Living in big cities can sometimes feel as if you don't actually have a part in the development of the community infrastructure. We decided that something should be done to make the relationship between municipality and citizen more active by making use of the technology available.
What it does
By making use of city open data, our application allows the municipality have interactive surveys conducted through it's jurisdiction. By using a client application running on iOS phones, municipalities can set up survey questions with a simple yes or no answer. GPS technology incorporated in the phones makes it possible for the questions to be asked on users that are at the moment in close proximity of an issue that needs addressing. Application users have also the possibility to use the application to submit suggestions/complaints regarding the city administration accompanied by photographic feed back taken with their smart phones as well as GPS coordinates.
How we built it
The client application is build using Swift 3 language and Apple Inc.'s xCode, On the backend we build a rest API using Python with the Flask framework and Node.js . The database is made with MongoDB and contains data taken from the open data api of the city of San Francisco.
Challenges we ran into
Our biggest challenge for this project was working with the Swift 3 language, a tool which we were not completely familiar with, and using it to create our client application for the system. When we made the decision to make the client application for iOS devices we took into account multiple factors such as our comfort level in using the technology as well as ease of use. In the end we made an informed decision which favored our solution.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
For this project our biggest satisfaction comes from the fact that our application is a full stack application. We developed a MongoDB with Node.js scripts for data gathering; a python coded api interaction with our server; iOS client applications for end users to have a pleasant experience; web-application coded with angular2 which is used by the service clients to manage their solution.
What we learned
We learned that simplicity is key, when considering fast initiated projects such as Urbis. For the 48 our development sprint to be successful a crucial aspect for us was to have a clearly defined API and to keep things simple and clean.
What's next for Urbis
The next step for Urbis would be to finish the iOS client application and expand a bit more the initial functionality. We aimed to fulfill a limited number of our proposed use cases so that progress could be measured properly.
CREDITS: The logo that we used for this application was Designed by Freepik