For most of the members in our group, the upcoming federal election is the first that we are eligible to vote in. We all wish to exercise our democratic right to vote, but the current political landscape is even more complicated than usual. Realizing that we shared these struggles, our group ventured to build a tool that would help guide us and any other Canadians trying to make an educated vote.
What it does
The main aspect of the project is a quiz. The quiz consists of 20 statements related to current Canadian political issues (i.e "Canada’s anti-hate speech laws infringe on free speech rights") and the participant chooses how much they agree with each statement. The quiz calculates the distance from the user to each party, and tells the user who their views align with the most.
How we built it
Challenges we ran into
This project idea was based upon finding a solution to our group's collective lack of knowledge about current Canadian politics. Therefore, forming good questions with correct party stances required a lot of research. In politics, there are hardly black and white answers- instead, there is a great deal of gray space and subjectivity.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
The quiz could not just be a simple multiple choice quiz with one answer for each party. The viewpoints of the major parties fall on a spectrum, and they differ from topic to topic. With this in mind, we conceived a formula that calculates the overall distance from the user's choices to the theoretical responses of each party, and uses this to compute the viewpoint similarity percentage. The fact that we were able to take a complicated topic like politics and create an objective formula to produce accurate results is definitely an accomplishment we are proud of.
What we learned
We definitely learned a lot about Canadian politics. We also learned a lot about working together and creating a project in a completely remote setting. Knowing how to effectively use resources like Git and Slack make the process a lot more manageable.
What's next for Election Quiz
Hopefully, the website can be expanded to be more informative. While the election is tomorrow, the quiz can still serve as a great entry point to the Canadian political space. Whether you are looking to vote, become a member of a party, or just want to prepare for an inevitable family dinner debate, Election Quiz can help.