IDEA Hacks 2024

Jan 12-14

Ackerman Grand Ballroom

IEEE at UCLA is pleased to present the tenth anniversary of IDEA Hacks, the premier hardware-focused hackathon on the West Coast. Hosted by IEEE’s Student Branch at UCLA for 36 hours this upcoming January 12-14, 2024, it provides hundreds of students from both UCLA and local community colleges with the opportunity to develop their own tangible products. Throughout the experience, IEEE provides parts, tools, space, food, and workshops all for free, so all students can focus solely on their projects.

This year will be the tenth anniversary of IDEA Hacks, and the theme “Celebrating Our Communities” will encourage students from all backgrounds to embrace their unique backgrounds and create something that will improve or benefit their communities, surroundings, and environments.

The three sub-categories Sustainability, Accessibility, and “Go Touch Grass” aim to promote the creation of projects that will benefit the health of the planet, improve usability, or share the enjoyment of life. More information on these subcategories can be found here.

Everything you need throughout the weekend, from parts to food to knowledge, will all be right at your fingertips. Communication and announcements will happen through a Discord server we will set up for the hackathon.


  • Grand Prize:

    GIGABYTE M27Q 27" 170Hz 1440P -KVM Gaming Monitor
  • Second Place:

    Electric Gooseneck Kettle, Pour Over Coffee Maker, 16 oz Carter Move Travel Mug
  • Third Place:

    JBL Flip 6 Portable Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker
  • Accessibility Track Prize:

    Luna 20 LB Weighted Blanket and Comfort Spa Backrest Pillow
  • Sustainability Track Prize:

    Bonsai Tree Kit and Hydroponic Indoor Herb Garden Kit with LED Grow Light
  • “Go Touch Grass” Track Prize:

    Camping Hammock, 80”x 80” 3-Layer Waterproof Outdoor Blanket, and White Stainless Steel 24oz HydroFlask
  • Patient Safety Tech Prize:

    $500 (split between members)

    In order to be eligible to win the patient safety prize, your innovation must align with one of the following five leading patient safety challenges facing health care across the continuum of care: Medication errors, procedural/surgical errors, errors during routine patient care (e.g. pressure ulcers, blood clots, falls), infections and diagnostic safety.

    The winning team will represent the most innovative, impactful, viable idea that clearly understands the problem identified.


Friday, January 12th

Event Time / Location
Patient Safety Workshop 6:00 pm - 6:45 pm Ackerman Union 2412
Check In 4:30 pm - 8:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Webdev Workshop 5:00 pm - 5:45 PM Ackerman Union 2408
3D Printing Workshop 6:00 pm - 6:45 pm Ackerman Union 2408
Team Building Workshop 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Opening Presentation 8:30 pm - 9:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Team Registration Closes 8:40 pm Register your team
Hacking Begins 9:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Microcontroller Workshop 9:15 pm - 10:00 pm Ackerman Union 2408
Wireless Connectivity Workshop 10:15 pm - 11:00 pm Ackerman Union 2408

Saturday, January 13th

Event Time / Location
Breakfast 8:00 am - 10:00 am Ackerman Grand Ballroom
High Speed Data Acquisition, an introduction with Red Pitaya and Infineon 10:00 am - 11:00 am Ackerman Union 2412
Screen Printing Workshop 11:00 am - 12:00 pm Ackerman Union 2408
Lunch 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Optiver Workshop 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm Ackerman Union 2408
Game Music Ensemble Performance 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Dinner 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Bruin Chamber Musicians Performance 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom

Sunday, January 14th

Event Time / Location
Breakfast 7:00 am - 9:00 am Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Project Submission Due 9:00 am Submit your project
Hacking Ends 9:00 am Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Round 1 Judging 9:15 am - 10:45 am Ackerman Union 2408, 2410, 2412
Judging Finals 11:00 am - 12:30 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom
Awards and Closing 12:40 pm - 1:00 pm Ackerman Grand Ballroom

Frequently asked questions

Who can attend?

All students interested are encouraged to apply regardless of your major or experience level! And although most participants end up being UCLA engineering students, we would love to welcome participants from any major and those outside the Bruin community :)

What if I don't have a team?

You are free to hack alone, but doing it with a team makes it all the more fun! We encourage everyone to be on teams of around 4-5 hackers. Not only will this make it more enjoyable, but more equipment will be available for your use.

What tools and hardware will be provided for my team?

If you would like to see a specific part or device at the hackathon, you can specify so on your application and we'll do our best to accommodate! You can also view a full list of available parts on our Parts page closer to the start of the hackathon. We will also provide soldering stations, 3D printers, and laser cutters for you to use on your projects.

How do I contact IDEA Hacks?

Email us at! If you have feedback on the website please reach out at


Northrop Grumman
Texas Instruments
Patient Safety Technology

Interested in sponsoring IDEA Hacks? Check out our sponsorship brochure!