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Hack Dibner

A technology and design competition

Rules and Requirements


  1. The contest will require 5 teams submitting a written proposal to take place.

  2. Contestant projects must demonstrate that they will improve some aspect of user experience within the library by enhancing an existing technology or by introducing a new technology. 

  3. While addressing the library’s needs, when applicable, designs must consider the aesthetics of the library.

  4. Proposals should include estimates of development timelines, development costs, on going costs after implementation.

  5. No more than 25% of the proposal should involve library staffing and none of the budget may be spent on staffing (i.e. a staff member’s duties may be shifted slightly according to the proposed design, but no new staff member may be hired).

  6. Students will be allowed to perform non-intrusive tests within the library at any time but must conduct any intrusive tests during the allotted testing times and with permission of the librarians.

  7. Past participants are allowed to compete again but must propose a new concept (prior year's pitches cannot be reused).


  • All groups will be required to submit 3 deliverables by the deadline put forth in the timeline.  These deliverables are:

    • Initial Concept – A brief explanation of your team initial design concept.  

      • This concept will not be used in judging and can be changed during the course of the competition. It will be used so the Library can offer insights to each group during the development phase of the contest.

    • Written Proposal – A detailed outline of your groups' design idea.

      • The proposal must explain your idea, give a preliminary estimate of the budget, and discuss how your plan will address the design challenge. This proposal will be used to determine if your group becomes a finalist.

    • Oral Presentation – Each group will present their design idea to the panel of judges.  
      • The format of the presentation is up to the group, but it must be 5-15 minutes in length and it must include at least one visual component (models, design mock-up, 3D visualization, …).


Ownership of any ideas developed in this competition will remain with the developing team, subject to the terms and conditions of the contest and NYU Policy.  (The library reserves the right to use any design concepts or devices developed in this competition in any future redesign or remodeling of the library)