What Inspired you? Building an app is always a fascinating thing. That too building an app for MTA transit system and visually challenged person, then my fascination level becomes peak.
Who is your target user? An iPhone app for visually challenged person and general users in the Newyork subway service line "L".
- using AT&T speechkit, converts speech of user into text and helps them to get right station
- listing all real time trains from GTFS
Problems we faced: Getting real time train feed from GTFS is a tedious. we spent quite amount of time on identifying how to access those feeds. we initially thought, response either be "json" or "xml" but feeds are in "Proto" format. So we took one more step, that is building a webservice.
We learnt node.js and "ProtoBuf" framework and then we created an webservice which will give Newyork transit details in JSON format.
Another Problem we faced is how blind person will use an iPhone app? VoiceOver don't have any speech input api to get user speech. so we started to look for other options
so we found AT&T speechkit and we incorporated into our app. now user will tell "Where they want to go?"
We gathered all station coordinates and computed nearest station from user current location.