Inspiration

I noticed that there weren't a lot of apps that allowed you to carpool to and from common destinations. Whether it was going from the airport to my school or even across a couple of states to a hackathon, there was no common platform that addressed this issue. This struck me as a little odd considering how useful carpooling turns out to be.

What it does

Hitched in its very essence finds you an optimal rider/ driver based on the overlapping of paths and cost of detours. While thinking of hitched, I knew I did not want it to be a pseudo taxi service that takes you from point A to B, but make use of the fact that this wasn't a completely professional service. There are often cases when a person can be dropped enroute or just at a couple minutes detour relative to another person's trip. The algorithm used for this app makes use of that. The general threshold is that the detour shouldn't cause a delay of more than 8% of the total travelling time of the actual driver. Thus keeping these constraints in mind, and using ESRI's awesome API, this carpooling app recommends ideal drivers to people requesting a trip and then gives the drivers a chance to accept or reject a request.

How I built it

The backend is built in python. The webapp was built using HTML, CSS and Javascript. Our database is Firebase. Again a huge shoutout to the Esri API

Challenges I ran into

We had a really hard time creating the frontend for this project. This was our first time working on frontend so I learnt alot, but definitely the hard way. We also could not finish understanding how flask works with python hence we werent able to completely sync my backend code and the front end elements.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

On the other hand I'm really proud of the backend code and I will be more than happy to show you the cool extra features I added that you probably wouldn't see otherwise. I loved figuring out the ESRI API , and despite this being a hackathon I ended up writing clean and elegant code which made me really happy. Also our webpage looks dope.

What I learned

Flask is annoying. But mighty useful. Also never ever EVER think frontend is easy. I have a newfound respect.

What's next for Hitched

I would definitely love to fix the obvious kinks, but in addition to that, I would like to use the Uber and Venmo APIs to aid in splitting a ride/ allowing for virtual payments. I would also love to have a rating system for the people offering to carpool and also would love to enable messaging within the app.

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