Facebook throws an open source hackathon


Facebook’s Boston-area outpost is in Cambridge, close to MIT – they’ve just expanded from a smaller site and annexed a whole floor of a well-kept office building near Kendall Square Station. The first thing you see when you get off the elevator is a floor-to-ceiling pattern of blue lines that are meant to spell out the words “Ship Love” (Facebook’s unofficial motto) in binary.

It’s an airy, open-plan space, like many major tech company offices, with exposed concrete and pipes here and there, along with original art on the walls and the requisite amusements – in this case, a couple of Oculus Rifts, some musical instruments and a foosball table.

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Last Friday, the space played host to an open source hackathon around the theme of GraphQL, a sophisticated data-fetching query language originally developed by Facebook to help manage its vast stores of user data and released to the open source community in 2015.

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