Let’s go back in time, to the end of July 2015, AKA the end of AngelHack’s Eighth Global Hackathon series: AH8 Silicon Valley. Always the culminating event of any AngelHack series, the Silicon Valley event is our largest, and there’s always some great talent that emerges. One standout team was Rydr.
Why are they special? Not only did they win the local Clusterpoint prize (dem Apple Watches though..), but they walked away with Clusterpoint’s Grand Prize of $10k. Read on to find out why.
— Clusterpoint (@Clusterpoint) October 5, 2015
Who are they?
Before we get to what they created, let’s meet the creators. The Rydr team is made up of Chalmers Brown, Zack Field, and Charles Duong. Zack and Charles are based in SF, while Chalmers resides in LA. Chalmers runs a company called Turvation Labs where he helps startups and tech companies build back-end technologies. Charles does freelance work. Zack just graduated in May, and works for NodePrime. They were strangers prior to the event, and met during one of the “bonding sessions” led by the “loud guy with the beard”, AKA AngelHack CMO Brian Collins.
What is Rydr?
Basically, it’s Kayak for the ride-sharing industry. It curates rates from various ride-sharing services (Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, Flywheel, and Via to name a few). The guys built an API that pulls data from all of these services. Currently, only UBER had an open API, so they had to figure out the rest of the services themselves. Smart right?
The team added an analytics engine that utilizes the Rydr API and sticks all the data from these ride-sharing services, into a Clusterpoint database, and then used the awesome Clusterpoint geography based querying tools to basically layout what services had cars in certain areas, and show where are they located in real time.
“I’ve been to 5 or 6, and this one was definitely one of the better ones.”
(this could have been awkward if the guys weren’t a fan of the event..)
“It was a really cool experience, especially for my first hackathon. I got to be a part of a great team, and really immerse myself in this world of hacking.” said Charles (the lone stay-up-all-nighter). “I didn’t know as much as Chalmers and Zack, so I spent half the time trying to learn, and the other half trying to build what was given to me. It helped me gain a little more confidence in continuing to work on tech and hacking.”
Clusterpoint. “It was really easy to use.”
“It was one of the better experiences I’ve had, especially in terms of documentation. Most of the questions we had, there was already an answer there. Plus the two guys that were there were really helpful”, said Chalmers.
On the other side, Didzis from Clusterpoint remarked about how team Rydr’s idea stood out in several ways. They managed to utilize the Clusterpoint technology, develop with it in a short time frame, and they really “explored the potential of our technology.” Their solution can scale and cover vast areas, and as Clusterpoint is an instantly scalable solution, the match was perfect.
(By the way, if you’re curious about Clusterpoint, head over to https://www.clusterpoint.com/. They’re an amazing company, and they truly value building relationships with developers. We luuvvvv them.)
We “saw nice geospatial data processing, real time data analytics, which reflected this real time action almost instantly. It was about showing, with their working prototype, that they really managed to get a solution out of Clusterpoint. They were successful, and compared to other teams, they technically solved the challenge they were aiming for,” added Didzis.
The hackathon wasn’t the end for Rydr. The team plan to beta test it in key areas, and based on that will see if the need is there for expansion. As demand (hopefully) grows, the team will work to expand it. Zack’s been showing it off on testflight to his friends and family, and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive and it seems like the need is there.
(The team during their pitch)
The struggle? Making time to focus. But after talking with the guys on the phone, it’s apparent these guys have the drive to make Rydr the next big thing.
“This team can bring this idea to the next level,” agreed Clusterpoint.
Keep an eye out for Rydr.