Guest blog by Alp Tilev

It's that time again! Foot thumping music, party glasses, luxurious cars… are a just a few of things that come to mind when … Oh wait sorry wrong post.

Let me try that again: Hackers, ruby on steroids, piles of awesome swag, red bull are just a few things that come to mind when we think of tech crunch Disrupt hackathon in NYC.

I can remember the excitement I felt a years ago as we lined up in front of a massive pier under the shadow of the intrepid aircraft carrier waiting in excitement for our first disrupt hackathon. Last Year, I was a search engineer at Microsoft and hackathons like Disrupt were my way to meet with startups and hackers to build cool hacks. Fast forward to today, where I am the startup evangelist for NY and get to do this for a living! As a startup evangelist for NY, I get to work with startups and developers building the next awesome apps and seeing how MSFT can help them become more successful. It doesn’t matter if you’re on android or Windows or Mac, Django or Rails, building on Heroku or Azure, as long as your hack is potentially disruptive you will get the spotlight.

Disrupt is the quintessential hackathon of the east coast where people of all backgrounds interested in technology flock for many different reasons. While, for some it's just meeting and watching awesome demos, others come to boost their products launched like group.me becoming an instant success. Others like me come to learn something new, making the next Frankenhack all while winning prizes in the process. We also have a pretty sweet hackathon survival bag lined up, that will hopefully take you through the night to a rocking demo the next day. You can grab one by visiting our workshops the day of the hackathon. Just look for the BizSpark table.

This year Microsoft BizSpark is a major sponsor for the event. For those who don’t know, Microsoft BizSpark is a Microsoft program for startups which helps startups get loads of free software and tools and even $6500 worth of hosting on azure. Together with Skydrive, Yammer, there are many sweet prizes lined for the most awesome hacks that blow our mind – which includes a Surface RT and cash prizes for the top Windows 8 and Windows Phone hacks.

Additionally we be awarding 10 runner’s up hacks on the MSFT platform (including Windows 8, Windows Phone, Yammer) $100 in cash prize.

I'll be holding office hours prior to the event around the city in GA and WeWork labs which you can book though ohours.org (http://ohours.org/officehours/35349). So if you're thinking about hacking on MS technologies you should stop by and say hi and we can get you bootstrapped with anything you might need prior to the big day.

See you there!

Get started with Windows Phone 8 – http://developer.windowsphone.com/en-us

Get started with Windows 8 - http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/apps/br229512.aspx

Keep the cash offer - http://aka.ms/KeepTheCashOffer