This was inspired by the introduction of mandatory smart meters by water companies across the UK. Although they can help to reduce water wastage by detecting leaks early, and give the customer greater visibility and control over their water usage, many people worry about how that data will be used. So we though, why not make Big Data work for the customer in a more concrete way?

What it does

By using the data collected from a smart water meter, we can create a water-reduction action plan for the customer based on their water usage. We take their monthly water usage and habits and give them the option to reduce a certain number of wasteful behaviours, and show them the ultimate money and water savings they would make if they were to follow through with this plan. The plan can be customised by the user themselves, to give them more control over what they do and how.

How we built it

We started with the idea of saving water as it is one of the most crucial natural resources. After some thought we decided to use smart water meter data to help people decide how to reduce their water usage and save money. As we are a team of different technical skilled women - frontend and backend developers and testers - we decided to create a website using javascript for the frontend and springboot (java) for the backend. Ideally we would have been able to create an API that connects the front end to the smart water meter, but instead we used data from the frontend to inform the backend calculations.

Challenges we ran into

  1. As it was a broad concept we had to decide how to reduce the scope.
  2. Finding all the data required to make an informed prototype.
  3. As we are all in different areas, working remotely and separately was challenging (especially with time zones).

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  1. We realised that we are skilled enough to build a prototype working app in a short span of time given the right team.
  2. It helped widen how we think and solve problems.

What we learned

  1. How to make a decision quickly.
  2. Time boxing , Time management
  3. Collaborative working with the new people
  4. Quick resolution of issues/queries through effective communication

What's next for Water Wallet

The short term Adding more ways to save water with more customisability for the action plan The long term Fully integrating with existing smart meters with help from the water companies so that the customer works less. All they would need to do is login to their account and look at the action plan dashboard while we use our existing statistics and data from the smart meter to calculate their usage of each appliance.

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