We wanted to make a texting service that could be used to help people. We eventually decided to make one aimed at Rutgers students.
What it does
The bot works as a universal helper/information center for Rutgers students. For example, if someone loses their key, they can text the bot's number and it will reply with instructions and resources on how to help. The bot will also contact the RUPD non-emergency number if prompted, if the person needs to reach them but does not know how.
How we built it
We used Flask to program the app. We used the Twilio API to send and receive SMS and ngrok to host our server online. We used Chatterbot to build a simple AI that will reply to the sender based on what they say.
Challenges we ran into
We initially struggled to get our server onto the internet. We attempted to run the app through Google Cloud but even when it ran, we couldn't get it to send SMS the way we wanted. Eventually, we managed to figure out ngrok. We also ran into a few bugs in the SMS at times.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We were able to get our server up using ngrok and successfully create the texting service.
What's next for CampusChat
We would like to expand the service so it can help users more with features like maps.