Wanted to build something that can be used for some good. Initially our first idea was to build a panic button that would send texts asking for help to everyone nearby. We felt this idea was to off/bad, but liked the idea of using mass texting for something beneficial. After a few hours of bickering we finally settled on notyfy.
What it does:
Sends out text messages to everyone registered in a specific area, alerting them of any emergency/crime/missing person/etc. This is all done without needing an app installed on the phone. Instead, users can register and broadcast texts all online. Users can unsubscribe at any time.
How we built it
We used a combination of a Django web framework, MS azure, and twilio's sms api. Django and azure was used to build the website for users to register and send out broadcasts to specific areas. Twilio's sms api was what let us send text messages from a computer.
Challenges we ran into
-Using django. -Trying to use git. -Integrating twilio's api with the Django framework (this was brutal for us).
Accomplishments that we're proud of
-Getting the website to actually show up when you searched (never done that before). -Figuring out how to send text messages to multiple people at once using twilio's api. -Finally managing to successfully integrate django and twilio. This was HUGE!
What we learned
-How to use and integrate an api (specifically twilio's). -Learned some git and why it's so useful (still need to work on that one). -How to use web frameworks (like django). -Why django is terrible. -How python works with HTML and CSS. -Hackathons are awesome fun (we're all first-timers)
What's next for notyfy
-Integrate multimedia into texts (sending photos of criminals on the loose in the area for example) -Integrate Google maps. This would allow users to be more specific with their location -Integrate news in texts. Users can now get breaking development straight from news sources in their area