I am a very energetic person. I enjoy having new experiences and meeting new people. I wanted to be able to connect with people like myself, meet up, and try something new, like rock climbing or swing dancing. It could even be something as simple as playing racketball or playing a board game. This is what drove me to create UNiTE.
What it does
The Concept is simple, sometimes you just want to do something spontaneous, something fun. Sometimes, you just want an advanture. That's why the core feature of our app is something we call adventure mode. It's a button you turn on that says you're up for something fun, a new experience, or new people. Once you turn on adventure mode, you're presented with a live map of everyone in your area also looking to meet up. What comes next? Find them and have an adventure!
Besides showing people, our app shows locations of meet ups and other fun activities going on. Anyone can host an event through the app and anyone can attend. Meetup locations are represented by blue pins on a real time interactive map and people are green. This makes it so easy to find people to hang out with, to try new things with, and just to have fun.
How we built it
Although UNiTE relies on many web technologies, its core is rooted in Microsoft's Azure cloud computing platform. The app is hosted on a virtual machine hosted by Microsoft that continually checks for updates to the master branch of a Git repository and restarts accordingly. We chose MongoDB to persist event data, locations, and logins. By running the Mongo server on Microsoft's technology, we were able to send and receive queries reliably to please our userbase. We used technologies like Node and HTML5 to build the meat and bones of the project.
The Business Model
Our target audience is college freshmen. There are more than 20.5 million students currently enrolled in college it is being constantly replinished, a new market each year. We plan to start at UT and hope to expand to other college campuses across the nation. In terms of monetezation, we're going to utilize featured events and data analytics. Companies will be able to pay to get their events pinned at the top of the event feed and get more people to attend their event. Once the userbase grows large enough the amount of data generated by where people are and what they're interested in will be invaluable. A piece of information like a certain store has a surge of customers right before closing might incentivize them to stay open another hour and signifigantly increase profits.
The App and the Future
As the userbase grows the features will as well. We hope to add a friends list so you can prioritize events your friends are going to. We want to add pictures to give a better feel for the event, and we want to give more information to the users.
Ultimately we stand for enjoying life and people, appreciating humanity and the connections that we can make, and ultimately, that every day should be an adventure.