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  • 2009-04-07: Both Galois and Microsoft Research are willing to sponsor the event. We will try to use the money to cover some of the food.
  • 2009-02-11: The date has been picked.


If you will be attending, please register. The number of attendees may be limited, depending on availability of space or other resources.


  • April 17-19 2009

In general, the rooms will be open for hacking each day at 10:00 am. Each night, we should try to leave around 10:00 pm. Alas, we are not allowed to stay in the room all night

If sufficiently many participants are already around on April 16 or are still around on April 20, a small symposium and/or an excursion could be organized.


The building's facade
This is the Minnaert building, which is easier to spot. The BBL is right behind it, where the arrow points to.

Buys Ballot Laboratorium (BBL) at Utrecht University. Room numbers: 426 on Friday, 415 on Saturday and Sunday.

Getting to Utrecht


  • Schiphol
    Schiphol Airport (AMS) is the main airport of the Netherlands. There is a train station right underneath the airport, and every 15min there is a direct train to Utrecht.
  • Eindhoven
    The airport in Eindhoven (EIN) is cheaper than Schiphol, so many low-cost airlines fly there. There is a bus terminal outside the airport which will take you to Eindhoven station.


  • International trains (UK, France, Belgium, Germany)
  • National trains
    • General information
      NS is the main public transport railway company in the Netherlands. You can buy tickets on machines at the station (you can also practice this online). Maestro Debit cards are usually accepted and credit cards should work too, but in practice I've seen many people having trouble with this.
      If you pay with cash you have to go the counter, where you'll be charged extra for the ticket.

    • From Schiphol, trains depart to Utrecht every 15min. The ticket price is €7,80 (second class, full-fare, one-way). The trip takes about 30min.

    • From Eindhoven Airport, first you have to take bus 401 to Eindhoven station. There is a ticket machine inside the bus but you will need (Euro) coins to pay. Then from Eindhoven station you can take the train to Utrecht. There are trains every 15min to Utrecht Centraal. The ticket price is €12,80 (second class, full-fare, one-way). The trip takes about 50min.

  • Arriving at Utrecht Central
    Outside the train station in Utrecht is the main bus station. From there you can take buses number 11, 12 or 12S to the University. The trip takes about 20min and takes 3 'strippen'.


  • Pier "Hoek van Hollland"
    From Hoek van Holland you can take the train to Rotterdam (Centraal), and from there to Utrecht. The train station is located just next to the pier. The trip takes about 1h20 and costs €13.30 (second class, full-fare, one-way). You don't need to buy any ticket in Rotterdam, you can just buy a ticket from Hoek van Holland to Utrecht.

Transportation in Utrecht

  • Public transportation
    • To travel by bus, tramway or metro in the Netherlands, you're advised to buy your ticket in advance. This ticket is called a 'strippenkaart'. Strippenkaarten of 15 or 45 strips are available for €7.30 and €21.60 respectively, and one trip on the bus within a city (including all transfers within 60 minutes) is usually 2 or 3 strips of the card. Most places within the city center of Utrecht are one zone away from the zone where Utrecht University is located, hence you use 3 strippen for this trip.
    • Typically you enter the bus through the front door and tell the driver where you want to go. He then stamps the appropriate number of stripes from your strippenkaart. However, in some cases the bus driver might open all the doors and assume people will stamp the tickets themselves (this will typically happen for buses 11 and 12 during rush hour). You can then use the yellow (or nowadays grey) stamp machines inside the bus or at the station just before you depart.
    • Buying tickets on the bus is far more expensive. You can get these multiple-strip-/zone-tickets-card(s) in many places, including bus stations, post offices, cigar/magazine shops and some supermarkets (at the service desk or from a vending machine). You can use it also for multiple-party travel for yourself and other persons at the same time. You can read more about the strippenkaart in the ov-info website.
  • By bike
    • Biking is a very convenient way of traveling inside a city in the Netherlands. In particular, the way from Utrecht central station to the University is mostly through separate bike lanes and takes about 20 minutes. You can rent a bike from one of 3 bike parking areas at the station. The daily fee is €6.50 and you have to pay a deposit of €60 and show proof of identity (either driver's license or passport). (Note that these are not "OV-fiets"---those require a yearly subscription.) These places are open from 5am to 2am, every day of the week.
    • Make sure to obey traffic lights for bikes as being fined for not doing so is very common. You should also have your front and rear lights on when biking during nighttime (a rented bike will most probably have these in working condition). Also be careful where you park your bike and always lock it securely, since bike theft is very common in the Netherlands.

Getting to the BBL

There are two main bus lines that connect Utrecht city center to the University campus at the Uithof (pronounced something like OUT-hof): 11 and 12. Both depart from Utrecht Central Station, but then follow different routes to the campus.

To know which line is more suitable to you, you can use 9292ov. Insert as departing point the address of your hotel and as destination Princetonplein 5, Utrecht. You will then be told the bus stop and bus number that you can take. Depending on where you are staying, it could also be that the best bus is not 11 nor 12: in that case simply follow the advice of the website.

If you are coming with bus number 11, you should leave at bus stop "Botanische Tuinen" (Botanical Gardens). If you are coming with bus number 12, you should leave at bus stop "Padualaan". From either bus stop you will easily spot the Minnaert building. If you walk towards it, you will notice there are small circular metal plates on the floor forming a path into the building. On Friday you can simply follow this path: it will take you into the building and across the internal bridge to the BBL, leaving you at the stairs where you can walk up. Alternatively you can walk along the corridor and you will find the elevators. During the weekend the Minnaert building will be closed, so you cannot follow this path. But by then it should be relatively easy for you to figure out how to walk around it on the outside and access the BBL from its front entrance.

If you find yourself outside the building and cannot get in (which is likely to happen during the weekend or Friday evening), just call one of the two contact phone numbers under Hac5#Contact. Someone will come to open the door for you. You can also use these numbers in case you get lost or have any other problem. If you leave at the wrong bus stop, do not worry. In case you left before the correct bus stop, you can either walk along the bus route (if you were just one stop earlier) or wait for another bus to come (typically they are frequent). Your ticket will still be valid because it’s valid for one hour from the time it’s stamped.

In case you left after the correct bus stop, you will probably still be inside the University campus, since both the 11 and the 12 bus lines end at the University Hospital. You’ll just have to walk a bit back and find your way to the BBL.

There's also a pdf map of the campus.


It's not always easy to find loads of choice in accommodation in Utrecht. In particular, the Hackathon weekend coincides with a record fair. So you should try to make your room reservation as soon as possible. You can have a look at hotels.nl.

Another possibility is to stay in Amsterdam. The train to Utrecht takes 30 minutes and runs all night. Here are two search engines for hotels and hostels in Amsterdam.

If you have any doubts about any place, for instance about how easy it is to reach the University from there, just ask the organizers.


There is also an annotated Google Map with important locations.


What to bring

  • A laptop
  • Wireless card if necessary. There will be wireless network access. Ethernet access will probably not be available. If you really need ethernet access, please contact the organizers.
  • Power adapters if necessary. Power sockets in the Netherlands are 220-240V CEE 7/4 (a.k.a. "Schuko").
  • Mobile phone

Before you arrive

  • Pick out a couple of projects to work on and familiarise yourself with them
  • Install an up to date Haskell toolchain (preferrably ghc-6.10.1).


For any questions or emergencies, you can always call Pedro (+31 650459029) or Chris (+31 628887656).