Home innovation FindMyTaxi wins Cape Town transport hackathon

FindMyTaxi wins Cape Town transport hackathon

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The hustle and bustle of Nairobi public transport is mayhem. We can only imagine when rules and regulations of the public transport sector will allow us Kenyans to experience technology the same way as our counterparts in South Africa, where a certain  group of developers have built an app called FindMyTaxi which is to give an Uber-like experience for this minibus taxis on the local public transport sector. Last weekend the app was named the winner of a Cape Town hackathon aimed at creating solutions to improve the use of public transport.

The hackathon was hosted by the Bandwidth Barn, KAT-O, WhereIsMyTransport and Women in Tech, and was aimed at hacking WhereIsMyTrasnport’s OPENApi to develop products that will make public transport in Cape Town much more integrated, accessible and sustainable.

Several developers, designers, data scientists, and other enthusiasts competed in four categories, namely Integrated Mobility, Healthy Mobility, Inclusive Mobility and Future Mobility.

FindMyTaxi emerged overall winner of the contest and will receive an all-expenses paid trip to the 62nd UITP Global Public Transport Summit, which will be held later this year in Montreal, Canada.

The solution aims to provide an Uber-like experience for minibus taxi users and make off-peak taxi operations more efficient whereby it connects drivers, passengers, the WhereIsMyTransport platform and a chatbot, allowing users to receive real-time information about upcoming taxis and drivers to be notified of demand.

“I’ve been dreaming of this day, and this hackathon, for a long time. When I moved to Cape Town, I gave up my car. I wanted to be able to live without it. I’m so glad that we’ve had the opportunity to create something that can help others do the same,” said Emma Phiri of FindMyTaxi.

The Healthy/Inclusive mobility category was won by GoWell; Team Mobz, the Integrated Mobility category; Rydr, the Implementation Readiness Prize while Whizzherd won the Best Design Prize.

The hackathon, which held on March 3 – 5, 2017, was part of part of the Global Public Transport Hackathon Series, and was sponsored by Youth 4 Public Transport, City of Cape Town and Microsoft.

“It is through the use of the data gathered by WhereIsMyTransport that we, as active corporate citizens, are able to address some of the real challenges faced in our public transport sector. The use of data, and open data for that, has the potential to assist and guide the transformation of all sectors. Innovative solutions developed by participating hackers has a vast potential to be tapped for the benefit of people, business and the economy, “ said Riedwaan Bassadien, Open Source Lead at Microsoft SA.



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