Hackfest2018 Kiel

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This page details the planning of Inkscape's 2018 hackfest in Kiel, Germany.

Other pages: Hackfest2018 Kiel Topics, Hackfest2018 Kiel Attendees.

Past: Hackfest2018 LGM (Sevilla), Hackfest2018 Boston, Hackfest 2017 Paris, Hackfest2016 Leeds, Hackfest2015 Toronto.

Future: Hackfest2019 SCALE, Hackfest2019 Saarbrücken

Hackfest: Kiel, Germany

Hackfest is over! We had ten people in attendance (with more participating remotely). Thanks to Maren and to "Kitz" for being such great hosts! Everyone is looking forward to future hackfests.


A hackfest! We will work on Inkscape bugs, new features, and packaging as well as website issues; in fact anything that can benefit from developers and users being physically in the same space.


Sun, 2018-09-09 until Thu, 2018-09-13

This coincides with the "Digitale Woche Kiel" (#DiWoKi, an event series organized by the town of Kiel, which aims to introduce a wider audience to IT and technology topics, running from September 8th to 15th 2018) and seamlessly blends into the event "Kieler Open Source und Linux Tage" (Kielux), the local annual Linux and Open Source conference, which officially starts on Fri, 2018-09-14 (when the room will be needed), and which might unofficially begin on Thursday with a local (preponed) edition of the Linux Presentation Day (else it's only setting up of booths and rooms on that day).

The organizers of Kielux plan to host several talks and workshops during Digitale Woche. The host (Maren) might be involved in Digitale Woche events and will also be needed for preparing Kielux, and thus might not be available full-time.


Kiel with a population of roughly 250.000 is the capital of Germany's northermost state. It is located on a bay of the Baltic Sea, which splits the city into two parts. Kiel is famous for its annual sailing regatta and festival, the 'Kieler Woche', which takes place in June, and internationally known for the Kiel Canal, which connects the North Sea and the Baltic Sea. It has one large and one smaller university and an arts academy, a botanical garden, many museums, student bars, an aquarium etc. (see tourist info website). Kiel is generally safe, with few exceptions. As Kiel is a tourism town and most Germans speak English, you will probably get along with English in most cases.

The closest international airport is Hamburg Fuhlsbüttel. From there, a bus service (Kielius) goes directly to Kiel central station.

From Scandinavia, travelling by ferry is an option. Within Germany, long-distance coaches, trains, and the BAB A7 can be used to travel to Kiel, in addition to flying to Hamburg.


The currency is Euro. Make sure to have some cash, as not all places accept Visa/Mastercard/EC card... ATM machines are widely available (one on the university campus close to the venue). They require cards with a chip and a PIN.


The hackfest will take place at the Kitz (Kieler Innovations und Technologiezentrum, a startup center renting rooms and services to newly founded businesses, located next to the city's main university campus (map).

We will have one room, R012, which is located on the ground floor of the building.


At the Kitz, there's a vending machine for small snacks and sweets, and a coffee machine that also makes soup and hot water for tea - a small selection of tea bags is available, too. Coffee in thermos jugs will be available during the official opening hours of the Kitz. Maren can bring other snacks and beverages (but would need to know which).

For lunch, there are several options.

The nearby university canteen ('Mensa I' on the map) offers filling and healthy meals at a good price to non-university members. Vegan, vegetarian, salad bar, fast food, extra cheap food, standard dishes (all < 6 Euro) are available and labelled for potential allergens. An app for Android is available on f-droid, use 'Kiel, Mensa I am Westring' to see the menu. Abbreviations for allergen ingredients are explained here.

In the vicinity, there are also a couple of fast food restaurants (mostly Turkish, and an alternative burger restaurant), a Spanish restaurant (open in the evenings), and the Traum GmbH (modern German and international food, in the evenings). Many pizza (and other food) delivery services are available from midday to late evenings in Kiel. If the weather is fine, we can also have a barbecue in front of the Kitz.

The Kitz has a new offering: it collects food orders for kiel-kantine.de. Prices are a little bit higher than for the university canteen (1,50 per dish needs to be added for delivery to the price on the list...), but the food is delivered right to the Kitz. Kitz staff says the food is good. Orders are accepted at the Kitz service desk until 10:30 a.m. for the current day, delivery is ~ 12:00.


  • No fees
  • Wireless networking
  • Wired network with high bandwidth (recommended, cables and network switch on premises)
  • Whiteboard, flip chart
  • LCD projector with VGA and HDMI (cables will be provided, if you need something else, bring an adapter)
  • Europlug type CEE 7/16, or CEE 7/4 (230V, 50Hz - make sure your devices can handle the voltage! Check which adapter you need)
  • Toilets for handicapped persons
  • Large parking lot
  • No time restrictions for hacking in the evenings
  • One large conference table with 14 chairs
  • There is enough space in the room to put in a couple additional tables and chairs, which are available
  • The conference room (R012) has a window front with blinds on one side, windows can be opened
  • For calm talks, or a change of scenery, there is a large cafeteria available, which is shared with the employees and tenants of the Kitz (but we probably cannot set up camp there permanently)
  • If we need more space, or want to have more contact to visitors, we have been offered space in the ground floor hall, directly in the center of the Kitz (even setting up a projector there might work). Usually, it's rather calm there, but during Digitale Woche, we expect more visitors. Could be a place for running tests with users (if we can move some people to come).

Public transport

Kiel has a good bus network. The closest bus stop to Kitz is 'Goetheschule', which is served by the bus lines 91/92 and 81. From there, it's a 400m walk to the Kitz. During the day, buses go every 15 minutes. A bit farther away are the 'Universität' and 'Universität/Westring' (university) bus stops, where many bus lines converge (bus route network and time table info).


The closest hotel is GHOTEL

The tourist information office's website has a booking app. Kiel being a tourism town, there are lots of hotels etc., and September isn't main season. Unfortunately, most hotels will not be very close to the venue, as it's located close to university. Around the venue, there are mostly apartment houses, mostly inhabited by students.

We might be able to find free accomodation in private households of free software enthusiasts on an individual basis in or close to Kiel (transportation will be easier for people with a car). Please send a request to Maren, if you want her to enquire.

Or Inkscapers could rent a holiday apartment together, which is probably a lot cheaper. Breakfast would need to be procured somehow, though :) (the host can help with that).

Hackfest Dinner and other events

  • Hackfest Dinner: An informal dinner will be held on Sunday, Sept. 9th, starting at 6:30 p.m. at TraumGmbH (Menu).
  • Kitz party: Participants can take part in the annual Kitz event, on the evening of Tuesday, Sept. 11th. A voluntary fee of € 10 can be paid.
  • City tour/computer museum visit: On Wednesday, Sept. 12th, at 11:20 a.m., we will get a guided tour through the computer museum. If the weather is fine, we'll meet in the morning at the central station, will then walk along the Förde to the ferry terminal, see a couple of Kiel's sights and enjoy the fresh sea air, and will take the ferry at 11:08 a.m.. The guided tour will cost 60 € plus 4.50 € per person, so ~10 € per person. A day ticket for a group of 5 for public transport in Kiel is 14 €, plus 1 € per person per ride for the ferry, so transportation will be an additional ~ 5 €.


Anybody interested in Inkscape is welcome to attend. Funding support for travel expenses is based on past contributions to Inkscape. See the Hackfest2018 Kiel Attendees page for more details.


A schedule will be developed based on input from attendees and the Inkscape community. See the Hackfest2018 Kiel Topics page for further details.