We were inspired by our own encounters with family members and loved ones suffering from Alzheimer's. Catherine's grandmother used to have a very close and personal relationship with her until she began to have symptoms of dementia and could no longer recognize her children, let alone her grandchildren.
It was really difficult for Catherine and her family to see such a loved and amazing woman gradually lose her ability to interact with people and do the things she loved.
For this hackathon, our group decided to create something to combat Alzheimer's because we saw how drastically it changes a person's life firsthand. We also wanted to address the Accessibility track of the Tech Takes on Mental Health hackathon to increase awareness and create resources for caretakers and Alzheimer's victims.
What it does
NeuroBoost is both an app and website that provides helpful resources for people involved in the Alzheimer's fight.
The website is made up of three tabs: the Homepage, Edu Resources page, and the Quiz page.
The Homepage provides information on the NeuroBoost mission along with some basic information on what the Alzheimer's disease really is. We also include the names of the NeuroBoost team at the bottom of the page.
Next, the Edu Resources page gives additional ways to help ensure a person with Alzheimer's is living comfortably by providing a list of things caretakers can do to help. Then, we also created a small group of links to trusted and reliable external organizations people can take advantage of to look for more information.
Finally, the Quiz page gives an opportunity for users to test their knowledge on the Alzheimer's disease in an educational four-question quiz that addresses common misconceptions. At the end of the quiz, you can see how well you did by clicking the Submit button.
The app is also a big part of NeuroBoost which includes a homepage, memory game and a recall center.
The homagepage is a place for the user to easily navigate between different features.
The memory game is an easy-to-play card game where the user tries to remember matching sets of cards. The memory game can be used to enhance and improve the memory of Alzheimer's patients. Studies show that doing daily puzzles both boost memory and make it easier for patients to perform daily tasks.
Finally, the recall center function works as a contact list where the user can keep a record of different people and who they are. Since a major symptom of Alzheimer's is the inability to recognize people and faces, our recall center can act as a reminder of who certain people are. The recall center can also be used to help practice memorizing faces.
How I built it
The website was built in the repl.it IDE using HTML/CSS/JS. The website's styling and structure was built with HTML and CSS and we relied on JS to create the quiz functionality.
The app was built in Android Studio using Kotlin.
We later combined the app and website together into a single website so people could access both components easily.
Challenges I ran into
The biggest challenge was creating the app because most of us were new to the Kotlin language. We spent a lot of time experimenting and researching the language to ensure we were comfortable with all the commands and syntax style.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We are really proud of our product's potential to be used in the real world and all the diverse features NeuroBoost offers. Both the website and app truly complement each other and have a very positive user experience because of the layout and color schemes.
Overall, we are proud of NeuroBoost because it solves a real issue that isn't discussed nearly enough.
What I learned
We learned a lot about the Alzheimer's disease and programming as well.
In terms of the disease itself, we realized that Alzheimer's doesn't just affect memory and facial recognition contrary to popular belief. Alzheimer's disease has other effects on the brain that can impair vision or result in depression.
This new information gave us a better grasp on what Alzheimer's disease really is and what it entails.
In terms of programming, we learned a lot of about app development. Before this event, our team had more experience with web development so we learned a lot about the Kotlin language. We also noticed that Kotlin had similar characteristics to HTML/CSS so it wasn't as hard to pick up as we had expected.
What's next for NeuroBoost
In the future, we hope to keep adding more features such as a simulation of what it is like to live with Alzheimer's to provide more awareness about the disease. We were also discussing a potential improvement by adding levels to the memory game.
Here's our slide presentation: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1PA5IobC4v7-FhIukYoh7Y6zdIgw2I-1navtN-MyWr4s/edit?usp=sharing