Published: February 14, 2016
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By: Byron Phung, Cal Poly Pomona
=== INSPIRATION ===
The world of car spotting is huge, and a great amount of those who participate in this exciting hobby earn significant rewards from their video blogs and photography. We created a platform that allows this global community of car spotters to more easily & conveniently share content with each other and to enable other aspiring car spotters to join in on the fun & action.
=== HACKATHON IMPLEMENTATION ===
To provide a working proof-of-concept within a 24-hour competition time span, our team decided to focus on one of the most popular fields of car spotting: exotic cars. Through simple selections of a make & model using a custom Pebble Watchapp or Android application, car spotters can easily pin the car information along with their current coordinates to a custom map provided through the Esri API.
=== MY CONTRIBUTIONS DURING HACKPOLY ===
--- TECHNICAL ---
--- TEAM & PRODUCT MANAGEMENT ---
With my team members wanting to purely focus on their Android development and Esri API implementation, I naturally found myself filling in the role as team & product manager. Having had prior experience in Android, I mentored and provided guidance to our Android developer in addition to distributing the workload & managing our available resources. Eventually, my management contributions came down to organizing our team of 3 and leading the efforts to seamlessly integrate our individual components and produce a working product. Once the hacking period ended, I was the primary spokesperson of our team who pitched our hack to multiple judges during exhibition, which included JPL's Chief Technology Officer Tom Soderstrom, Northrop Grumman recruiters, and Esri GeoDev representatives just to name a few. Eventually, our team proudly won Esri's sponsor prize for "Best use of Esri API" during the final award ceremony.
=== CHALLENGES WE FACED ===
=== THE FUTURE OF CARMMUNITY: EXOTICS ===
As major hobbyists in car spotting, our team unanimously agreed that we'd love to continue developing this "hack" into a global product. Due to legal concerns with already-existing names of "Carmmunity", we've decided to change our name to "Cars and Spotters" as a play on the words like "Cars and Coffee". In addition, we see our works growing into a community of communities - a platform where it isn't just exotic cars and car spotters of all genres, such as JDM, Japanese, German, etc. can share their passions and works with the world. We are also working on additional features, such as providing heatmaps, which would provide historical perspectives on potential "hotspots", or integrating artificial intelligence, which would allow automatic tagging using image and voice recognition.
=== OUR MISSION AND WHAT SEPARATES US FROM OTHER CAR SPOTTING PLATFORMS ===
We're focusing on the niche of providing content. Car spotters are artists in a sense that they have the freedom to portray their content in whichever manner fits them the most. However, how will they get the content itself? This is where Cars and Spotters will come in. As car spotter hobbyists ourselves, our mission is to enable ourselves so that we can enable others. By providing better and more convenient access to statistical & historical data, which is shared & crowd-sourced by the community of car spotters, car spotters can more efficiently plan their next spotting trip, producing more content and reducing the time wasted trying on finding the content itself.
=== SEE OUR ORIGINAL HACKPOLY SUBMISSION ===
To see our original HackPoly submission, please visit http://devpost.com/software/carmmunity.