Garage48 Defence Makeathon

When 28- 30 September, 2018

Where Tartu, Estonia

  • Overview
  • Agenda
  • Get Ready
  • Garage48 Defence Makeathon – don’t miss out on the opportunity to innovate the defence sector

    Historically, the defence industry has led the way in research and development with industrial, commercial, and general public interests benefiting as various innovations become available to the rest of the world.

    But this September, The Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Estonia, The Estonian National Defence College, The Estonian Defence Industry Association and Garage48 will give you a chance to INNOVATE and BUILD  a new line of defence for Estonia and Europe!

    Garage48 Defence Makeathon is here to bring together like-minded professionals from the defence, IT, electronics and engineering sectors, to pick their brains and come up with whole new solutions to tackle the challenges of defence in the 21st century. What can be a daunting task alone, could be easily done together!

    The aim of the hackathon

    The hackathon will help bring together engineers and specialists from the defence sector, connecting them with students, developers, engineers and other experts from the civilian field in order to raise the awareness and knowledge about this specific, mysterious, but critically important field. We hope to attract new and ambitious talent and to develop innovative product concepts which could one day help defend our country.

    Garage48 Defence Hackathon is a perfect place for Baltics and Scandinavian military and defence schools to mix and mingle, share their expertise with civil experts and students and find new ways to cooperate in the future.

    How to bring the ideas to life?

    Since the event is hardware oriented and specific tools or materials might be needed by teams to finish their prototypes, all teams are required to submit their ideas two weeks before the event kicks off. This deadline gives Garage48 Organizing Team enough time to shop and gather all the necessary tools and materials needed to bring your prototype to life! Garage48 Team will get in touch with you a month prior the hackathon.


    - Defence-field experts, active military

    - Developers (front-end, back-end etc)

    - Designers (product designers, artists, architects, UI/UX etc)

    - Hardware specialists and engineers(mechanics, electronics, 3D printing etc)

    - Team leaders, visionaries and business minds - someone who is passionate and driven, with good project management and/or leader skills but is afraid to register as defence-expert :) 

    - Cyber Security enthusiasts


    Warm meals three times a day, snacks and coffee to keep you going, wifi, tools and equipment to build hardware prototypes – everything is available at the venue.

    Don’t miss out Garage48 Defence Makeathon!

    This is a UNIQUE opportunity, so secure your spot, because tickets are selling out FAST. Let’s come together and innovate the whole defence sector!



    Garage48 Defence Makeathon is organized in cooperation with The Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Estonia and Estonian Defence Industry Association, which is why all the accepted participants must agree with the mandatory background check.

    Therefore, registration is open until 1st of September for non-Estonian citizens and until 17th of September for Estonian citizens.

    For the updates, please, follow the FB event. All information about the available datasets, your daily dose of Defence Innovation inspiration, mentors introduction and many more!


    Friday, 28th of September

    17:30 - Check-in, networking, coffee, snacks

    18:15 - Opening remarks

    18:45 - Presentation of ideas  

    20:30 - Team formation

    22:00 - Team work begins!

    Saturday, 29th of September

    09:00 - Coffee & light breakfast. Development continues

    10:00 - Checkpoint #1

    11:30 - Mentors go around

    13:00 - Lunch

    13:45 - Product development

    17:00 - Pitch training (theory)

    18:00 - Checkpoint #2

    19:00 - Dinner

    19:45 - Product development continues

    Sunday, 30th of September

    08:00 - Coffee & light breakfast. Development continues

    09:00 - Checkpoint #3

    10:30 - Pitch drill #1

    13:00 - Lunch

    13:30 - Pitch drill #2 with demo

    17:00 - Coffee break with light meal/snacks

    17:30 - Final Pitches

    20:00 - Winners & networking

    All the changes in the schedule are sent to the SLACK group (for participants and mentors)


    Garage 48 Defence Makeathon is one of the first defence oriented hackathons in the area, with an emphasis on developing hardware solutions and prototypes. To provide you all the necessary hardware, we need to know, what's your idea about. 
    For that, please contact us - let us know what do you need for building your prototype - 3d printer, magnets, different wires, other stuff we can't even think of at the moment? Please, write us in advance, so we have time to order some hardware we might not find from Estonia. 
    Secondly, as this is a defence-oriented event, we need you to register in advance for background check! So don't leave it to the last minute this time! 


