Tāmaki Makaurau

Terrible Ideas happen everywhere:
from pottery to programming.

Alright, let’s do this one last time. The Terrible Ideas Hackathon returns for a second time in 2023 to Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland! Come join us for a weekend of frenetic hacking at the University of Auckland’s Maker Space.

This is a challenge to create the most terrible, awful, brilliant ideas you can think of! From robot-driven tattoo guns and soleless Jandals to vegemite flavoured fudge and the world’s most professionally bad D&D module, join us in a celebration of failure, creativity, and stupid, terrible decisions.

Brought to you by:

Red Bull NZ
Parallel Aotearoa

Terrible Ideas Hackathon is a two-day adventure in creating strange things


We won’t be open overnight, so we encourage you make arrangements to get home. We’d strongly recommend public transport where possible, as you’ll likely be quite tired!


  • 5:45 pm – Sign-in desk opens
  • 6:00 pm – Pre-hack gathering. If this is your first Hackathon, this is for you!
  • 6:30 pm – Welcome presentation & official kick-off
  • 7:00 pm – Team-forming
  • 10:30 pm – Venue closes for the night


  • 8:00 am – Venue opens
  • 10:00 am – Morning announcements, makerspace opens
  • 12:20 pm – Surprise Challenge
  • 10:30 pm – Venue closes


  • 9:00 am – Venue opens
  • 12:00 pm – Final check-in
  • 3:00 pm – Recommended time to submit
  • 4:00 pm – Deadline for submissions! Dinner, makerspace closes
  • 6:30 pm – Pack up & closing

You’re welcome to stay for as much or as little as you’d like (no need to arrive or leave when we open &  close), but we recommend sticking around for the show & tell if you can. You will need to make your own arrangements for transport home on Friday and Saturday nights, as we’re unable to provide a space to sleep overnight.

The Maker Space’s hours are from Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:30 pm, and Sunday: 9:00 am – 4:30 pm.

If there is anything specific you’d like to use for your project feel free to bring it in! This could include laptops, art supplies, desktop PCs, tools, or electronics! Multi plugs and extension cords could be useful too!

WHEN: 8th to 10th of December. 

The hackathon lasts for 46 hours starting on Friday 8th December at 6pm.

“Pens-down” is Sunday 10th December 4pm. There will be a chance to showcase work and a closing ceremony too!

The event space will be closed overnight Friday and Saturday. We’re not THAT hardcore!

WHY: Because, just because

Physical Hacks & The Maker Space

What’s available in the Maker Space?

The following equipment will be available to use on Saturday and Sunday. Free materials are provided, but if you’d like to make something big (or if the specific material you’re looking for is unavailable) you’re welcome to bring your own. You can read more about the space here.

  • Laser Cutter
  • Soldering/Desoldering Stations
  • Mobile Photo Studio
  • 3d Printer
  • 3d Scanner
  • Vinyl Cutter (Stickers & T-Shirts)
  • Sewing Station
  • Vacuum Former
  • CNC Router (wood, plastics)
How can I use the Maker Space?

If you’re a current University of Auckland Staff or Student, use the link above to complete the induction and do some trainings! Otherwise, we’ll have CT’s available to help you design and create your projects. Either way, you’ll be able to use the space with our help.

The Maker Space’s hours are:

  • Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:30 pm
  • Sunday: 9:00 am – 4:30 pm