Hacky Hour

Drop in and say hello


Hacky Hour is a relaxed, informal weekly meetup where researchers (staff or students) from all disciplines can drop in to work on their research problems related to code, data, or digital tools in a friendly environment. Alongside your peers, there will be knowledgeable staff from the Research Technology Services team to help you with your questions.  You will even get the chance to meet other researchers working on cool projects.

Find us every Thursday at Penny Lane Cafe (Morven Brown, UNSW) from 3 till 4pm.

In addition to our weekly Hacky Hour meet up we host a ResTech Seminar Series the last Thursday of every month. See below for our scheduled talks for 2019.

Why Go to Hacky Hour?

Here are some reasons:

  • You want someone to show you the basics in Excel, Python, R or some other code.
  • You want to know the best way to visualise your data (e.g. map spatial data).
  • You need some help to share, store or manage that large (or small), highly sensitive (or not) dataset from a colleague (somewhere in this universe) and want to know the best way to do it.
  • Or you just want to hang out with like-minded people, share your knowledge and help someone else.

I’m Interested.  How Do I Get Involved?

Just show up! If you have a laptop or tablet, you might want to bring it along.

If you have any specific questions, just drop us a message beforehand and we’ll try to arrange some help for you on the day. We’re also happy to run specific sessions for your faculty, school or centre.

Looking forward to seeing you there!


We also take part in the yearly Research Bazaar (ResBaz): a three day hands-on research digital literacy festival run by, and for, the Sydney basin. This year ResBaz Sydney will be hosted by UNSW on 10 - 13th September. More details coming soon!

For more information please click on this link.


Check out our list of online and formal training courses, available free of charge to all UNSW researchers, including PhD students.

Schedule for ResTech Seminar Series in 2019

All talks held at UNSW Library (F21) Room 209 from 2 till 3pm

Date Theme Presenters Slides + Materials
31st January SC18 - The most significant bits  Martin Thompson Slide pack (pdf)
28th February eNotebook: Tips and Tricks David Jung Slide pack (pdf)
28th March RSE - Overview and value to your research group Simon Yin, David Gunawan Slide pack (pdf)
25th April ANZAC Day. No ResTech Seminar.    
30th May Big Data Moves Jake Surman Slide pack (pdf)
27th June The Accidental Project Manager Ben Hatton Slide pack (pdf)
25th July AI-Empowered Biomedicine, HPC Matters Fatemeh Vafaee Slide pack (pdf)
29th August Version Control - GitHub at UNSW Duncan Smith Slide pack (pdf)
26th September Time of flight sensors and eye tracking. The NEW thing in Myopia research? Peter Wagner, David McFarlane Slide pack (pdf)
31st October Computer-aided design of materials for energy-efficient and environmentally friendly refrigeration. Claudio Cazorla Silva Slide pack (pdf)
28th November TBA Christopher Franks Slide pack (pdf)
2018 Hacky Hour Talk Slides

Find here all available presentation slides for Hacky Hour Talks given in 2018.

2018 Hacky Hour Talks Slides + Materials
Machine Learning in Material Science - Jianliang Yang Slide pack (pdf)
Optimising Matlab - John Zaitseff Slide pack (pdf) 
Using GPUs with Tensors in Matlab - Simon Yin Slide pack (pdf)
HPC Tips and Tricks - Duncan Smith Slide pack (pdf)
Machine Learning on NASA satellite images - Mark Broich Slide pack (pdf)
How can HPC and Bioinformatics help to cure infections and cancer? - Fabio Luciani Slide pack (pdf)
Deep Reinforcement Learning with Julia - Joel Mason, CSE Slide pack (pdf)
    (i) Discussion on merits of multiple dispatch, by one of Julia's co-creators Link
    (ii) Julia Observer - a good place to find Julia packages Link
    (ii) The notebook shown in the talk on the basics of using GPUs in Julia Link