At our university, we have a Facebook page where students share PDF's of textbooks through a large, unorganized spreadsheet. It works, but there have been multiple times where the textbook is difficult to find and/or is not there to begin with. We decided to take this concept and expand it beyond our university to make access to educational materials easier for all.

What it does

Broke Boy Books contains a multitude of textbooks organized by title, author, and edition. Students can search for the book they need and if found in the database, can download the PDF. If not found in the database, Broke Boy Books will display the price of said book from a few large retailers as alternative options to finding the PDF. Students can contribute back to Broke Boy Books by adding books themselves as well.

How I built it

We used Pandas to parse through Excel sheets for the data into Django database using a script. For the frontend, we mostly used HTML5 and CSS3 combined with bootstrap to give the website the appearance we wanted.

Challenges I ran into

We ran into some challenges setting up the Django framework and getting it to load our files correctly.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

Getting it to work.

What I learned

How to use Pandas, how to start a Django project from scratch, how to use Vue.

What's next for Broke Boy Books

Registering a domain for the website, finding the cheapest book option from major retailers. Getting a good frontend developer to create a nice UI.

Share this project: