Dialogic Blog

A ‘TAD’ Bit of Hustle Goes a Long Way – TADHack and Enterprise Connect 2017

by Vince Puglia

Mar 29, 2017 2:04:55 PM

I respect hustle, and in my opinion, hard work trumps talent. Gary Vee (Gary Vaynerchuk) said it best: WORK. That’s how you get it. But often the most difficult part for any venture is taking the first step and not knowing where to start.

TADHack 2017 hacking

Let me explain. I spent this past week in Orlando, first as a mentor for TADHack, then as an attendee at Enterprise Connect. I’ll start with the latter. 

Enterprise Connect is the biggest enterprise-focused real-time communications and collaboration event featuring the who’s who of the industry including Microsoft, Cisco, Amazon, and Oracle, to name a few. While it’s easy to get caught up in the glitz and glamor of the big booths, big names, and even bigger product announcements, they all started with a basic fundamental objective of solving a problem using technology. But how did they get there and where did they start?

With that in mind, let’s circle back to TADHack - TAD stands for Telecom Application Development and Hack is short for hackathon. TADHack events are held over a weekend allowing local and remote participants to use some of the industry leading communication platforms to build out their ideas with help from the sponsor mentors to win cash and prizes. It is TADHack’s mission, set by founder and organizer, Alan Quayle, which sets this event apart from the others:

Our mission is to bring together businesses, developers, non-coders… really anyone who is interested in using telecom capabilities in their applications, services, or businesses to solve local and global problems.

But there’s a perception problem – first, many consider telecom to be not cool. Well, attention code hipsters – communications is everywhere and is used in most all of the popular applications including Facebook, WhatsApp, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Secondly, somewhere along the way, hackathons obtained a reputation of being reserved only for elite developers using complex programming languages which only the hardcore can interpret, often leaving the novice developers (or non-developers) intimidated to participate. Here’s the deal. API’s are the universal language for building technology and API’s do not discriminate based on age, gender, occupation, or zip code. If you are willing to learn, then there are no boundaries. But here is my little secret: showing up is your first step.

So regardless of whether you are a graphic designer wanting to build a live recording studio or a DevOps Engineer from Minnesota wanting to help organize family and friends to help elder health needs or just someone wanting to make buddies with their burglar, you need to take the first step. It would have been easy for any one of these hackers to make an excuse not to participate. It’s the weekend. I’m not a programmer. I don't live in a tech city. But they didn't – they showed up, and stepped outside of their comfort zone eager to learn. And for that, I consider each of them respected hustlers.

The next event is TADHack-Global which takes place in September in over 30 cities. I fully encourage anyone with an idea, wanting to learn and share ideas to participate.

Hope to see you there

//Vince

TADHack 2014: myVirtuaLesson
TADHack 2015: just-text.us

Topics: WebRTC, Communications Application Development