Growing up in a developing and socially conservative country like India, we have often faced mental health issues from time to time without ample lack of means and resources to redeem ourselves. We realize how critical it is to address our problems, talk about them and seek help, if necessary at the right time– correctly, clearly and comfortably. Although the general perception of mental illness has improved over the past decades, studies show that stigma against mental illness is still powerful, largely due to media stereotypes and lack of education. The Internet can truly be a game-changer in the propagation of effective mental health awareness and interventions. Music can inspire and entertain, but it also has powerful psychological effects that can improve our health and well-being. Instead of thinking of music as pure entertainment, we have considered some of the major mental benefits of incorporating music into our everyday life. Our web application rhythMind aspires to be a safe place for anyone seeking to relax and recharge their mental health after a long day of work and exhaustion through melody. You might find that you feel more motivated, happy, and relaxed as a result.
What it does
It provides a well earned respite and relief to the tired mind and soul through music and a variety of proven meditative reliefs and stress busting to anybody who is stressed out or feeling negative about something.
How we built it
We utilized various technologies ranging from animation tools, web development tools, scripting languages and various APIs to build ‘rhythMind’.
- Node.js and Express.js was used to implement the backend.
- Spotify API was integrated to retrieve and manage the Spotify catalog about artists, tracks and playlists for our web application
- Pexels API was integrated to retrieve images corresponding to the emotions displayed on our web app.
- Microsoft Azure was used to create a conversational chatbot for rhythMind. We used the Microsoft Azure Framework to create it. The bot would engage in a friendly conversation with the user helping him/her talk about his emotions and guiding them towards a calming experience by suggesting relevant songs, playlists, meditation or breathing exercise.
Challenges we ran into
- One of the major hurdles that we came across was actually broadcasting music through socket.io channels because there weren't a lot of resources available on the same, we are glad that we aced through it in the end
- It was quite a big ordeal to add animations purely with CSS and JS to the individual landscape pages and to preserve the entity of those animations even on a smaller screen, i.e., making it responsive
- Our limited to no knowledge about socket.io which was used extensively in our project
- Incorporating various APIs into our web app
- Verifying conflicting information from multiple sources
- Striking a balance between simplicity and effectiveness
- A tight time frame and lack of prior experience
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are really proud of the UI that we made in such a short amount of time, the pure CSS and JS animations hand coded into the landscape pages and the overall feel of the website. In fact, this was our first time ever working with APIs.
What we learned
The first thing that we definitely learned is that making a project overnight is as exciting a deal as it's hectic. On a technical angle, we came across multiple bugs, with some of them being mere hiccups and some, major setbacks but we did learn to persist and hence, rhythMind was born.
What's next for
There are endless possibilities for ‘rhythMind’ in terms of additional features and platforms.
- Enabling the opportunity to share blog posts by users about their personal experiences with stress, anxiety or any mental health issue and how music helped them get through it.
- Features like support groups and music therapy sessions can be incorporated.
- Augmented reality meditation workshops for our users.