We began the weekend by forming a team and getting a general idea. Once we settled on using the Spotify API to try to do some sort of user analysis or track comparison, we had to figure out how we were actually going to do that. A lot of us had Python experience, so that felt like a natural choice for the backend, but we had practically zero front-end experience. At that point, we decided to go to office hours to try to figure out how in the world we could visualize everything once we got to that point.

The first thing we wanted to try was React because it seemed like a lot of the mentors really wanted to shill for that. That worked on us for a bit and we were totally convinced we were going to learn React and somehow connect that to our Python backend. Eventually, we got a lot of our help from Sanders (for the back end) and Alex (for the front end). Sanders helped us through a lot of the initial learning process of the Spotify API and Alex spent probably two hours answering our questions about using Python Flask and Boostrap to have an integrated front end and back end framework. Not to speak for the rest of my group, but I don't think I've ever felt so overloaded with information in such a sort time span and my brain was legitimately fried by the end of that.

After sleeping on that, we immediately narrowed in on the idea we wanted and then split into our respective teams to learn more about these tools we had never used before in our lives. On the front-end end of things, we quickly realized we had no idea what were doing after looking at Tri's Figma prototype (actually zero chance we could make something as nice looking as he envisioned) and trying to copy-paste a Flask/Bootstrap tutorial. We tried office hours again and Nabeel basically gave us a crash course on using HTML and how templates were actually Flask feature and not an HTML feature. I think most of the HTML we wrote in that session ended up in our final project. For the back end, we were able to a working Flask app and an almost working json production function (I'm not really sure Rachel and Thomas they did it, most likely magic).

At this point, Jacob and I had a hard-coded HTML page and a couple of Python pieces, so we started trying to use some of the HTML Flask features to make it a bit less hard-coded. We kinda struggled through that a lot because it turns out we had the wrong file format ("psa json files arent strings" - Thomas). The three of us went to more office hours and Christina and Yugo walked us through producing something with a proper json format and using git on the command line. Also shoutout Christina for somehow getting us to do the right things completely blind and dealing with a mute (as in my mic crapped out two hours before that and screenshare hates us).

Now, we had pretty much a working project. You launch the webapp, log in to your Spotify account, and it would tell you some stats of what you share in common with the Top 50 in the US. Now, we decided to pivot and try making it compare your last month of listening to your last year of listening. I personally had been staring at a laptop screen for like 12 hours straight at this point (very illegal), so I kind of fell asleep while that happened, but I woke up and it looked great, so yeah good job team we did good. We learned a bunch about using APIs, making Flask apps, making HTML and templates, and connecting front and back end components. There's probably not much in the future of spotiFYE, but it would've been nice to get a progess bar that actually worked correctly every time and maybe add in some new modes of comparisons (but that would require front end sending information to back end which seemed too big of a scope for a weekend).


Slack Handles

[Hacker] Thomas Purcell [Hacker] Jay Srinivasan [Hacker] Rachel Li [Hacker] Jacob Nguyen [Hacker] Tri Watanasuparp

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