The East/West Chic team felt it was critical to address an issue troubling modern society, but our glasses were pretty empty after jumping through a couple of ideas. Not until Natalyah sipped some water from her bottle that we realized we were quite thirsty - and so the idea was born! Recently, there has been an uptick in hydration discussions as people are becoming aware that they are not drinking enough water to sustain their needs. Humans are 80% water - we felt it was crucial to help people remember that so their bodies get the proper amount of H2O they need.

What it does

The WaterFi app uses a customized notification system to alert the user when they should be drinking water. First, the user inputs some data like their weight and exercise time (per day) to help the app calculate how much water they need (it's different for everyone!). Then, the user can set up how many times a day they would like to get water notifications. Based on the settings inputted, WaterFi will send text messages to a user's phone number reminding them how much water they should drink.

How we built it

Since this was our first time developing an application, we chose to use MIT's App Inventor as our primary workspace, which utilizes block-based-coding to generate Android applications.

Challenges we ran into

When making WaterFi, we had troubles figuring out what would make the block code run. It took a lot of experimentation with the blocks, as well as getting the emulators/Android companions running. Also, time zone differences - having to think in EST and PST can get confusing sometimes.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We are proud of making a functioning app! Even though it may not have all of the features we intended it to, through trial and error we got some of the code to work. Special thanks to Sandya and Paige for making that possible! Additionally, we successfully planned out our working time based on our schedules and time zones. That way, we scheduled time to work on WaterFi and attend some really neat workshops!

What we learned

App development is not easy - but after trying it out, we figured out how MIT App Inventor works! We also realized what makes a practical idea. At the beginning, we tossed around a lot of ideas that sounded amazing but had development challenges, such as using a GPS (it would take a lot of development time). Instead, we thought about what the MIT App Inventor could do combined with a social need.

What's next for East/West Chic Android App: WaterFi

We hope to improve our app-making skills for future hackathons :)

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