Coming into PennApps, our team knew that we wanted to make something that would make our world a better place. One of our team members has experience working in a nursing home, and saw specifically the struggles those who are visually impaired face simply living their daily lives. When we saw all the APIs and tools available for us, our idea spontaneously came together - combining the cutting-edge technology of Google Cloud and our passion to see a better tomorrow, we present to you Stellatia.
Stellatia is a name inspired from many sources. For centuries, explorers sailed through the night in uncharted seas using only the constellations plastered in the sky as their guide. Similarly, we hope our app guides the visually impaired to wherever they need to go, making their journey safe and empowering them to lead independent lives.
Our second source of name inspiration comes from our integration of Capital One's API. The first coins struck under the authority of the United States of America were called the Nova Constellatio coins. Emblazoned with an eye surrounded by stars, we felt that these coins were rife with symbolism relevant towards our app's goal. The engraving on these coins is the inspiration for our logo.
What it does
Stellatia is a navigation app for the visually impaired. Fully accessible with voice commands, Stellatia guides users to their destination, using computer vision to identify and warn users of potential hazards in their way. For the purposes of PennApps, Stellatia is specifically targeted at navigating to Capital One ATM and bank branches, using the Capital One API. It also has the added capability of identifying denominations of US currency, which can be difficult for the visually impaired.
How we built it
Stellatia is built using Android Studio. Github and Git were used for collaboration by the team members during the coding process. Google Cloud and Capital One API's are used for navigation.
Challenges we ran into
Our team found integrating the APIs into an Android Application very challenging. The integration took up far more time than anticipated, and we struggled a lot with learning how to use these APIs with no background knowledge. This app is also the first time any of the team members created an app, which meant a lot of learning and troubleshooting as we went along.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Our team prides itself in having learned how to use Android Studio over such a short period of time. Our team is also proud of how we were able to divide up tasks effectively, using Git. This meant increased efficiency and collaboration.
What we learned
We learned a lot over the course of this project. For one, all of the team members furthered their knowledge of computer science through important skills such as Android app development, API integration, and distributed version control. However, creating Stellatia also taught us to think creatively and outside of the box, ready to tackle any obstacle that came in our way.
What's next for Stellatia
As of now, Stellatia is a mere shell of its full potential. Taking Stellatia forward, we hope to fully integrate hazard avoidance into the app, as well as denomination identification. We also hope to increase accessibility and features as much as possible, making Stellatia even more voice-compatible and helpful as possible.