We are students from three different Universities but there is one thing we can agree on: efficiently navigating your day is a pain.
What it does
upFoot is a nifty solution to the aforementioned problem. By monitoring the foot traffic at points of interest and updating the conditions on an Airtable, a more efficient day is only a slack command away!
How we built it
We started with an ESP8266 microcontroller and a break IR sensor. After implementing a way for the ESP to talk to the internet, namely by sending HTTP requests, we created a web service using StdLib to handle our requests and trigger updates in Airtable.
We also wrote a StdLib function to handle a slash command from Slack to return the traffic conditions at certain points of interest.
Challenges we ran into
One of the biggest challenges we faced was connecting to the Eduroam WiFI with the ESP8266. The Eduroam network uses a WPA2 Enterprise connection with PEAP. There are no native functions that allow for this, so we had to come up with a work-around.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We're pretty happy to have learned how to use build.stdlib.com and its integrations with Slack and Airtable. We found it very intuitive and as our first experience with serverless architecture, we now really look forward to exploring more. We're also pretty happy to have overcome several hardware issues/limitations with the microcontroller chip and circuit components.
What we learned
We learned how to build a complete hardware-software application. Going from soldering some leads to building functions on StdLib, we touched many different levels of tech. We're pretty excited to have been able to integrate the different components of our project.
What's next for upFoot
There are additional use cases that we want to explore. Some are serious, others less so:
- Syncing to your preferred calendar application
- Finding free bathroom stalls
- Finding free private study rooms
- Finding free parking spots
- Providing urban planners and building designers with real-world data
- Tracking attendance (people coming into and out of nighclubs, events or classes)
- Tracking if a space needs to be cleaned through foot traffic volume