Inspiration

It's a common adage: "Why can't school teach me something useful like how to file my taxes?"

We neither claim nor deny that the statement is true, but we will tell you that TaxHax will teach you about taxes and more. If you make more than $11,000 a year, you must file your taxes. Even if you don’t, you can still do your taxes because it's a great practice! But, who enjoys taxes? Unknown to most, students can gain many benefits by filing their taxes. TaxHax offers a fun and interactive solution to the problem that is the mundane process of filing taxes and aims to help people—specifically students—understand the world of taxes better!

What it does

TaxHax is a web application and an educational quiz all about taxes and specifically targeted to students. With direct questions asking about you and links to further trusted resources, people of all experience levels can find the information specifically relevant to them about filing taxes in Canada.

How we built it

TaxHax is built using React and styling libraries such as Material-UI. We used GitHub for Version Control and GitHub pages to deploy the application.

Challenges we ran into

In terms of the idea, determining what tax information is important and how to present the information in a digestible manner was difficult. A lot of information about taxes was available to us and pinpointing the most important facts that students should be aware of was a lengthy process. Sometimes finding student-specific resources was hard—but that was one of the reasons we decided to make TaxHax in the first place. Finally, figuring out what would make learning about taxes exciting was also a challenge. We decided to proceed with an quiz—because who doesn't love quizzes?

In terms of the implementation, many of us were beginners and even first time users of javascript, React, and other applicable libraries. Understanding the program rather than copy-and-pasting code was an obstacle that needed to be overcome.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We're proud of how we experimented and learned enough React to build an entire web application from scratch. Additionally, we are proud of how we genuinely learned new things about taxes in Canada while making this project, ultimately becoming part of the group of people we wanted to help. We're also proud of how well we collaborated on the project!

What we learned

We learned about web development and the React framework. We also learned about the process and benefits of filing taxes in Canada and the differences between the how taxes are handled in different Canadian provinces and territories.

What's next for TaxHax

In the future, we would love to make TaxHax a more comprehensive resource. This may include more general information about taxes in Canada as well as more specific information for students. We would love to continue educating the rest of the Canadian population about taxes in a more exciting way. Possible improvements in the foreseeable future would be to introduce API's (e.g. CKAN) as well as TensorFlow libraries like PoseNet to add further user interaction.

Disclaimer

TaxHax is an educational tool designed to inspire students to learn about taxes and to introduce them to adulting. TaxHax does not provide legal, tax, or accounting advice. You are encouraged to consult legal, tax, or accounting professionals for personal matters.

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