The COVID19 pandemic has given rise to quite a few unforeseen events. At the beginning of this pandemic, we faced a significant shortage in many items that are considered essential such as toilet paper and cleaning supplies. As the market currently stands, baking needs are nowhere to be found as many consumers are turning to pasty making in quarantine. You go from store to store with hopes of finding these items and no luck. Not only is this experience frustrating but also very inefficient.

What it does

With Inventory Investigator, consumers can check the inventory status of these required goods without having to go instore and blindly search. Using their location, users can view the stock of high demand items at their local grocery stores. Store owners can modify the number of items they have while customers can request particular items to restock. This program allows store owners and managers to manipulate their inventory numbers. By viewing what is in demand by the general public, these workers can curate their sales to suit present needs, making overstock less likely and reducing waste.

This program can also promote social distancing measures as consumers are checking beforehand if their desired stores carry a particular product. They can now spend less time in stores and also will not needlessly enter stores as they know if it does not carry what they need.

How it was built

  • We created a web dashboard, a mobile app and a backend to support both of these components.

    • With store owners in mind, we set up a web dashboard that monitors product demand and updates inventory values.
  • For consumers, we set up a mobile app that monitors product supply with the option of requesting specific products to be restocked.

  • Using Googleā€™s Firebase and Cloud Platform, we set up a fast, flexible, backend that works as an API to help orchestrate communication between Customers and Store Owners.

Technical Stack

For the Web dashboard, we used:

  • HTML & CSS,
  • Bootstrap,
  • React JS

For the Mobile App, we used:

  • React Native

For the Backend Framework, we used:

  • Flask,
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • FireBase
  • GitHub Pages

Our Google Cloud Services Include:

  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Google App Engine
  • FireBase
  • FireStore
  • Google Maps JavaScript API
  • Google Maps Places API
  • Google Maps for Android SDK

Challenges we ran into

  • Two of our team members being novice coders with no prior hackathon experience.
  • We all worked in environments and languages that we are new to.

Future Plans & Scalability

When expanding on this program, we plan to include a function that auto identifies what products are in demand based on social media trends. We also want to go beyond the scope of essential services like grocery markets and include other types of stores.

If our video has not finished uploading before the deadline, we will post the link in the updates section

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