May 16, 2018

On open-sourcing my code

Hey guys

I worked with a team last year to launch the whooshka parking app (in December 2017) here in Melbourne Australia. I am learning to code as I go, and didnt build most of it, but it belongs to me. I am seriously considering open sourcing it, as that may be a faster way to solve urban congestion from parking. up to 75% of traffic is because people are looking for street parking.

Imagine where cars and smartphones automatically detect people leaving a parking spot (this is what Whooshka does) and suggests that to others in the vicinity.

Any tips on the pros and cons of opening it up to devs to tinker with and improve? I've also designed a specification (https://github.com/whooshka/restrictiondataspec) that standardises the description of any parking sign anywhere in the world.

What do you guys reckon? how best to tackle the problems of shitty parking with the tech we've developed?

Cheers, Z


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    It's not the type of app to attract a large developer pool by itself so if you want it to be active you'll likely need to invest a lot of time into attracting developers to the project. Then if you are lucky enough to attract them you'll need to manage them.

    If you want to solve the problem and are not concerned with making money from it then it's worth a try and if it does find an active developer community and management becomes too much you can always hand it over to someone else.

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      thanks Shawn - appreciate that feedback very much! in your experience what are the "types" of work/apps/code that attracts interest from the community? this is very much day 0 for me, so all the intel helps! thank you again.

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        Developer tools(itch scratching) or tools with high profiles(rep building)

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          Ok thanks Shawn. will keep that filter on as i peer about at projects!

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    I just visited your site and I'm not sure it works.. Whooshka seems to just be listing all the parking spots, not available parking spots.

    Or at least from my view of Exhibition street those spots aren't free.

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      Yep thats from the dataset that City of Melbourne has given us access to. ~20% error rate depending on the day. but in general its pretty accurate. But its the app that has the autodetection tech.

      And the website only shows available spots as per the data feed that council has given us.

      By the way i cant seem to access hugetiny.co? tried to find you on linked in but you're not active it appears.

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        Oh I see, bit of a shame but it sounds like a good idea when it works.

        Hugetiny.co isn't a thing yet 😅and I don't think I've got a linked in, feel free to tweet me @picrelateditsme

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          ah well look forward to seeing it!

          So far we have had 0 complaints about the parking finding - partly because we provide options within the app. Since most people sticky beak but then things change when they actually need to park, we find that have been able to find them parking in less than 5 minutes. and adding the disability data helped too. The key now is to switch from sensor feeds to auto detection (but that needs app distribution) as that is a much cheaper solution that sensors/government dependence etc.

          when are you launching hugetiny?

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            Interesting to hear, I'll give it a shot next time I drive to work :)

            I'm thinking of launching this week, depending on the weather.