that they listed a slew of honorary mentions.

- Moma2.0 by Yuriy Dybskiy: *Museum of Modern Art 2.0: Support artists on a whole new level.* - Musaic by Ming Fu, Puran Singh, Jacob Jennings, and Karen Fojas Lee: *Musaic is the hottest new way bring your images to life through sound. Just swipe and tap across any image to make magical new music.* - Billie by Arel Cordero, Huy Nguyen and Jack Culpepper: *Billie takes the pain out of paying in groups by doing the hard work for you.* - Big Gallery by Tony Casparro: *BigGallery is a Wordpress plugin that allows you to easily search, select, purchase, and upload royalty-free photos directly into your blog posts. Integrating with both the Shutterstock and Bigstock APIs, BigGallery brings the world pictures directly to your content creation platform.* - Johnny 5 by Conor Buckley: *Voice controlled image editing.* - PrePost by Archie Archiebong: *Simple, yet effective, PrePost allows you to compare untouched photos with an edited photo by simply touching the screen.* - Rebus by Mike Mignano, Andrew Rudmann, Michael Vitrano and Nir Zicherman: *A word is worth a thousand pictures. Rebus transforms yours into a shareable piece of art.* - Charity Stock by Gaurav Sharma, Chris Hermanowicz and Gregarious Narain: *Allows users to donate their photos to charity. All purchases for use are distributed across your favorite charities.*

For a full list of the submitted hacks, check out the Submitted Hacks List, or head over to the HackerLeague page for the event.

For more photos from #PHD4, check out the Flickr tag #PHD4, or search your favorite social network for the #PHD4 tag.  We’ll be adding some of our favorites to the Photo Hack Day Facebook page.

Here are some more fantastic write ups by PHD4 Judges and Sponsors: Judge Ken Yeung, TheNextWeb, Judge Drew Olanoff, Techcrunch, Walgreens, EyeEm, IQEngines, Chute, Monkey Republic Design.

We had an amazing time at PHD4. Hope to see you all at PHD5!


The Aviary team

PS - If you're itching to get hacking this weekend, make sure to find us representing Aviary at the International Space Apps Challenge at AlleyNYC, or find an event in your own city!