A couple of years back, I met a homeless lady in Baltimore. It was 25 degrees outside and she had nothing more than a thin windbreaker and t-shirt on. I took the change that we got from the parking and gave it to her, telling her to go and buy a hot drink and some warmer clothes. The look on her face was of great happiness and something that to this day, I have not forgotten. I would love for all people who are having troubles be able to be this happy and to not be hurt by the weather and their lack of resources.
What it does
City Samaritans is a system that allows any homeless or poor person to request basic provisions, like fruits and clothes. Then, people who can provide these resources and find people who need things in their area and buy or donate them to the local store in which the homeless or needy person requested the product, through an easy to use web interface.
How we built it
We built the hardware using a Dragonboard 410C to request the products. Then, using Google's Speech to Text engine, we convert it to text and send that data to our Flask server. The Flask Server then parses the data and sends it to the Elasticsearch database, both of which are hosted on Google Cloud Console's Computer Engine servers. Using SQL authentication, the users can log in and see what products people in their area need and then check off the project that they needed.
Challenges we ran into
Learning how to use the Elasticsearch Database was a great challenge and also, it was very difficult to work with the Dragonboard, especially since it did not have a mic, something that was essential to this project.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are proud of the fact that we were able to figure out an idea and work together really well to complete our idea. Additionally, we learned a lot of new platforms like Flask and Elasticsearch database and learned how to do integration across many different platforms properly.
What we learned
We learned how to use Flask, Elasticsearch database, Google Cloud Console, Dragonboard Serial Connections, Ajax templating and speech to text APIs.
What's next for City Samaritans
We plan on polishing our app and adding security to the overall data storage methods. Then, we would like to work with local stores to put the City Samaritan devices in their stores so that this can become a very viable product in many different large cities, where there are large populations of homeless people and needy people who would benefit from this product.
Table Number is 70 Members: Colin Galen, Ayush Varshney, Kevin Xu, Sujay Swain