Inspiration

 It started off with our want to bring a community closer together. When we think of a community, we think of our neighbors, but many of us don't even know our neighbors. They're strangers to us and it gets to a point in which we even start to distrust the very people around us, but we like to believe that there's good in people and that we are in this world to help each other. Vicinia offers a platform for neighbors to help each other out on both ends of the deal. A person can deliver goods to their neighbor and earn some extra money by doing so. So who benefits? Well the buyer benefits because they do not have to leave their home to go grocery shopping, which for some people can be extremely difficult, such as the disabled, injured, or elderly. The deliverer benefits because they can make some money, creating a source of economic stability for individuals in tough financial situations who cannot find a job. It is also appealing to college students who may need a source of income but do not have the time for a full-time job. Using Vicinia, the deliverer is able to create their own work schedule, giving them the freedom to work at their own pace. 

What it does

 Vicinia allows people to order goods from their local big retail stores, or even their local businesses, if they are partnered with Vicinia (which we plan on making very easy to do), all from their electronic device. There are limitations as to what the individual can buy, for example we do not expect Vicinia drivers to deliver a refrigerator or TV, in fact it is not an option on the app. Only goods that can be transported in a car can be delivered. Once the buyer fills up their online cart, they can choose a date and time for delivery, as well as location. Based on this information, a list of available deliverers will show up for the buyer. The buyer can then choose a deliverer from the list, this way they can know exactly who is coming to their door. In addition to seeing their picture, buyers will also be able to see reviews of their deliverers, allowing them to make a safe and smart choice. The rating system also gives incentive to the deliverer to do well so that more people will choose them in the future. Using the app the deliverer will buy only the items whose barcode matches what the buyer ordered.

How we built it

 We built a very simple prototype of the website using HTML, CSS, and Javascript. We wanted to incorporate forms and databases however we were not able to do so in time so we focused on making the website look nice and convey the message and overall feel of our company. Instead of making everything perfect we created development pages that redirected the user to the home page when they stumbled upon a page that wasn't quite finished. After all even if we had coded everything today there are always ways to improve code, so we would have had to revise it anyway. 

Challenges we ran into

 Using PHP was a challenge for us because, although we had some experience, we did not know how to insert data into a database, nor how to communicate back and forth between an HTML document and a PHP document, this was necessary because we needed to check our forms if all of the fields were filled out. Although we created all of the forms required to get started, they do not exactly lead anywhere because we do not have PHP, however we do have a structure for our database, thus moving on we know that we can easily combine what we have made so far. 

Accomplishments that we're proud of

 We are really proud of how the look of the website came out and how smooth everything runs. This is one of the prettiest websites we have ever made, so we are definitely proud of that. We are also proud of all the work we put into this. We really worked hard for these 48 hours and we worked great as a team. It was interesting to think about the business and profit side of our idea, because, although we would all like to develop apps for free, in reality that is not very possible. Every part of the developmental process costs money, so we are proud to make an app that meets the real life economic needs to make ends meet. 

What we learned

  We learned a lot about what the business structures of companies similar to our business model, which is something most do not really look into when they are at school. We're all taught to follow our dreams and take that leap of faith with our ideas, but sometimes there are similar ideas that already in place in the business world. That does not mean someone does not have an idea, it simply means that one has to work extra hard to make sure that their idea stands out and is different in a major way. In truth we are all innovators, building upon each other. These past two days we built upon our existing knowledge of code, our idea of a community-business, and the financial analysis from economic leaders in the world. 

What's next for Vicinia

 Although the hackathon is over, our development of Vicinia is not. The next step is to connect the forms to a web server that can store information and allow the user to actually use the data from the site. Besides technical development we would need more research into what it takes to have a partnership with big brand retailers and small local businesses so that we can further plan out our business process. 
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