May 9-10. Chennai.

Join us for Chennai’s

_ hackathon

Registrations for Save The Hacker are closed for this year. See you next year!

Not so long ago, when tech jobs weren't a commodity, people got excited about writing code. They fired up terminals, cloned repositories and went out of their way to build ideas from scratch. Google, Apple and Facebook happened. Life was awesome.

But then, somewhere along the way, the world got lost in a sea of corporate bullshit, incompetent project managers and made-up job roles. Writing awesome code didn't really matter anymore, work lives became a 9 to 5 thing and god-level geeks allowed themselves to pursue strategic mediocrity. Today, the hacker is a dying species, endangered by pointless hierarchies, outrageous dress codes, and teammates who are hell-bent on being lazy.

But wait, there's still hope.

Last year, we set out on a mission to save smart programmers from dead-end jobs by inviting them to Save the Hacker - a two-day hackathon that went on to change their lives. This year, we’re back, and we can’t wait to rescue more developers and see them build great products. So come join us in our mission, show us what you’ve got, and while at it, win some amazing prizes.

What’s your style?

Tell us what you want to build and win separate prizes for your track


At Save the Hacker, there’s something for everyone. We are giving away 50 lakhs worth of prizes for the winning teams in each track, and free goodies for every team shortlisted. So go get yourself a team, and register now!

  • ₹100,000 in cash
  • 3x Raspberry Pi 2
  • 3x Google Chromecast

  • Google Cloud - $10,000 in credits
  • Ola ₹3000 worth of free rides
  • Box - 3x Business Account for 12 months
  • Saavn - 3x Pro Account for 6 months
  • ₹50,000 in cash
  • 3x Raspberry Pi 2
  • 3x Google Chromecast

  • Google Cloud - $10,000 in credits
  • Ola ₹1500 worth of free rides
  • Box - 3x Business Account for 12 months
  • Saavn - 3x Pro Account for 6 months

Twilio - ₹30,000 for the best app built using the Twilio API

Free Goodies for everyone

  • Goodies Pack - 3x Save the Hacker Swag
  • Google Cloud - 3x $300 Credits
  • Twilio - 3x $25 Credits
  • Box - 3x 10 GB Account with Enterprise Features
  • Saavn - 3x Pro Account for one month
  • Ola  - Free rides to and from the hackathon venue

Three simple rules.


You can register a team of up to 3 people, and choose between building a web app or a mobile app. Prizes will be given separately, based on your track.


We expect teams to start building their app at the hackathon. We hope you respect the idea behind the event, and don’t use something already built.


At the end of the hackathon, you’ll be asked to do a 10 minute run-through of your app and code to a panel. The best teams will go on-stage for the live presentation.

The final evaluation will be based on the originality of your idea, the completeness of your project, and the technical challenge that went into building your app.

Freshdesk Inc.

SP Infocity, Block B, 1st floor
MGR Salai, Kandanchavadi.

Got more questions?

get answers
  • When is the last date for registration?

    We'll be closing registrations on the 1st of May. But if you have your idea ready, we recommend that you get your team registered as soon as possible. We'll start looking at entries actively as and when they arrive so that we can start shortlisting teams.

  • I have registered for the Save the Hacker. What next?

    Already registered? Good job.

    If your team gets selected, you’ll be receiving an email from us asking you to confirm your availability for the hackathon. To make sure every deserving idea gets a chance, we’ll be going through all the entries we receive to shortlist ideas.

    We’ll be looking for ideas that stand out from the pack; you get extra points for giving us a clear picture of what you want to accomplish at the hackathon. So make sure you spend some time on your idea description to let us know what you have in mind.

  • How many teams will get selected for the hackathon?

    We are looking to host around 100 teams, with up to 300 people this year.

  • Where is the hackathon taking place? How do I get there?

    Save the Hacker will be taking place at the Freshdesk office in Chennai. Our friends at Ola will be giving away free rides to participants so that you can get to the venue, and go back home stress free.

  • What if I am not from Chennai?

    If you are the kind of person who is passionate about coding, you should try to come over no matter where you are. It’ll be worth the trip. We are excited about hosting hackers from outside Chennai too!

  • What if I need to cool off during the hackathon?

