A web app that matches you with others to walk together, improving the safety and enjoyability of pedestrian transit for a more sustainable world.
Walking is a sustainable and effective form of transit whose popularity is negatively impacted by perceived concerns about boredom and safety. People who are choosing between multiple forms of transit might not select walking due to these issues. Our goal was to create a solution that would make walking more enjoyable, encouraging people to follow a more sustainable lifestyle by providing new benefits to the walking experience.
What it does
Our web app, WalkWithMe, helps connect users to other walkers nearby based on times and routes, allowing them to walk together to their intended destinations. It approximately finds the path that maximizes time spent walking together while also minimizing total travel distance for the people involved. People can create accounts that allows them to become verified users in the network, introducing a social aspect to walking that makes it fun and productive. Additionally, this reduces safety concerns as these are often less pronounced in groups of people versus individuals while walking; this is especially true at night.
How we built it
We used react.js for the frontend, Sonr and Golang for the backend. We hosted our website using Firebase. Our map data was generated from the Google Maps API.
Challenges we ran into
Our frontend team had to completely learn react.js for the project. We also did not have prior experience with the Sonr and Google Maps API. We needed to figure out how to integrate Sonr into the backend with Golang and Google Maps API to find the path.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are proud of developing and implementing a heuristic algorithm that finds a reasonable path to walk to the destination and for creating an effective backend and frontend setup despite just learning react and Sonr in the hackathon. We also overcame many bugs relating to Google's geocoding API.
What we learned
We learned react.js to display our interactive website efficiently, how to integrate Sonr into our project to store profile and location data, and how to use Google Maps to achieve our goals with our program.
What's next for WalkWithMe
We have many ideas for how we can take the next step with our app. We want to add a tiered verification system that grants you credit for completing walks without issues. The higher you are in the rating system, the more often you will be recommended walks with smaller groups of people (as you are viewed as more trustworthy). We also want to improve the user interface of the app, making it more intuitive to use. We also want to expand on the social aspect of the app, allowing people to form walking groups with others and deepen connections with people they meet. We also want to add geolocation trackers so that users can see where their group members are, in case they don't walk at a similar speed toward the meet-up location.