HackMIT - Wifree

HackMIT was awesome … You may be asking how/why I went to HackMIT in the first place. Long story short, a friend was determined to go (he’d formed a team already) but he didn’t get invited; I, on the other hand, got lucky.

So the opening ceronomy happened. Sponsors gave 45 second pitches to encourage use of their products, and keynote speakers (Reddit cofounder, Steve Huffmanaka u/spez and Kyle Vogt of Cruise) gave insightful speeches. Then we started hacking.

Within half an hour, everyone had discovered how great MIT’s wifi was …


MIT, MIT Guest, HackMIT Wifi, eduroam, all stubbornly refused to work. The staff were even playing the dinosaur game up on the main projectors.

At the time we had little clue of our hack. What’s doable in 24 hrs? Chrome extensions, article summararisers, apps to use your phone as a trackpad, but nothing clicked. As our Wifi troubles persisted, we had an idea. Wifi! As uni (or college) students and personally having been travelling recently, access to internet is such an integral part of our lives. So what happens when we’re in a situation where we have no internet access and have no clue where to find it. Google it? Well we don’t have internet in the first place!

Our hack - Wifree - was as simple as that. Send a text message to Wifree specifying your location, and within a few seconds you’ll be replied with directions to the nearest free wifi hotspot. We even made an app that helps you obtain your GPS location and fill in the text message for you!