Photo: Ask Imogen, a Soundcloud-based Q&A hack created at the inaugural midem hack day last year

The hackers have been chosen and we’re all very excited about heading back to Cannes for the second midem hack day.

For the first time, anyone attending the conference has the opportunity to get involved by submitting ideas for things our 30-strong band of hackers might want to hack on.

Any, and all ideas, are welcomed. Try to be as forward thinking as possible but bear in mind that the hackers only have 48 hours to build. So that music distribution and royalties reporting via telepathy system you’re thinking of might be a touch too complex for one weekend, but nice idea, good on you for thinking it.

Similarly, entire ideas might not get built but there might be a spark of inspiration in one idea that kicks off the whole weekend for one group of eager hackers. That’s the beauty of hack days: you just don’t know where the idea will come from.

To stimulate idea generation I thought it would be a good idea to list a few hacks from the past year that have impressed us and done things in a different or interesting way. Hopefully checking these out will get your creative juices flowing enough to write up one (or many!) of your ideas over here at the midem hack day Call for Ideas page.


Right, enough of me. Let’s look at some hacks, shall we?



Created by Matthew Ogle, Hannah Donovan and Lyndsay Eyink at the Boston Music Hack Day in November, Drinkify matches what you’re listening to right now to the perfect alcoholic accompaniment. Co-creator Matt says that the best hacks are ones that “scratch your own itch” – good advice. When thinking about your idea, think about what music and technology problems you have personally that you would like to see solved.



Built at last year’s midem hack day, muTrumps (video demo) brought artist statistics and musical information such as beats per minute and current ‘hotness’ to a Top Trumps-style interface. The beauty here is that with so many artists to randomly select, games could go on for days and each virtual card is a potential click to buy opportunity. It even created a remix of the two artists playing against each other. Smart. I’ve heard that this gaming on mobile thing might be big…


Ask Imogen

Another great creation from last year’s midem hack day created by Eric, Johan and Katerina from Soundcloud. Ask Imogen is the epitome of ‘do one thing and do it well’. You record a question for an artist, and the artist records a response. Simple. This is a great example of direct-to-fan engagement and there must be more ways technology isn’t currently helping with this. Perhaps something around artist/fan engagement could be the basis for your idea.



Spartify helps users create Spotify party playlists and partygoers add more tracks to the playlist from their mobile phone. Too drunk to add stuff? No problem, Spartify makes recommendations based on what has played before. What else could be achieved around mobile/social music discovery?



Have you ever been out and seen or heard about an artist then forgotten their name the next morning? SndChk can help you. Tweet or text their name to SndChk and they will not only store the name but create a playlist of that artist’s most popular songs for you to jam to during your sofa-based hangover time. ‘Save for later’ applications like this and Shazam are great examples of user experiences that aid repeat usage and music discovery. How could technology like this make your hangover more tolerable?


The above are by no means a definitive list, just a few hacks I’ve enjoyed from the past year. For further inspiration that might help you form an idea to present to the hackers at midem Hack Day, I would encourage you to head to http://wiki.musichackday.org and check out the 300+ hacks created at Music Hack Days around the world.

Please also feel free to post other hacks you think are cool in the comments below.

& see you in Cannes!


Submit your hack ideas here 🙂


Martyn Davies is the founder of Six Two Productions (more on that here) and co-organises Music Hack Days worldwide with Soundcloud’s Dave Haynes.


midem hack day calendar
Click for session details & to add them to your calendar

Saturday, January 28

  • 48 hours of hacking begin
  • Music Hack Day’s Dave Haynes & Martyn Davies present the second midem hack day. They also talk about Music Hack Day and some of the amazing hacks created over the last 3 years (11.30, Innovation Factory).


Sunday, January 29

  • Hacking continues, until Monday morning


Monday, January 30

The hacks created at the midem Hack Day will be presented:

  • You can also join the “Meet the developers” session (2.30, The Hub), talk directly to the hackers from midem hack day to find out more about how they built their hacks; and further discuss what happens at Music Hack Days across the world.


About Author

James Martin

James Martin is Head of Social Media for Midem organisers Reed MIDEM. This includes defining and rolling out Midem's social media strategy, editing midemblog, influencer outreach, developing Midem's fanbase of 75,000+ music professionals and more.

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  1. Pingback: Interview: Soundcloud’s Alexander Ljung: How streaming, apps & APIs made our year | midemblog

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