Inspiration

Many news summarization apps have been released on the App Store in the past, but they all lacked something important, such as a working algorithm or a clean user interface. Some lacked brevity altogether. I took this opportunity to create a modern, sleek application which did its job well.

While I was learning about natural language processing, I found an interesting paper about ordering text by students at the University of North Texas. As a challenge, I decided to replicate this algorithm solely in Swift, Apple's latest language for iOS app development. I was delightfully surprised by the strength of Apple's built in language tokenization and parsing. I eventually decided to utilize this technology in a news app with many hand-picked sources.

What it does

Summit pulls the latest news articles from user selected feeds. Users can chose articles to view, which get summarized by our web scrapping and natural language processing algorithm. Primitive named entity recognition is used to extrapolate various information to create infographics alongside the summary.

Brief Highlights:

  • Simple and clean interface with vibrant colors
  • Universal app with native support for all iPhone and iPad devices running iOS 8 and above
  • Condense long, comprehensive, articles, into easy to digest summaries
  • Full accessibility support for Dynamic Type in iOS
  • Pre-loaded feeds of popular news for a variety of topics
  • Full 3D Touch support with Quick Actions and Peek and Pop gestures on articles
  • Save articles for later with a simple tap
  • Share articles with friends and family through social media and messaging
  • Full search support for articles
  • Beautiful infographics and maps designed to give you a gist of the article at a single glance
  • Night mode

How I built it

I used the Swift language to build the entire app. I used various classes within Apple's libraries to create a robust algorithm that could generate text summaries without an external server.

Challenges I ran into

The most difficult part of this project was designing an appropriate user interface. Through fun colors and well designed icons, I was able to piece together a professional UI with a great UX.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

Top 100 Free News Apps in over 20 Countries, including the US, UK, Australia, Canada, Portugal, and more!

"News Apps We Love" on the Apple App Store (July 6, 2016)

Featured in top websites, such as AppAdvice, Mashable, The Cyber Advocate, and many more!

CA-17 (Silicon Valley) 2017 Congressional App Challenge Winner!

What I learned

My app involved a lot of Natural Language Processing (NLP) with many new algorithms which I wasn't familiar with prior to Summit. Also, I learned to design an elegant and vivid user interface using UIKit elements.

What's next for Summit

Customizable RSS feeds and an Apple Watch app!

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