One of the greatest pleasures about working on the Uber API is watching developers use it in creative ways. As a perk for being one of the official API sponsors for Outside Hacks 2015 last weekend, our team had the opportunity to watch over 250 attendees do just that. For those who are unfamiliar with the event, Outside Hacks is not only the largest music festival hackathon in California, but it’s also the official hackathon for Outside Lands music festival.

This year, participants were given 15 hours to create an app that would enhance the experience for artists and fans that are attending the Outside Lands music festival in August. The competition was fierce with over 60 teams in participation, but team GetOutside took home the gold for using the Uber API in the most creative way.

GetOutside helps festival goers save time at festivals

Every year Outside Lands generates more than 60,000 attendees that flood to Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, for a chance to catch their favorite artists perform. One of the biggest issues that the team recognized was that when you have so many attendees going to a single event, traffic and congestion will always be one of the biggest problems. By using the Uber API and Google Maps API (traffic layer), the GetOutside team was able to create an iOS app that helped address this issue. The application analyzes traffic patterns ahead, provides the most efficient route for the driver, and suggests the best drop off point for the rider when comparing the ETA for driving vs. walking. This way riders can get as close as possible to the event via Uber and when it’s most efficient, they can simply get out and walk the rest of the way. The drop off point not only suggests the spot which will save the rider time, but can also prevent future traffic congestion as well.

Why our team is so excited about hackathons

Hackathons have become a core part of our culture here at Uber, and we can’t wait to participate in our next one. We released our API in August and by March we made the Request endpoint available. Since then we’ve rolled out even more endpoints and the ability for developers to monetize with cash rewards! We’ve also hosted, sponsored, and collaborated with others in an effort to share the product that we’re so proud of. We can’t wait for you all to build the next big thing and we hope to see you at our next event!

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