The inspiration behind this app was derived from our love of food and our vision to recognize the need for this app for the regualr person. All of us love food but have trouble deciding which restaurants to go to or what cuisine to try. This app, GrubSpot, eliminates the choosing aspect of eating with friends. Additionally, with its algorithm to showcase the highest rated restaurants first with plenty of reviews, users are bound to recieve top choices for restaurants and food that certainly will not disappoint.
What it does
The app utilizes geolocation and database information to assist a user in choosing the quickest path available from points A to B and additinally showcasing all the restaurants that appear on the roads you travel on so that you never wander afar from your roads. This peculiar feature allows one to eat and try sophisticated food while traveling alongside their preselected destination to save time. The app could be used to save one's time or to be enjoyed by people who yearn for a new dining experience between point A and B and have no idea where to proceed. By eliminating the choice aspect of eating out and recommending restaurants, Grubspot allows choosing to be easier and calm the anxiety of the undecisive.
How we built it
This application is built with swift, php, json, and sql so we can maintain our data, access it, and also grant directions from points A to B. Swift was utilized to design the interface of the app for iOS and everything from the app design wise was built from scratch. Php was primarily used for our backend and we coupled he language with json and sql so that we can ganar data for restaurants and their respective informaiton, recieve them in a usable form, and store them in our database. Sql is used to insert and sort through our restaurant data. We also extended our api usages from Google Maps to Yelp to future aid us on our journey and these apis allowed us to calculate distances and other crucial information.
Challenges we ran into
Challenges that we were confronted with include the integrating of the programs with the app as well as ensuring that the information we recieved from our scripts were correct data and of correct fields. Writing the programs on the computer took a while but for everythign to link up to an iPhone command really presented a challenge for us. Additionally, in the very beginning, scraping data for restaurants and working with apis were something we were not familiar with so syntax and usage gave us dilemmas. Most importantly, our algorithm for disocvering which restaurants appeared near the user and how only the ones on the same street as the user gave us significant trouble as well. Every one of our challenged either derived from math or utilizing something we were not used to doing.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We're extremely proud of the resultive app because of the clean simple design and the app's potential to really allow users to have a simpler life. The interface is super clean and well designed and we integrated the program with the app so that it works seemlessly well together. We're additionally proud of collaborating well together as a team as there were some tough scenarios for us to hurdle over. Overwall, we collaborated well and we designed a beautiful app that makes one's life easier.
What we learned
We learned a multitude of things including new computer science languages, amth, and design. We all became more familiar with php and json because of the amount of data we had to scrap from yelp. Forcing us to recieve all the data from yelp made us utilize json and php constantly, and in the end, it certainly feels like we know the two languages like the back of our hand. Moreover, every language we feel more confident coding in because of the effort we put in. Some math was implemented, and we learned about Haversine's equation and how relevant this equation is to the real world. Lastly, we all learned about app design and how to create wonderful user interfaces without confusing anyone. The team played about with different design cues, and through these design cues we were all exposed to swift and most of the functionalities of it. This project included a lot of features, and it was through these features the group was forced to use so many languages in so many different ways.
What's next for GrubSpot
Next for GrubSpot, we can further push development into other cities of the USA such as New York or LA. We can also implement options for users to choose the kind of search algorithm they want aka do they want eateries close to their starting location or their end location. More features could cater to restaurants and allow users to make reservations on the store or possibly even order food online to skip the wait at the restaurant and allows users to pick up their delicious food and contine along their way. Lastly, a real time map view of the restaurants that appear alongside a user's route would be fantastic. We ran out of time to implement it in this hackathon, but we would love to have this feature somewhere in the future.