Say you find a fantastic ocean-side property on a realty website. You are unsure as to whether you will have to get flood or hurricane insurance, or how often damage from natural disasters will affect the property. Unfortunately, many websites do not offer such information, the way they would offer information about the crime levels and school ratings near the property. As the number of natural disasters that occur per year increases, the losses that come with them rise at high rates. We wanted to find a way to provide information about the risks of natural disasters in certain areas to home buyers. That's where Cozy comes in.

What it does

Cozy is a free chrome extension that calculates the impact of certain natural disasters on a specific property. It uses databases to inform the prospective homeowner about the chances of earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. The easy-to-understand and helpfully visual UI allows any user to make a more informed home-buying decision. Cozy allows prospective homeowners to understand the risks they may face, so they can make informed decisions about whether they should purchase a certain home, if they should invest in methods to protect their home, or if they should purchase natural disaster insurance. Current homeowners can also use this application to learn about the risks of natural disasters where they currently live, so that they can be better prepared for future disasters.

How we built it

We used JSON, HTML, and CSS to design the Chrome extension, and JavaScript to collect and analyze our data. We also used HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Bootstrap to create our website.

We started out by making a basic Google Chrome extension, while simultaneously learning how to retrieve data from APIs on the side. Later on, we merged all of our data retrieval into algorithms in our extension.

Challenges we ran into

  • We were unfamiliar with APIs and how they work
  • Initially, we did not know how to find documentation on using databases
  • We were unaware of the many differences between Chrome extensions and regular webpages

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • Integrating multiple APIs into one algorithm
  • Building a clean and simple UI
  • Working our way through multiple sticking points

What we learned

  • How to make Chrome extensions
  • How to use Javascript
  • How clients interact with servers
  • How to fluently transition between individual tasks and a group project
  • How to figure out when to ask for help, and how to ask for it

What's next for Cozy

Improvements and Additions

  • Give more detailed information about risks through the extension
  • Automatically detect property addresses on the user's open page

Future Endeavors for the Developers

  • Further exploration on using data for social good
  • Gain experience on various different platforms

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