The inspiration behind Balik Kampung is based on the term 'Kampung Spirit'. Human beings are social creatures that are happier and better when connected with others. Hence, based on what 'Kampung Spirit' offers at its core, we aim to provide a platform to bring the Kampung Spirit to all Singaporeans no matter where they are.
We want to lower the social barrier when it comes to transitioning into a new country. We believe that forming meaningful relationships play a vital role in one’s well-being. Through research, we found out that conversing and making meaningful connections with people of the same background, culture and values is significantly easier than those of a different one.
By providing a platform for Singaporeans to communicate with one another, we create an initial launch pad to allow users to form relationships in and out of the Singaporean community. We strive to make it easier to participate in social interactions with other Singaporeans overseas through common interests , lowering the barrier of initial social interaction. Together with a holistic support system that takes care of essential emergency information and their well-being through qualified therapists for their mental health wellness.
What it does
The mobile application allows Singaporeans that are overseas to stay in touch with Singapore by providing them with the latest government updates at their fingertips, along with emergency hotlines for the users’ safety and well-being. The app creates a community of Singaporeans overseas by bringing them together based on interests, which lowers the social interaction barrier.
We believe that every Singaporean is a foodie and that nothing brings people together like good food. Therefore, we allow users to share, review and comment on their favourite food stalls. This creates an avenue for a community curated list of food stalls moderated by Singaporeans for Singaporeans.
How we built it
Using Flutter as the frontend and Supabase as a backend service, we manage to complete a basic working prototype. Ensuring that the UI elements are rendered dynamically by data from the database, we ensure less application updates will be required and that the app is able to scale well.
Using the tools available in Figma, we first created a low fidelity prototype by having each team member asynchronously dish out various low fidelity prototypes to have a brief overview on how the app we want to create should look like. After various discussions, we were able to narrow down to what content we want our app to have and how it should behave. From there, we then created a high fidelity prototype to help simulate user interaction with our app, this helps us to better understand the problems the user might run into while using our app. Then, we improved and finalised our prototype design.
Challenges we ran into
Structuring the tables on the postgreSQL database took quite a bit of work to ensure scalability. Filtering out key MVP features was also difficult as every feature seemed important at the start.
Using Figma as beginners was quite a challenge. While the User Interface for Figma was user friendly, it had a steep learning curve as well. Furthermore, it was tough for us to decide on a good design as we were not experienced designers as well.
We wanted to do a better quality video with little video editing skills, so as beginners we learned a lot on the staging of the animation frames as well as working around a few setbacks.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
To be able to come up with a high fidelity prototype and make it come to life with code, together with a video demo of our application within a few days is quite an accomplishment for all of us.
What we learned
We learned various prototyping software skills, like Figma and Miro.
We also learned how to use Supabase with Flutter while taking technical design considerations into account like reducing application updates.
We learned how to use Sony Vegas to edit video for our video demo.
We learned how to make an app more accessible for users by taking into consideration multiple user profiles such as those with dyslexia and colour blindness. By introducing dyslexia friendly fonts, a colour blind friendly colour palette, and the ability for users to change font sizes.
What's next for Balik Kampung
We hope to finish the MVP and launch the application quickly to get user feedback immediately. We have multiple features in the pipeline but user feedback will be the most important to filter out what our users actually need and want.