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Project Name: Curious

Project Team:

Tatagatha Dasgupta - strategy, js, php, Twitter api

Trina Chiasson - strategy and organization, css, html, some js

Cole Gillespie - js guru

Cody Shotwell - design, user interface, usability

Shout out to Laurian, Nicola, Saleem, and Chris for their support.


Curious is a web application for expressing curiosity about events at specific geographic locations and uncovering additional information about those events. The user posts an item they are curious about. Location data and the #curious hashtag is appended to the post, and other recently posted nearby media is returned based on relevance to that post. In addition to posting a curiosity, users can simply search the map for media based on a given radius from a location, the time span in which the media was posted, and keyword(s).

Key Features

  • The essential components of the application (inputting posts and searches, outputting media on the map) are already in place.
  • Currently, the application only supports posting and displaying tweets
  • Curious currently works in the Web browser

Next Steps

  • Create mobile version, which would actually allow on-the-fly discovery of nearby media and reporting of #curious events
  • Incorporate other services, such as Flickr or Facebook, so Curious can be used more like a social media client
  • Create marketing plan
  • Create community building/adoption plan
  • Create product goals and business plan
  • Document version control, project phases, log more desired features
  • More nuts and bolts coding (making sure it works)
  • User acceptance testing

Use Cases

  • A user indicates a curiosity about an event at a particular time and place. Reporters can access the collection of curiosities on a shared map and contact witnesses who entered information about the event. Reporters can then send relevant stories directly to users who are curious about specific events.
  • A reporter posts a Curiosity about an existing or potential story; relevant media is returned and the reporter can watch a story evolve or connect with sources.
  • A local group could use Curious to learn more about a specific subject. For example, birdwatchers could track the time and place where they spot different types of birds, thereby learning more about bird activity patterns in a certain region.
  • Could be tested at a large event, such as the Olympics; alternately could uncover info during a breaking news taking place at a particular location

Project Evolution

 In the early stages of #hacktoberfest, similarities between Cole's Finden project and Trina's Curious project emerged and the two were combined. Tatagatha and Cody stepped in to fill technical and design gaps. Our four-day experience in Berlin was a merging of diverse skills sets and collision of ideas.

Day 1

  • found existing mapping code
  • explored js tools for publishing tweets
  • had strategic conversations with other participants about potential hurdles
  • decided to combine Curious with Cole's project, Finden

Day 2

  • Trina worked with Mark to build Hyperaudio
  • Cody began working on a way to combine the two projects into a unified user experience
  • Cole wrote the base js code and shared it on GitHub
  • T. implemented Twitter authentication

Day 3

  • T. integrated the PHP with the frontend code
  • Trina worked on the front end and prepared the project presentation
  • Cody worked on design elements, look and feel
  • Cole added UI functionality and interactivity

Day 4

  • Updated wiki
  • Discussed next steps

Big Goal for MoJo Hackfest:

Work on interesting projects. Learn from everyone. Contribute as much as possible. Move a few steps closer to turning Curious into a finished product.

Key steps toward goal

  1. Organize a list of tangible activities for contributors with different skills
  2. Learn more about the specific development needs for an application like Curious (language? security? apis? existing code?)
  3. Learn as much as I can about the other projects. Find out which ones could use my specific skill sets.
  4. Help to organize the needs of each project. Connect talent with needs and foster collaboration.
  5. Make projects shine. Boost the collective product quality for the entire #moznewslab team.

Pending needs

  1. Someone who can help figure out how to collect data from multiple users and place that data on a shared map.
  2. JavaScript/jQuery whiz


Link for more info: http://trina.ch/curious

Link to github repos: Curious

Link to presentation: Curious Slides