We constantly use campus resources, but are we as efficient as possible with our choices? We follow the same routine parking in the same places, following the same paths, never looking for better ways to do things due to the lack of ready information regarding the campus and its features. We decided we could change the campus for the better by optimizing the way students and faculty can request and view information for all aspects of campus life.

What it does

Comet Query is an all-inclusive, one-stop shop for all things UTD. Free to all students, simply add the Comet Query skill to your Echo device and go! Our skill makes it simple and convenient to find information such as: where you should park for class, where certain types of parking spot types are located, dining hours, and much more.

How we built it

Comet Query is built entirely in NodeJS and the Amazon Alexa Developer Portal.

Challenges we ran into

Neither of us had any experience working with the Amazon API and Alexa functionality, it was a steep learning curve to begin the process and add custom functionality. Multiple times along the way we ran into JSON parsing issues that took lengthy debugging to resolve.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

This is my second Hackathon and Mariya's first! With this being both of our first time to complete and demo a project! We are incredibly proud of work over the past 24 hours and all of the skills we gained.

What we learned

The biggest thing we learned was working with the Amazon Alexa API, I had some experience personally with Node.JS, but for both of us, it was an uphill climb to tackle the Alexa API.

What's next for Comet Query

There are tons of features to be added! In the future, we plan to add functionality predicting where you should park depending on your class schedule, add computer lab usage information, information regarding campus-wide events, and information for all departments on campus. We plan to continue this project into the future, submitting to the Amazon Hackathon with a polished full campus integrated Alexa skill.

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