Around the world, nearly 40% of physical entities are inaccessible to students with disabilities -- this greatly threatens their lifestyle and independency. Hence, I wanted to create an application that would empower students with disabilities and assist them in their day-to-day life - this is where MapAbility was born.
Connection to Theme
MapAbility is entirely related to the theme of Tech4UHacks. MapAbility, by allowing people to identify, share, and converse upon inaccessible locations, helps mitigate the issue of inaccessibility and promotes accessible locations. Across the U.S alone, nearly seven million students have a disability - hence, when there are inaccessible locations, these students cannot navigate different locations and their self-sufficiency, self-respect, and indepence is threatened.
However, through MapAbility, these inaccessible locations are addressed and students with disabilities are further empowered - this is closely relevant to the theme of Tech4UHacks. Hence, by promoting social good and empowering students, MapAbility is directly connected to the theme of this hackathon.
Features + What MapAbility Does
MapAbility is a web application fostering dialogue and action on inaccessible locations, thus promoting social change and empowering students w/ disabilities. In other words, it allows people to report and discuss inaccessible locations, upon which local authorities can take action and resolve the inaccessibility. This greatly assists and empowers students with disabilities as the accessibility issues that inhibit their independence and lifestyle are now being preemptively resolved through MapAbility.
One of the biggest challenges we ran into was ensuring the proper implementation of a location-based service -- using a geolocation API, MapAbility was able to address this issue.
In addition, we wanted to find a way to allow for people to report the accessibility of roads and sidewalks, which students with disabilities often use. Our initial approach didn't allow for this but we soon added a new feature (seen in the video) which allows for this!