Curtin Cultural Makathon


Join the School of Media, Culture and Creative Arts and Curtin Library Makerspace to hack cultural datasets and heritage information.

Use government and institutional research data, gallery, library, archive and museum information as data sources. Experiment with data for a research project or proposal; create something accessible, beautiful and/or useful using craft, games, augmented or virtual reality, apps or something else: it’s up to you.

Dates: Thursday 10 November (launch at 5 pm) and Friday 11 November 2016, 9 am – 5 pm.

Location: Robertson Library (Building 105), in the Lounge/Makerspace area (level 2), Curtin University, Kent Street, Bentley

Register your place: Registration is free, open to all, and can be done via our Eventbrite link


Thursday 10 November  
3.30 – 4.30 pm Pre-makathon workshop – learn about the Trove API to use data in creative ways
5 – 7 pm Makathon launch: Welcome,;data mentors speak about available dataset; teams form, discuss ideas and make team t-shirts and badges
Friday 11 November  
8.30 am – 5 pm Makathon – teams work on projects
5 – 6 pm Short presentations of projects and awarding of spot prizes
Friday 18 November Winners of $500 cash prize announced

Pre-makathon workshop Thursday 10 November, 3.30 – 4.30 pm, Curtin Library, Room 412

Kathryn Greenhill and Janice Chan will facilitate a hands-on workshop on how to use the Trove API and show some examples to inspire us on ways it can be used to visualise the data. Participants should obtain a Trove API ‘key’ prior to the workshop. You should register here.


  • $500 cash prize will be awarded to the team who produces the best overall project
  • Other cool prizes to be won!
  • (categories and judging criteria yet to be announced – watch this space!)


We are honoured to have the following people as judges:

  • Piers Higgs, Director, Gaia Resources
  • Damian Shepherd, Acting General Manager SPUR, Landgate
  • Colin Walker, Executive Director, Arts and Cultural Development, Dept of Culture and the Arts
  • Michele Willson, Head of School, Media Culture and Creative Arts, Curtin University


  • Refreshments: On Friday, tea and coffee is available all day, and a light lunch provided
  • Internet access: Guest WiFi and data points will be available
  • Access to 3D printer
  • Makerspace equipment (see our list)
  • Support from data mentors
  • 24/7 Library opening hours

Data sets

Links referred to on Thursday evening

Curtin Collections (Mentor – Mattias Liffers)

WA Cultural Collections

WA Data portal (Mentors – Keith Moss) –

Here is a great range of resources and datasets of cultural and historical datasets from across WA Government for you to use in your project or proposal.

State Library of WA (SLWA) (Mentor – Molly Tebo) –

SLWA catalogue (may also be queried through TROVE) –

WA documentary heritage collections – use ‘archival’ or ‘photograph’

SLWA datasets –

SLWA electronic resources –

WA Links –

WA Museum (WAM) (Mentor – Andrew Rowe) –

WAM collections –

WAM apps –

State Records Office of Western Australia (SROWA) –

SRO catalogue – – use ‘browse – digital objects’ for images

SRO collections –

SRO indexes –

A link to a faceted search layer for SRO and WAM collections will be made available during the event.

Australian Data and collections

CSIRO (Mentor – Sue Cook) –


Australian National Data Service (ANDS) –

Judging criteria

  • Appropriate and imaginative application of one or more sets of cultural data
  • Design elegance
  • Usability and usefulness
  • Audience engagement
  • Market potential or research community significance

How can I help?: If you would like to get involved by volunteering to assist with data or sponsoring a prize, we’d love to hear from you. Contact: Dr Lise Summers: or Dr Karen Miller:

Find out more: Curtin Cultural Makathon is funded by a MCCA strategic grant. For more details on the project contact Professor Erik Champion:

More information will be made available on this page, so please revisit!

NB: Photos will be taken on the day and may be used in reporting the event.

Tools, techniques and inspiration

Election stitchup (Gov Hack project)

Useless ways of presenting data (#Hack4DK)

VR Museum (#Hack4DK)

DiRT: Digital Research Tools

Leveraging Client-Side API and Linked Data Support OCLC Developer Network

Lifehacker Maps: Australian Ghost Towns

Creative Humanities Hack

Second Europeana Challenge 2016 – fashion

Curtin would like to pay respect to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members of our community by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which the Perth campus is located, the Whadjuk people of the Nyungar Nation; and on our Kalgoorlie campus, the Wongutha people of the North-Eastern Goldfields.