After reading a book titled "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell, we pondered on the idea that there can be inherent negative factors to minority groups while taking standardized tests: including negative, racially-charged comments. To eliminate this disparity, we created an application that would send positive affirmations to individuals to neutralize any previously toxic influences.
What it does
Quincy is an AI system that sends positive comments via SMS to a student prior to one’s exam to create an encouraging and comfortable environment. The student can schedule one’s assessments via Google calendar, which Quincy will then automatically digest and analyze. Messages will be sent based upon the schedule prior to the student’s examinations.
How we built it
We split our project into sections. One person handled machine learning, one created sample messages and wrote for presentation, another created the flask web application, and the fourth coded the functions of sending the text messages and linked APIs. After we completed our individual parts, we connected everything together and created our project.
Challenges we ran into
The team is composed of solely first year college students, and three of the four of us are first-time hackathon participants. Although this lack of experience made it difficult, we learned a lot from the the past couple days through Google searches, and constant debugging, and mentoring from our teammate, Ben Demers (THANK YOU!). Many of the challenges include setting up APIs, connecting different parts of the project, and setting up our machine learning, Quincy, to give amazing encouraging messages.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Overall, we are proud of our project. There were many parts, such as Quincy, the web app, and API set up, and we are proud of every component. For most of us, this is the first time we ventured past simple programs within a terminal. We are proud of all the knowledge and experience we gained through this project.
What we learned
We learned several languages, how to build a web flask application, and how to connect outside resources such as Twilio and Google Calendar API. We also learned that Google is extremely useful. It helped us code and taught us how to answer and solve our questions and problems.
What's next for Quincy Encourages
Quincy only sends messages to students on the day of the exam and a few minutes prior. In the future, Quincy will send texts days before the exam to encourage healthy studying and sleeping habits. Furthermore, broader categories and personalized messages based on student reflection after the assessment are in the works as well.