Inspiration

We were frustrated by going to hackathons and conferences and having to dig through emails and shuffle through sites to figure out what was actually going on. We really just wanted the know the most important information when it was important. We also found it was really tough to find the right people to network with at these events. So we created WeeVee.

We learned that companies don't find it worth the money and time to develop a proprietary conference app. By creating an easy, quick, and customizable mobile app platform, we give event organizers a tool to better serve their customers as communication trends continue to move towards mobile.

What it does

WeeVee is a single app for all of your events and conferences. Login to the app and find your event. Once you’ve logged in, a personal WeeVee will welcome you to the conference through a guided chat interface where she’ll tell you about the most timely and important items conference organizers what you to know about. Use WeeVee to add events to your calendar, and to network.

Move into the agenda section of the app, where you’ll have a simple easy to digest layout containing all of the conference information. You can add individual events to your calendar to help keep you organized.

Our location-based networking feature delivers quality in-app connections. Only other conference attendees will be displayed in a grid layout that uses your phone’s location to display individuals you’ve come in close contact with. Easily control the visibility of your profile to help filter your in-bound requests and use the in-app messaging feature to quickly connect and share contact information.

Event organizers can create their own WeeVee and populate her knowledge-base with information specific to their conference. It’s easy to configure and cuts down on the costs and time associated with developing a proprietary app for a conference or event.

How we built it

  • Backend (node.js / heroku)
  • Frontend (Swift - iOS)

The assistant in WeeVee is powered by a graph we architected that not only guides the user down the path they want to go, but also ensures that WeeVee responds in meaningful ways. There's a bit of dynamism to her responses already, making her feel a bit less ro-bot-ic. Each path you go down the guide tree, WeeVee will provide you a relative fact, then ask the user if they'd like to learn more, or choose a different path altogether.

Challenges we ran into

Time gave us many challenges, but we pulled through. We had to architect a way to take people down guided paths of information, while also adding a bit of randomness to WeeVee so she doesn't seem so ro-bot-ic. You'll see that taking the same path in WeeVee doesn't always give you the same results!

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • ​*Dynamism!* For example, if you ask WeeVee about the speakers at an event, she'll reply kindly and give you a Profile Card of one of the speakers (today it's random, but there's no reason it couldn't learn from other users on the system. If lots of people are looking at Neil deGrasse Tyson, let's surface that one first). Of course, the user can respond that they want to hear about the rest of the speakers, and WeeVee will just as kindly help you out.

  • ​*Simple!​* The API we built is incredibly simple. You fetch data at /api/ and WeeVee returns the messages to display from her, the options to give the user, and each of those options include the link to the next API endpoint. This makes digesting WeeVee data very simple, which is key to extending her functionality.

example option

{
  "text": "Who else is speaking?",
  "type": "Text",
  "uri": "/events/2/speakers"
}

What's next for WeeVee

We see the WeeVee App solving pain points for both organizers and attendees. In the future we'd add an organic question functionality where users can ask WeeVee any question, and collate that event-specific information to improve that WeeVee's responses.

We want to use WeeVee to give organizers the ability to survey their attendees, and enable attendees to provide real time feedback and concerns. Our goal is to include statistical analysis tools that can help organizers plan and improve the overall experience for their attendees.

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