There’s a fine line between technically interesting and useful, and technically boring.
We wanted to build something that would be a real world application of the CS theory we learn in the classroom - specifically, optimization, routing, NP problems - but which would also be valuable to the general public.
Rather than reinvent the wheel, we took two APIs - a routing API by Routific and Yelp’s Place API - and create a web application that would enable a tourist/visitor to maximize his time in a city by providing an optimized route through the top attractions in a given city.
Neither of us are front-end developers so we wanted to push the envelope by shifting the focus of this app to use Angular.js. A hackathon seemed like a great time to learn how to hack in an unfamiliar language! We’re most proud of the way we’ve combined two APIs in a novel way - heck, make that three (we used Google Maps for geocoding too!) - to create something that people are actually going to use and which hackers can respect.
And to keep things interesting, we also rolled with the punches - moving away from the TripAdvisor API with not much time left - because Yelp’s API is much more mature and we think we’ve got a great shot at the prize :)