Our inspiration was originally to help rural farmers in someway. We know that a lot of these people do not have internet access so this presented a challenge in assisting them

What it does

It connects medical professionals who wish to provide services or products to their communities using SMS

How I built it

The app was built using a GCP Twilio server which received SMS and communicated with our MongoDB entirely Python

Challenges I ran into

The biggest challenge was the continuous broken input. We did not receive input as one clean string/array it was spread out in multiple function calls. We managed to move past this utilizing a finite state machine. We also had challenges with MongoDB atlas and we reached the conclusion that a relational database would have been better

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

Our idea is Remendium. Our goal was to create an app that allowed residents of poorer countries without internet access to have a greater ability to purchase medical services, medicine, and medical devices. Worldwide internet access has skyrocketed in the 2010s as of 11/20/2019 57% of the world's population had internet access. However, as of Feb 5, 2019, over 67% of the world’s population had SMS access. Our goal is to aid that 10% in access to medicine.

Remendium works on android, ios, windows, blackberry, and flip phones. We can make such a cross-platform application because our product runs on basic SMS. Our users communicate with our Twilio server hosted on GCP. Medical Professionals can list items after being approved and buyers can contact these medical professionals to purchase services, medicine, or medical equipment. The items are stored in MongoDB atlas and retrieved by a GCP instance. Some of the challenges we faced were the broken input that we got from the user. We used a finite state machine to keep track of where the user was in the buy/sell cycle. The NoSQL structure of MongoDB also provided challenges but craigslist was our inspiration and they use MongoDB. Conventional wisdom says that relational databases would be better but we thought mongo would lend to the flexibility we require. We also faced interpersonal problems of communication. Creating an application with any sort of concrete UI made it difficult to share progress and vision. Luckily we managed to band together to create a product that we are proud of and we think it has the ability to help people. Here is our demo

What's next for Remendium

There were several things that we wanted to implement that we could not in the scope of the hackathon. We would want recommender systems, rankings in the listings based on relevance, pure search opposed to a list by category, a web interface for sellers to manage listings, and more intelligent navigation when listing items. We would also want the app to be location focused as opposed to global either based on regions or even countries. Craigslist was our inspiration and we would want to mimic their city-based markets. We would also potentially want to add a rating system so that users can judge the quality of a seller/medical professional. Also some more obvious things like other languages and support for other currencies.

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