Having no access to the internet for a considerable duration of the hackathon inspired us to explore a means of receiving information on the web via SMS.
What it does
Stat.us incorporates Twilio's cloud communication capabilities through SMS messaging and gathers data about current worldwide trending topics or any custom search on Twitter's public platform, delivering top tweets to the user in real time, without the need for the user to be connected to the internet.
How we built it
We registered a phone number on Twilio that the user is able to text to receive information about a trending topic. This phone number connects to a computer server created using Python on the Flask framework, which relays commands and responses from the user (via Twilio) and Twitter, therefore connecting the offline user to Twitter's database.
Challenges we ran into
- Learning a new framework and making it compatible with the existing APIs as provided by Twilio and Twitter
- The life cycle of a web application
Accomplishments that we're proud of
- Completing our first web application
- Learning a new technology
- Incorporating multiple APIs in the project
What we learned
- Gained experience working with Flask
- How to interact with APIs (i.e.: pulling data etc.)
What's next for stat.us
- Improve practicality: allow users to request trending topics from a specific location