Public e-bike and scooter services like PubliBike, Tier and Lime in Zurich provide sustainable transportation solution to the open public. They have become increasingly popular and thousands of people use these services to commute in their day to day life. They can conveniently be picked up and parked at any location. But this has also caused an inconvenience for the city. Most bikes end up getting parked at the same locations like train stations, while other get parked at remote areas. At the end of the day, these e-bikes and scooters need to be manually redistributed to specific locations, which requires great human effort. We want to solve this problem by leveraging tourists. We propose a mobile travel planning app for tourists, that takes them to interesting places around the city while having them make take these e-bikes from higher-density locations to lower density locations balancing the distribution of e-bikes and scooters around the city.
What it does
Turi is a mobile application that is aimed at tourists, providing tailored city trips from any starting point. The tourist simply chooses the duration of the trip which could range from a few hours to an entire day. We then plan a multi-step tour through the city, making use of these e-bikes and scooters to commute.
How we built it
Our prototype is a mobile application on native Android which communicates with a backend written in Python. The backend uses various end points like PubliBike, TravelTime, OpenTripMap and the GoogleMaps API to find points of interest that are based on the proximity and availability of Zurich's PubliBikes to points of interests around the city.
Challenges we ran into
One of the most challenging aspects of our application was planning the optimal path. We had to infer the distribution of bikes and calculate a suitable path which is guaranteed not to match points of interest in fewer travel time.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We managed to accomplish a full working prototype which offers all of the basic functionality to be deployed as a proof of concept.
What we learned
Reading and combining multiple APIs like PubliBike, TravelTime, OpenTripMap and GoogleMaps efficiently. Team work when facing nasty bugs that we couldn't find on our own (potentially due to sever fatigue :-))
What's next for Turi
We would like to make it more entertaining for the tourist by gamifying their travel experience by providing fun and informative challenges throughout their route