    We’ve got a nap room if you are feeling really sleepy, and we’ll also be arranging beds at night. On the other hand, if you just need a break, we’ve got foosball, table tennis, mini-golf and even a gym to help you get back up to speed.

  • I totally want to come to Save the Hacker. But I won’t be able to make it :(

    Tough luck buddy. We’ll miss you. But hey, make sure you send out an email to and tell us why you would have loved to attend the event (and why you couldn’t). We’ll send you a free t-shirt, and will add you to our mailing list. That way, you can make it to the next edition of Save the Hacker.

    If you have a friend who is just as excited as you, you can always ask them to register a team.

  • What is the duration of the hackathon? How long will I have to finish?

    Your team can start coding for the hackathon at around 10 AM on Day 1, and we will ask you to stop by 12 PM on Day 2. That gives you a little over 24 hours to finish building whatever you want. After that, we’ll start panel reviews and have the final presentation in the evening.

  • Can I build anything I want?

    Yes. Save the Hacker is a completely open hackathon and we are okay with letting you build anything you want, as long as you stick to either a web app or a mobile app. We look forward to seeing teams tackling a wide range of problems and coming up with interesting solutions.

  • Can I choose to build both a web app and a mobile app?

    In the best interests of both participants and the organizers, we’ve decided to restrict teams into choosing just one of the tracks before they begin - Web or Mobile.

    We do this to ensure that there is a level playing field for all teams and so that we can compare apples and apples during the final demos. We also recommend that you build just one app (as opposed to multiple web apps or mobile apps) during the hackathon. It will be easier for you to finish, it will be easier for you to demo, do a good job and win.

  • Can I use any existing libraries?

    Yes, you can. You are free to install any libraries, frameworks or gems you need for your project and we are totally cool with you using the internet for guidance. This is a hackathon after all, and if you can do a better job by using the right tools, then we are all for it. We also advise you to get everything set up before you arrive so that you won’t lose precious hours on getting ready.

    However, all said and done, we don’t want you to have started your project before the event. During the review, if we find out that you have used something you built already, we’ll disqualify your team.

  • This will be our first hackathon. Should I be concerned?

    We understand that hackathons can be challenging, and some people will have more experience putting together an app quickly than others. But that doesn’t mean you should be afraid to take the first step.

    To make it more useful, we’ll have a host of technical leads and architects around to help you out when you are stuck. This will be the perfect opportunity for you to learn something new and get some hands-on hackathon experience.

  • Should we bring our own laptops and devices?

    Yes, please. We’ll be providing you with everything else you need for the hackathon - wifi, food, shelter and even mentorship.

  • Who owns the code for the apps?

    You do. And you get to do anything you want with it - make it open source, keep it private. If you end up creating a company out of your project from Save the Hacker, make sure you let us know so that we can give you a high five.

  • Tell me more about the panel reviews.

    There will be 100 teams at Save the Hacker. Getting all of them to demo is going to be an impossible task given the short amount of time we’ll have. To make things easier, we’ll be asking people to freeze code at noon on Day 2. After that, teams will be asked to individually present their projects to a panel of architects.

    We’ll then shortlist ten teams for each track - web and mobile - to present their work on the stage to our judges.

  • What will be the judging criteria for the final round?

    We’ll be evaluating teams based on the originality of their idea, the completeness of their project, and the technical challenge that went into building the app. Winners will be announced immediately (almost) after the final demos.

  • Are there separate prizes for both tracks?

    Yes. There will be separate first and second prizes for both tracks. You can check out what you can win in the list of prizes above. The first and second prize will be the same for both tracks.

  • Will there be free food?

    Yes. Absolutely - different kinds of free food. We’ll mix things up and make sure that you don’t get bored. We will also have beverages and munchies round the clock to make sure that you don’t get hungry. No alcohol though, sorry.

  • What about swag?

    We love swag. And we’ll be giving away free goodies to all participants who get selected for the hackathon. Our partners will be giving away their own coupons as well. All that, if you manage to just get selected. If you win, you’ll get a treasure to take back home.

  • Really? You are giving away all that for free? But why?

    Let’s just say, we like hosting awesome hackathons.

  • What if I have other questions?

    Send us an email at and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Register Now

Registrations for Save The Hacker are closed for this year. See you next year!

A shout out to our awesome sponsors