Now days pretty much everyone has a smart phone. However, not everyone have access to internet all the time. In first world countries, data plans are really experience. In third world countries, there may not have good infrastructure to support it. SMS is both cheap and a lot of people already using it.
What it does
People can text our number (1-867-877-0189) with require params and our server will text back with information they were looking for. For example, text "map, University of Toronto, Eaton Centre, walking", our server will sends back the route from University of Toronto to Eaton Centre. Our app uses 6 third party APIs. These includes Google Maps, dictionary, Yelp, weather forecaster, wiki, and news.
How we built it
Used Node.js for the backend with React Native for the frontend. We used Twilio to send and receive SMS. Used various third party APIs (like google map, yelp, and etc) to provide the users with the requested information.
Challenges we ran into
We ran into challenges when we tried integrate expo-sms into React Native. Programming the async functions in node.js was also a challenge to implement. Two of our teammates were first time hackathon attendees and as a result took time to get used to a competitive programming atmosphere.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Able to setup twillo with Node.js. In addition, we are able implement third party's APIs successfully especially Google map and Yelp. We also provided a user friendly interface that was simple.
What we learned
Debugging abilities as well as newfound experience in React Native, Node.js, Twillo's api and various other third party APIs.
What's next for TxtWeb
More features including a basic web search engine.