• team members have known people who have survived and died from heart attacks and cardiac arrest
    • family members & friends who have experienced it
    • when someone dies, you wonder if there's anything you could've done to prevent it
    • why aren't AEDs as accessible as fire extinguishers? one saves buildings, but the other saves lives
  • have had first aid training so we are well aware of how crucial time can be when it comes to survival
  • Marketplace documentary about the lack of accessible AEDs in public spaces & their importance
  • AEDs are very easy to use and don't require any training at all, unlike CPR

What it does

Problem: When someone experiences cardiac arrest, their chances of survival decrease by up to 10% with every passing minute. After 12 minutes, their chances of survival are less than 5%. With an AED, their chances of surviving are increased by 75%. In order to be effective, they have to be within 100 metres of the scene of a cardiac arrest.

However, many places that do have AEDs don't have them in an accessible location or do not have them registeredPrecious minutes are wasted with hidden/inaccessible AEDs, and if an AED is not registered, the police cannot direct someone to its location. They may waste time getting a AED from somewhere further. When every second counts, this pointless waste could mean life or death.

Moreover, many people are not aware that they should register their AED with Emergency Services. If they are, they don't know how to go about it.

Finally, there is some misinformation and confusion about what heart attacks and cardiac arrests actually are. They are two different things. The symptoms for women are often less known and actually different from those of men. Knowledge is power, and knowing you are experiencing a heart attack or cardiac arrest is the first step to saving yourself.

Goals: To create better access to AEDs in an emergency, educate people about heart attacks and cardiac arrest, and make it easier for people to register their AED.

What the app does:

  • Finds the location of nearby AEDs, displays them on a map
  • Spreads awareness about the symptoms of heart attack & cardiac arrest
    • Better prepares people for crisis situations

How we built it

  • using Swift for iOS applications
  • Mapkit framework
  • conversion from address to geocode to pinpoint locations
  • with blood and tears, it was too cold for sweat

Challenges we ran into

  • None of us have used Swift previously (didn't understand a lot of syntax, had to constantly Google terms)
  • difficult to troubleshoot because there was so much we didn't know
  • We tried Google API at first but because Macs can't read file paths with spaces we had to switch to Mapkit

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • all original images & icons, created on the fly (other than the map)
  • user-friendly, sleek interface + good branding
  • building an app with a completely new language (when none of us have ever done iOS development or made an app)
  • staying determined throughout it all!!

What we learned

  • division of labour and teamwork
  • dived into a new programming language & the world of app development
  • breaking down a big problem into smaller parts that we can fix
  • working on a tight deadline
  • how to ignore the perpetual threat of falling asleep

What's next for First AED

  • fine-tune the map display, different colours for the pins so it's clearer where you are and where the AEDs are
  • locate closest AED and give directions to it, note how accessible it is
  • link it to a database of AED locations
  • back-end development for registering your AED
  • more information

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