We wanted to explore uses for machine learning, so we decided to create a tool to predict availability of Capital Bikeshare stations depending on location, time of day, and weather.
We used the large amount of trip data DC's Capital Bikeshare has made available to the public, combined with other historical data, and applied statistical methods. To increase accuracy, we added weather data to the learning system.
We quickly built a web page and a REST API that collects user input and displays predictions for the given location, date, and time. Next, we decided to add a conversational interface so we can access the API using natural language. We also added a Slack bot integration so that users can access the solution right in the chat window.
We got a few RadBeacons to play around with, so we integrated them with Slack to create a "check-in" feature that alerts team members via Slack when someone gets into the office.
We created an Alexa skill that integrates with our beacon- and Slack-enabled Mission Data Office app. Staffers can ask the Amazon Echo to identify the specific location of someone in the office. We also created a skill for Alexa to tell our DC staffers which food trucks are outside the office at any given time.