RHOKATL June 2012 Entry: I Wish This Was, Where? Takes 1st Place!

03 Jun 2012

So I attended RHOK Atlanta this weekend (in fact, writing this there now!), my first hack-a-thon in...oh about 2 years. Also, the first hack-a-thon where I felt I could actually contribute and be useful. I think I just bummed free food last time...

Our entry was I Wish This Was, Where? , an idea piggybacking on artist Candy Chang's I Wish This Was public art project that invites residents to provide civic input on-site. Surprisingly, it won first place. With so many fantastic applications presented we were all shocked!

I worked in conjuction with Jeff Walters, David Emory and Mathilde Piard. David gave us the design, Jeff created a prototype mobile app, and Mathilde was the one bringing the ideas and contacting the people in charge of the project. I was in charge of making the website backend, maps frontend, and deployment.

The way it works is that every hour or so the site crawls Instagram and Flickr, looking for images with the tag #Iwishthiswas. If they're new and geotagged, they're added to the database. When a user visits the site, it centers on their location and displays tags in the area. If they click on tags they are presented with a thumbnail and description.

Future ideas for the site include being able to comment and upvote project ideas, possibly links to related Kickstarters, etc.

All in all an extremely simple but effective little site. I got to learn Heroku which was super cool (and frustrating, at times), met some really great people, and had a lot of fun.