We lead busy lives and we rarely have time to plan for every single weekend but we would like to do something without browsing through all websites offering deals, weather information, game schedules, movie tickets and so on. Our site is targeted to provide interesting activities to do smart automatic planing around your preferences and your budget built around idea that you should provide enough information that quick glance on screen with particular day will immediately inspire you.
What it does
Weekend planner collects your user profile that will contain information like which places around your area you like to visit, which sport team you root for, which services you use and potential places you would like to visit if the price is right along with priority of such activity. As much information as possible is collected from information you already entered (e.g. we collect your favorites bands automatically from Songkick instead of having you typing it all over). Your profile also contains where you live and maximum budget you are willing to spent for a weekend entertainment.
How we built it
We used Node.js as server-side platform to allow for quick prototyping with MongoDb as profile and preferences storage. This allows us to quickly deploy the application to Google Cloud Platform and connect the pieces; on the frontend we are using Jade to compile HTML webpage and make it look nice with Bootstrap and CSS animations. We also use Uber mobile site to allow you to quickly order a transportation to the event of your choice. Demo includes Expedia, Openweathermap, Songkick, NHL and other services integration, however it's open for extension from other services LivingSocial, Groupon, Spotify, Last.fm. It's virtually limitless!
Challenges we ran into
There are surprisingly big areas of entertainment that doesn't have public API like Movie database; we prototyped Fandango access and found out that movie play times are not published anywhere; similarly, there are very few services with open API that aggregates concerts for artists.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We think that site shows the potential already so we are proud we managed to pull something giving reasonable results in such short timeframe and we learned lots of new with web frameworks. We also feel that UI looks quite good taking into account that none of us is actually a design person :)
What we learned
Both of us are focused more on native desktop/mobile environment so we learned a lot about Node.js, templating, and current state of web frontend development in general.
What's next for Weekend Planner
We will probably continue to use it as research platform and evolve it to something that we can use at least privately.