Our inspiration for this hack was due to our own experiences facing discrimination due to religion (including islamophobia), ethnicity, and gender. Each one of us on this team has faced some sort of stereotypes and discrimination. We were inspired to create PeaceBot because we wanted to show that people that they are not alone, as well as educate individuals about the harmful impacts of being discriminatory. In this hack, we focused on Islamophobia.

What it does

Peace/Hate is a bot (also called PeaceBot) that works similar to an autocorrect feature. Currently, the main function of the bot is to detect Islamophobic phrases when individuals are tweeting or typing on platforms, such as Twitter. Before posting or sending a message, the individual receives a pop-up notification asking if they’re sure they want to continue with the post/message. If they choose to go through with it, the bot would then allow others and the user themselves to be notified that the post is Islamophobic in nature and would allow them to be directed to factual evidence on our website.

How we built it

We built PeaceBot through different languages and software. The bot was built through the Twitter API, Notepad++, and Windows 10 Powershell. The bot is able to scan certain phrases and send out notifications to the user letting them know that what they have said is Islamophobic.

We used Nicepage to create the website for Peace/Hate that we would have the bot redirect to for more information regarding how to not be Islamophobic, solutions, and how to become an ally.

We also used Inkscape to create our logo designs for the hack.

Challenges we ran into

A challenge we ran into was creating the Twitter API. In the beginning, we were unable to do it and were starting to think of different ways to bring about our idea. Our ideas were to either create an extension similar to a Chrome Extension or a feature similar to autocorrect that automatically sends a notification as a word is typed. However, thanks to the mentors at Technica, we were able to gain useful information that helped us to try again. This time we tried to make a new Twitter developer account and used already made JavaScript codes to run our bot. Another challenge we ran into was the bot not sending out a notification due to a 401 (authorization) error. However, we were able to solve this problem by looking at the Twitter API's settings and changing our control keys.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We are so proud of everything we have created for this Technica. From the beautiful logo to the amazing website and Twitterbot to our great concept mockups. This hackathon has been full of challenges and excitement. We were able to create a functioning bot and website within the limited amount of time we had to educate users on Islamophobia.

We are also proud of one another. We all met just a couple days ago through Technica and this is our first Hackathon and first Technica, so to see our idea flourish for the first ever Hackathon each of us has participated in is quite refreshing.

What we learned

We have learned the importance of collaboration, asking for help, and time management. Through our collaboration, we were able to get Peace/Hate started and finalized by the end of this hackathon. We also learned how important it is to ask for help since the mentors played a significant role in allowing us to conduct our hack. Finally, time management was the most important; we all had scheduling difficulties, due to all living in different time zones, but managed to find times where we could zoom together and collaborate.

Through our hack, we became more educated on discrimination and Islamophobia. We feel better equipped to being allies and educating others. We have also strengthened our language and software skills, whether it be JavaScript, HTML, or design.

What's next for Peace Over Hate

We have several things planned for Peace Over Hate.In the future, our plan is to take PeaceBot and make it accessible through different platforms: google extensions, add-ons, Twitter, Reddit, WhatsApp, Instagram, and other social media platforms where Islamophobia is prevalent. We also hope to create EducateBot (EduBot) and AdvocateBot (AdvoBot) --two subfeatures of PeaceBot-- that would respectively educate individuals on islamophobia, sexism, racism, and advocating for solutions to social problems caused by them. In regards to the website, we plan to add information on how to identify and prevent islamophobic content, along with how to be an ally against Islamophobia. We then would like to increase our range to do the same for sexism, racism, xenophobia, and colorism.

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