n. A collaborative programming session, particularly one lasting several days.

Example Citations:
Hacking Health, taking place at McGill University's Thompson House, is a health-oriented "hackathon" — an increasingly popular event where people gather to build software that addresses current needs.
—Roberto Rocha, "Tech geeks, doctors unite in hackathon at McGill," Montreal Gazette, February 23, 2012

Around 30 people came up and pitched their app ideas. Afterwards, the Developers and Designers vote for their favorites by giving the Idea Generator their poker chips. The top 5 ideas would be developed during the hackathon.
—Chiu-Ki Chan, "We Won The BeMyApp Hackathon!," Forbes, February 27, 2012

Earliest Citation:
On Sept. 12, MGM opens 'The Hackathon,' a promotion for 'Hackers' in which participants must complete three hacks, including the familiar 'Crack-the-school's-computer-to-change-your-grade' hack.
—Jeff Jensen, "Interactive media & marketing; Hackers revel in marketer hype; United Artists, GTE turn code-crackers into promotional ploy," Advertising Age, September 11, 1995


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