The inspiration for this project had to do with my personal shortcomings and passions. I do my best to reduce my negative impact on our planet. It's something that means a great deal to me. Everyday I do the little things I can to help, like picking up any trash I see, using a refillable water bottle and always turning off the lights as I leave the room. One day I happened to think about my shower habits and realized I take much longer than I need to. I researched the output of most shower heads and realized I was wasting a lot of water. That gave me the idea to create this skill and maybe help others come to the same realization that I did about how much water we waste by spending those extra couple of minutes in the shower.
What it does
Shower Buddy times how long you are in the shower and uses that duration as well the average output of a shower (2.1 gal/min) to determine how much water you use. In addition to the boring quantity in gallons it will give you the equivalent as a more interesting and relatable quantity, such as cans of soda, to put into better perspective how much water you used.
How I built it
Challenges I ran into
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
I am proud of the fact that I was able to create a timer within my skill to track the shower duration. I have tried to make this skill in the past, as I had the idea a while ago. This part always tripped me up and I never finished. But for this challenge I knew my idea really fit the theme so I was determined to make it work. After a lot of research and thinking I finally did it and was overjoyed when I got it to work.
What I learned
I learned how to use a DynamoDB table with Alexa and AWS Lambda. This will prove useful in my future skills because I can now include memory persistence to create a better, more involved user experience.
What's next for Shower Buddy
Next up for Shower Buddy will be a family leaderboard to compete against members of your family for who can use the least water while in the shower. I believe people's competitive nature can be a big promotor to further conserve our resources.