Coming into this hackathon we were open to a lot of ideas, we just wanted to find an API and do something cool. Then we came across Delta's team. Their suggestion to come up with a solution to ease the everyday traveler's stress was a pretty interesting challenge, and their API caught our eye. Traveling usually consists of a lot of tedious processes that cause frustrations for everyone, young and old. We were inspired to create a way that would help travelers estimate the amount of time it would take for them to get from their home to their terminal. For the next 36 ours we hacked away at our Sinatra project and came out with a lightweight web app called Flight Time.
What it does
Flight Time takes in your flight number, your location, and the date of departure, and spits back out the optimal time for you to leave your home. This way you won't be waiting hours in the terminal after getting their too early, and you won't miss your flight because you underestimated the length of the TSA lines. It will also give you a breakdown of each step of your journey including your drive over, your estimated wait time in the TSA line, and your departure time. All bundled within a simple and friendly UI.
How we built it
We used the Delta API to get flight information and TSA wait times based on the flight number. We also used calls to the Google Distance matrix API to calculate the distance between your submitted location and the airport from the information we submitted earlier.
Challenges we ran into
Designing with the user in mind when it came to the kind of languages we used to communicate different kinds of information. We hadn't had a lot of experience with the languages we used until this hackathon so we had to learn and use it effectively. A lot of the API calls were a bit hard to navigate so it took time to lock that in. And of course bug fixing kept us from sleep in the last few hours.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Just learning all of the things we did in 36 hours. We learn something in every aspect of development including front-end and back-end. We can definitely say that we learned some invaluable things that we will definitely use in the future.
What we learned
We used APIs that we've never used before, and all of us were using languages and technologies we weren't entirely familiar with. The whole development cycle was a learning process.
What's next for Flight-Time
We hope to add more options for the user such as more commute options and a checklists of tasks to do that could factor into the estimated time. We would also like to receive feedback so that we could create a more accurate estimation over time.
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