While attending the NASA Space Apps Challenge, one challenge stood out. They requested an app that would enable delivery of beach conditions (UV index, air quality, water quality, wave height, temperature, etc.) in a more accessible way. The Amazon Alexa service seemed ideal!

What it does

You ask Alexa and she reports on the local beach conditions. We access the data from multiple trustworthy sites and consolidate it in a human-understandable message with recommendations.

How we built it

We used Node.js primarily on heroku, but also PHP during development.

Challenges we ran into

Finding reputable sources, and integrating their diverse API calls into a single script.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We built it in about 40 hours, including forming a team who hadn't met each other, and we won the "Galactic Problem Solver" award, while building something that is immediately useful.

What we learned

Plan ahead! It always comes down to time, so proper planning helps.

What's next for Sun Spot

Incorporating more data sources, and end user customization (skin type, preferred temperatures, surfer versus boater vs sun worshipper, etc.)

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