    Positive attitude, an open mind and lots of energy! Also, everything you need for a rapid product development. We will have equipment and materials on site, but to be sure, we recommend you to bring your own stuff as well. You never know when you need something yourself or if you could help out another team. Sharing is caring :) 

    The fact is that, if you build something what really works on Sunday evening, then we will not ask the bits and pieces back - you don't have to break your prototype, the team can take it home and continue working on it. This does not apply, though, to more expensive things - you can not take an oscilloscope with you or set of tweezers etc. 

    But like with any other hackathon and makeathon, please take your:

    • laptop
    • 3-5m power extension cord (as power might be on distance),
    • mobile phone
    • all chargers
    • if you have your own hardware things - bring them along. 


    We will provide some floor room at the venue for accommodation - so take your mattress and sleeping bag with you. There's also a SAUNA, so you might want to get your sauna equipment (ok, a towel should be enough)! 

    We'll start on Friday at 17:30 with opening doors. Please come on time, as the registration process might take some time - use it to get to know the crowd and to network. See the agenda for further information. And bring your ID with you!


    Consider following key points:

    - Describe briefly your background (10 sec)

    - What is the name of the idea (5 sec)

    - What's the idea all about? What is the problem your idea solves? Target user count and description (30 sec)

    - Technical solution and if there is a revenue model (in case of non-profit idea, how the maintenance and further development costs will be covered?) (30 sec)

    - Minimum viable product and plan for 48 hours. Who do you need for the team? (20 sec)

    NB! Practice your pitch to your friends or family before you present! 90 seconds goes really fast!


    After pitching is over, we will put all the ideas on the wall. Every participant will choose their favorite idea and this is how teams will be formed. Usually, 14 to 16 best ideas will get enough interested people to get the "green light" for the implementation. The average team has about 4 to 7 people and the team should be "balanced" - covering all required roles like necessary engineers, a designer, and an expert in order to get the product/service ready in 48 hours! The minimum size for a team is 4 people and max is 9 people. If some ideas get too few people or not balanced teams (probably unable to build the product), the idea will be dumped. But don’t worry, just choose another idea/team to join.


    After forming the teams, organizers will give a room/space for every team for the weekend. You should start by dividing roles, setting the product vision, customer journey and start working right away.

    It is very important that you have a project manager (team lead) in the team - one of the tasks is to keep the focus of the team, one eye on the clock and the other on the team progress. 48 hours is really a short time.


    We provide breakfast, lunch and dinner on Saturday and Sunday. So, you could focus on work and building your product. There will also be snacks available! 


    We have arranged mentors to work with the teams throughout the weekend. Some of them are more technical, some more business savvy. Be open and ask for their advice and contacts.

    Please wear your name badge during the whole event, except when working with power tools and machines, this will help to encourage networking and gets you inside through security guards. Otherwise be open, get to know new people, share your ideas and give ideas/feedback to other teams.

    MOST IMPORTANT - have fun!



    The Mentors 

    Priit Salumaa
    CEO & Founder at Better Medicine
    Jaanus Sakkis
    Creative Director and Founder at Feks Design
    Kieren Lovell
    Head of CERT (TalTech) & Incident Response Lecturer (Defence Academy of the UK)
    Marek Kiisa
    Managing Partner at Superangel
    Uku Särekanno
    Deputy Director General of the Information System Authority
    Martin Jõesaar
    Estonian Defence Forces
    Rait Arro
    Product  Manager at ETHR
    Jaak Tarien
    Director of the Tallinn-based NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence
    Andrus Padar
    Head of Technology Department of Estonian Information System Authority and Volunteer of Estonian Cyber Defence League
    Martin Verrev
    Creative Engineer at Littlebit and lecturer at TalTech
    Calum Cameron
    CEO of DP Innovation Labs and Edasi Labs
    Tauri Tuubel
    Co-founder & CTO at Defendec
    Indrek Rebane
    CTO at Hedgehog Electronics Engineering
    Sten Allik
    PhD student, Department of Warfare, Finnish National Defence College
    Jaanus Jagomägi
    UI / UX Designer at Vaim
    Romet Tagobert
    Senior Software Engineer at Twilio
    Pirjo Jha
     Senior Legal Counsel at VAIMO
    Karl-Eerik Unt
    Eesti Arsenal
    Jens Haug
    Eesti Arsenal
    Veiko Dieves
    Kaitseväe Ühendatud Õppeasutused


    Liis Linn
    Project Manager at Garage48
    Renita Nõgu
    Intern at Garage48
    Indrek Rebane
    CTO @ Hedgehog Electronics Engineering
    Valdek Laur
    Innovation and Development Coordinator at Estonian Defence Industry Association
    Rene Rumberg
    Seasoned marketing professional 
    Ucha Vekua
    Event Producer, Volunteer Coordinator @Garage48

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