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A way for communities to invest in their future

CashYou is a mobile web application that encourages groups of people to invest jointly in the stock market. We hope that this site will enable a more financially diverse population to engage in the financial community.

What it does

CashYou allows users to invest small amounts of money in groups moderated by financial professionals and other community members, thus allowing these groups to control larger portions of any given stock than an individual would be able to. As a result, the group members have a larger say in where their money goes, and a larger influence on the companies they invest in.

CashYou also provides the tools necessary for financial novices to get a head start in the confusing world of investment. Through the friendly environment that CashYou promotes, we encourage collaboration and responsible financial decisions early on.

How we built it

CashYou is a mobile web application that runs on the Heroku platform. CashYou’s backend database is primarily written in Python, with a sleek frontend UI and graphical library written in CSS and Javascript.

Users are identified, tagged, and tracked using the Facebook login API, and their current groups and preferences are noted by the backend database.

The backend database queries offsite financial APIs and generates graphs depicting prior stock performance with Bokeh, allowing users and potential financial advisors to keep a close eye on the performance of stocks of interest.

Stock purchases are handled with an encrypted PayPal offsite transaction, in order to keep user’s financial details as secure as possible.

Challenges we ran into

While we were trying to implement the social aspect with Facebook API, we ran into the problem of not being able to query most of the user information because of the private policies. We eventually decided to reduce the amount of integration of Facebook API in our project and moved the user communication channel to within the application.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • Successfully coding a kickass working backend database using Python that, among other things, handles:
  • Adding, removing, and changing permissions for users
  • Secure instantiation and storage of user data
  • Automatically queries and updates current stock prices as necessary
  • Built a gorgeous front end webpage using JavaScript and CSS that is able to:
  • Interact with Facebook API and backend database
  • Provide users with easily maneuverable social and financial interface

What we learned

Lots of things!

  • How to implement and integrate the Facebook login API into a website
  • Make queries with Facebook API
  • How to use Heroku to host websites
  • How to edit finicky CSS files
  • Javascript
  • How to to make graphs with Bokeh
  • It’s actually pretty easy to set up a PayPal account
  • Caffeinated chocolate bars are a wonderful invention

What's next for CashYou

  • Building the forum: we ran out of time and couldn’t implement a blog
  • More detailed account management system (two factor verification and user preference tracking)
  • More payment options
  • More integration with social media APIs
  • Stock market data analytics (neural networks)
  • Recommendation for investment based on previous post and trend among friends
  • Venture capital funding (eventually)
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