As a student, we always have trouble keeping tracked of expired food items. We decided that we did not want to waste any more food and at the same time save some money so we built an app that keeps track of the information for you.
What it does
The app lets you take pictures of all your receipts and uploads the fresh foods as well as the expiry dates to a local database. If there are remaining items on the receipt they can be added manually and the expiry date is found automatically by clicking one button. Once food is nearing its expiry date the app sends a notification which tells the user which foods are expiring and in how long.
How we built it
The application is built in swift using xcode for ios devices. The database is built in mysql and hosted on an apache server using xampp. Php was used to create a RESTful API to interface with the database and pull the expiry dates for each product into the ios application. The tesseract API was used to process receipts using optical character recognition. The data was then parsed to obtain the product names, search for their expiry dates and update them in the local database.
Challenges we ran into
This was the first full scale swift app we built and it took a lot of time to learn how to build the application from scratch. We also had a lot of trouble creating our own RESTful API to interface with a locally hosted database and had a lot of problems integrating it with our swift application. The server for our database took a lot longer than expected to set up and
Accomplishments that we're proud of
With no prior experience we created our first swift application and our first RESTful API. We are extremely proud of learning how to integrate web services into a mobile application when most of our team is familiar with C and C++.
What's next for RExpiry
From the foods that are nearing their expiry date we want the user to be able to browse recipes to minimize their food waste and maximize their cost savings.